27th 2011 saw the first Night Photoshoot to be held at the Essex
airfield. The venue was absolutely superb, with the taking place
around by the Squadron. This is a club which is housed in genuine
wartime buildings and furnished with 40’s furniture. It
gave the evening a real atmosphere, plus some great food and drink.
event was organized by Egon Johansen and his team, with the aim
of raising funds for the Gnat display team ahead of this years
airshow season. Unfortunately the star of the show, newly restored
Gnat G-MOUR , was unable to leave its hangar, due to technical
difficulties. The aircraft was meant to be rolled out especially
for the shoot. Another late cancellation was Bell UH-1 G-HUEY.
The owners had found that one of the wheels on the skids had broken.
Despite this I thought the line-up was great.
list of aircraft were as follows..
Folland Gnat T1 G-FCRE– The Gnat Display Team
Folland Gnat T1 (GTIMM (XS111)) – The Gnat Display Team
Hunting P-84 Jet Provost T3 (GBKOU (XN637)) – Oliver Wheeldon
BAC 167 Strikemaster (GMXPH (311)) – Stephen Partridge-Hicks
DeHavilland Vampire T11 (GVTII (WZ507)) – Vampire Preservation
BAC Jet Provost MK52 (GPROV (104)) – Swords Aviation
BAC Jet Provost MK5P (GVIVM) – Swords Aviation
Yakovlev Yak 52 (GYAKR (03 white)) – Roy Alexander
Yakovlev Yak 18T
arrival I found out that Gnat G-RORI (due to feature in the shoot)
had swallowed something on take off and was also removed from
the list. Luckily G-FCRE was able to be brought out to bring the
no. of Gnats back to 2.
shoot was well organized and the lighting (after a little fettling)
was bang on. The only 2 little complaints I had were that all
the jets seemed to run their engines all at the same time. I later
heard this was because North Weald are not allowed to run jets
after 8pm. The other niggle was where the cars had been parked.
They did feature in some of my shots!! On the whole it was a very
enjoyable evening. The owners and Egons team were very friendly
and helpful, and I can highly recommend the Squadrons burger and
engine runs, the cones used to mark a line where photographers
would be safe to shoot from were moved to give closer access to
the aircraft. I’d like to say a big thank you to all of
the owners, Egon Johansen and his team and the squadron for making
the evening thoroughly enjoyable. Hopefully this won’t be
the last night shoot at North Weald…..