Archive for May, 2007

Casino draws the crowds

Monday, May 21st, 2007

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is again delighted to be working alongside the Westcliff Casino to bring this prestigious event to Southend.

The Casino has sponsored the Airshow since 2001, and this year it is going one-step further and will be giving visitors to the airshow an opportunity to win a Caribbean holiday in a special prize draw.

Mike Phillips, General Manager of the Westcliff Casino, says: “We are very happy to be supporting the Southend Airshow. We have been involved for the past six years and it just keeps on getting better and better every time. The event happens right outside the Casino and we have the best views of the Airshow in Essex. The Westcliff Casino Southend Airshow is a massive event for the community of Southend and attracts hundreds of thousands of people from all over the country. It really puts Southend and the Westcliff Casino on the map. I’m really looking forward to seeing the Red Arrows perform again this year – the show promises to be very exciting. I would encourage as many people as possible to come along to the event and take part in our fabulous competition.”

Councillor John Lamb, Southend’s Executive Councillor for Enterprise, Tourism and Regeneration, says: “The Airshow is fantastic free family fun and is the biggest event in Southend’s calendar. It’s hugely popular with residents and people flock from miles to see the spectacular air displays. However, the Airshow is not just a huge tourist attraction, it also generates significant, essential income for many of our local businesses, supports more than 60 local jobs and gives the town year round world-wide publicity which puts us and our leisure industry firmly in the public eye.”

For more information log onto or call the Airshow Hotline on 01702 390333.

Lots do to – thanks to Airshow ground crew!

Sunday, May 20th, 2007

There’s more than just spectacular aerial stunts at this year’s Westcliff Casino Southend Airshow.Residents keen to enjoy Southend’s premier event, on Sunday 27th and Bank Holiday Monday 28th May 2007, can expect plenty of lively attractions.

Southend’s famous seafront will be packed with activities, market areas, big brand name exhibitors such as Honda, Hyundai, Waitrose and EA Games, military town shows and lots of opportunities to mingle with the pilots taking part in Europe’s largest free Airshow.

New for 2007 will be the Veterans’ Village – a place where ex-service men and women of all ages can come together to get in touch with lost friends and apply for their coveted Veteran’s Badge. The Veterans’ Village is being backed by the Ministry of Defence and supported by Friends Reunited.

Councillor John Lamb, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council’s Executive Councillor for Enterprise, Tourism and Regeneration says: “This year promises to be the best ever! We’re showcasing exciting aerial teams and the seafront will be buzzing with activity, so come along!”

Landing again is the ‘Meet the Pilots’ area. This crowd-pleaser is expected to be one of the show’s biggest draws, where people of all ages have the chance to meet up with the stars of the show, take some photos and get some autographs!

People that want to experience some ups and downs of their own they can try out the flight simulators, whilst huge inflatables will keep the kids occupied when the planes are gearing up for action. The more daring can impress their friends with a go on the infamous ‘sling shot’ ride.

The Army and RAF will be there, demonstrating their weaponry and equipment, and the Royal Marines will take on any challengers up the climbing wall.

Hungry plane enthusiasts can choose from plenty of popular market and food stalls serving up a variety of snacks and drinks.

BBC Essex is broadcasting special programmes live from the seafront and there will be exclusive coverage of the entire flying display. Radio Airshow is broadcast at the event, on 1530mw from 12 noon on both days. Essex FM will be bringing some great entertainment over both days of the Airshow with roadshows, competitions and giveaways.

If the public have any queries or lost property then staff at the Airshow Information Centre, opposite Westcliff Casino, can help them out. Visitors are advised to arrange to meet their friends and families at the Information Centre should they accidentally split up; staff will be ready to look after any lost youngsters.

For more information log onto, or call the Airshow Hotline on 01702 390333.

Get reunited at the Veterans Village

Saturday, May 19th, 2007

Hundreds of former service men and women are set to arrive in Southend next weekend as the town supports Veterans Day 2007, part of this year’s Westcliff Casino Southend Airshow.A huge Veterans Village will be created on the seafront, hosted by many local Veterans Associations. They are calling for veterans of all ages, including those who have served in more recent conflicts such as the Falklands and Iraq to come along and share their stories.

There will be the Pegasus Collection (the largest collection of WWII memorabilia), “then and now” photographic exhibitions and weapon displays, plus a giant interactive screen where people can leave messages for former colleagues and friends who they may have served with.

The Veterans Agency will also be on hand to promote the support available to Veterans, and there will be opportunities for all ex-service people to apply for their “Veterans Badge”.

Southend’s Veterans Village is being supported by Friends Reunited.

Jonathan Clark, Head of Friends Reunited, says: “Friendships forged between comrades in the armed forces form amongst the strongest bonds especially for those who served in war-time Britain, so it’s particularly hard when friends lose contact over the years. We’ve heard of some particularly heart-warming stories of old pals reuniting through the site and the changes we’ve made to improve the service mean it’s now easier than ever to find that special person you may be looking for.

“One member reunited with a fellow evacuee after 60 years apart and another with his Navy cabin mate after 30 years. It would be wonderful to see more reunions at this year’s airshow.”

Councillor John Lamb, Southend’s Executive Councillor for Enterprise, Tourism and Regeneration, says: “I am delighted that we have been able to support Veterans Day at the Airshow. Please come along and support the veterans, hear their interesting stories and how they continue to contribute to their local communities.”

Veteran’s Day has been organised by the Ministry of Defence and officially takes place on the 27th of June.

For more information log onto or call the Airshow Hotline on 01702 390333.

Jumbo Boost for Airshow!

Friday, May 18th, 2007

The organiser’s of the next weekend’s Westcliff Casino Southend Airshow have made a huge coup with this year’s flying display – with an appearance from a jumbo jet!A Boeing 747 from Hong Kong based Oasis airlines will be making its Southend Airshow debut on the Sunday of the show. It is the largest aircraft ever to display at the show and will be an awesome sight for spectators – especially as it’s rarely seen at an airshow, let alone a seaside event.

Airshow flying director Ray Thilthorpe says: “It really is very exciting to have the Boeing 747 in our Sunday line up. It’s a massive aircraft and will look spectacular set against the dramatic backdrop of the Thames Estuary.”

Another big star set to appear in Monday’s flying programme is the RAF’s Typhoon. This state-of-the-art aircraft, which is set to be the RAF’s major front line fighter replacing the Tornado F3 and Jaguar, will be making a welcome return to the free seaside show. The Southend Airshow in 2005 was the first public display from the Typhoon and wowed the crowds with its amazing manoeuvrability.

Taking place over the Bank Holiday 27th & 28th May, the Airshow attracts approximately three-quarters of a million people to Southend and generates more than £10 million into the local economy each year.

Other aerial highlights for this year include the welcome return of the world famous Red Arrows. The RAF’s flagship aerobatic team will be taking to the skies on both Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will be adding a touch of nostalgia with the Hurricane, Spitfire and C-47 Dakota formation. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the flight and its appearance at Southend will be a chance for the public to see a piece of history in action.

For more information log onto or call the Airshow Hotline on 01702 390333.