Aerodrome

 

Welcome to Aerodrome

Aerodrome is our fortnightly blog that looks at the exciting world of aviation, from WWI fighters to the latest commercial airliners. Curated by our Flight Specialist Michael Clegg, Aerodrome is a must-read for any aviation enthusiast.

 

Why not suggest a topic for a future Aerodrome, or discuss the latest post over on the Aerodrome Forum?

Preparing to honour Churchill’s ‘Few’

In this final edition of Aerodrome for 2019, we look forward to next year’s 80th Anniversary commemoration of the Battle of Britain and ask the question, “How will the Royal Air Force mark this historic occasion?” We illustrate this by focussing on a rather distinctive Eurofighter Typhoon fighter which went on to become something of an aviation national treasure during the 75th Anniversary back in 2015 and remain optimistic that we can look forward to a similar RAF tribute in 2020.

Cosford Airshow 2019 attracts European acts

It’s time to blow away those winter blues with a little bit of summer aviation action, as the latest edition of Aerodrome heads for RAF Cosford and this summer’s magnificent June Airshow event. A truly international affair, we will be focusing on two beautiful aircraft which took their place in an impressive static display, in addition to featuring a pair of flying display performers which rarely appear on the programme of a UK Airshow.

‘The Spirit of Great Britain’ – A Vulcan tribute

The recent announcement that Airfix will be producing a new Avro Vulcan B.2 kit reminded me that it is now 4 years since a British aviation phenomenon made its final flight and was grounded, 55 years after making its maiden flight. In this latest edition of Aerodrome, we will be paying blog homage to one of the most famous aircraft in British aviation history, one which captivated millions of people during its flying career, with its distinctive looks and thrilling displays. It’s time for some Vulcan action!

Another RAF aviation stalwart bows out

In what is proving to be a rather significant year in the history of the Royal Air Force, last week saw the service retirement of the Short Tucano T.1 trainer, as aircraft which has provided both the RAF and Royal Navy with hundreds of qualified pilots over the past 30 years. In the latest edition of Aerodrome, we pay our own photographic tribute to this handsome aeroplane by featuring a base visit to RAF Linton-on-Ouse from back in 2011 and something of a Tucanofest, as it joins the Tornado GR4 in the list of former RAF aircraft types.

‘Scramble’ – Duxford’s Battle of Britain tribute

The latest edition of Aerodrome heads back to the final two day Airshow of the 2019 season and an extremely poignant tribute to the pilots who took part in the Battle of Britain. With an impressive collection of airworthy Spitfires gathered for the event, we will see how a few fortunate photographers were able to document a contemporary recreation of the frantic ‘Squadron Scrambles’ which were so synonymous with this battle, thanks to the help of a group of accommodating and extremely hard working re-enactors.

At home with the BBMF

For members of the Lincolnshire Lancaster Association, their annual Members Day is both an undoubted highlight of their year, as well as signifying the end of another UK Airshow season. In the latest edition of Aerodrome, we join LLA members and Battle of Britain Memorial Flight devotees at RAF Coningsby in attending this magnificent event and see how Mother Nature had her say on the day’s proceedings.

Valley of aviation delights

As we prepare to enter the final few weeks of the 2019 Airshow season, the latest edition of Aerodrome takes a nostalgic trip back into our extensive archives, to look at a specially arranged event held on an active RAF air base, where members of an aviation society were treated to a day of aviation delights. The 2007 Valley Aviation Society Photocall marked the QRA introduction of the RAF’s new Typhoon fighter and included the appearance of several much-loved aircraft types which are no longer in service – join us as we review this extremely enjoyable event.

The faces of Flying Legends 2019

Even though aeroplanes still feature in the latest edition of Aerodrome, the main focus of our attentions are people, specifically the fantastic re-enactors who helped to make this year’s Flying Legends Airshow such a memorable occasion. With some of them looking for all the world like latter-day air aces, we also come across a couple of jokers who appear to have got themselves in another fine mess.

RAF Chinook in Duxford display debut

As one of the most effective aircraft in current RAF inventory, the mighty Boeing Chinook also doubles as the consummate Airshow performer and is a highlight act in any display programme in which it is scheduled to appear. In the latest edition of Aerodrome, we bring you a report from this year’s Duxford Air Festival and the first 2019 display appointment for the RAF’s popular Chinook Display Team, as we discover how the show effectively marked the 75th anniversary of the jet engine’s entry into RAF service.

Merlin powered ‘Synchro Pair’ star at East Kirkby show

It’s all about the famous Rolls-Royce Merlin engine in the latest edition of Aerodrome, as we bring you a report from last weekend’s East Kirkby Airshow and a magnificent meeting of Merlins. With De Havilland Mosquito NF.II HJ711 performing taxy runs for the first time at an East Kirkby Airshow, would a Merlin powered aircraft take the accolade for the best flying display of the day, or would another engine type attempt to spoil the party?

RIAT in the rain

Despite the most meticulous of prior planning, sometimes the Airshows we all love to attend don’t always work out the way we had hoped and even though the majority take place at the height of British summertime, the weather will always have a significant role to play. In the latest edition of Aerodrome, we report from a rather rainy Friday at the Royal International Air Tattoo and see how the damp crowds were left somewhat disappointed. We also have a quick competition, with two tickets to next weekend’s East Kirkby Airshow up for grabs.

Former Flying Legends

For European Warbird enthusiasts, this weekend marks the high-point of their year and all roads lead to the IWM airfield at Duxford for the latest instalment of the magnificent Flying Legends Airshow. To mark this occasion, the latest edition of Aerodrome features a number of former Flying Legends star aviation performers, only one of which will be displaying at this latest show. Will any of your personal Warbird favourites make the list?

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