Archive for April, 2023

Confirmations from France and the Netherlands!

Thursday, April 27th, 2023

RIAT Typhoon

Last announcement of April here, big announcements from France and the Netherlands!

Let’s start off with our flying display announcements. From the French Air and Space Force, we are pleased to confirm the participation of the Rafale Solo Display. The team will have a newly painted display jet for the 2023 season which we look forward to seeing, so keep your eyes out on all our socials for the reveal of this nearer to the show. In addition, as part of our SKYTANKER23 theme, visitors on Friday will be treated to an exclusive appearance from a C-135FR Stratotanker!

Also, this week, we are adding more aircraft to our special static display to celebrate the Italian Air Force’s centenary, with a pair of MB.326 and Fiat G.91 all confirmed.

To round up, we have a large contingent from our friends in the Royal Netherlands Air Force to join the RIAT 2023 static displays! Fast jets include a brand-new pair of F-35A Lightnings alongside a pair of F-16AM Fighting Falcons, C-130H Hercules, a pair of Chinook helicopters and an NH90 helicopter.

Now that the announcements are coming thick and fast, why not enjoy RIAT from a whole new perspective with a FRIAT pass? From £300 you can enjoy an exclusive grandstand seat in a prime location along with marquee, wifi, and private toilets! The FRIAT pass allows you to be at RIAT from Wednesday to Monday, to see every aircraft arrive at the show and know that your seat alongside fellow aviation fans is secure.

The FRIAT pass gives complete flexibility with access to Park & View arrivals on the Wednesday right through to departures on the Monday.

Shuttleworth – Season Premiere Air Show

Thursday, April 27th, 2023

Shuttleworth Hurricane

The Shuttleworth Collection and Gardens are proud to announce their first air show of the 2023 season.

The event will be held on the 7th May 2023, the Sunday following the coronation of King Charles III. The theme for the air show reflects the celebration of the coronation and also the significance the Royal Family has had on the Shuttleworth Trust and the aircraft and vehicles that are maintained and displayed to this day.

The Season Premiere promises to be an incredible spectacle with dramatic air displays over the Old Warden Aerodrome. As well as a host of Shuttleworth operated aircraft, such as the Blériot XI (the world’s oldest airworthy aeroplane), there are also fantastic visiting acts lined up like the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s Avro Lancaster, the Fairey Swordfish, the de Havilland Chipmunk, that King Charles learnt to fly in, as well as the display debut of the Westland Lynx AH7 XZ179.

Shuttleworth Air Shows are not just about what happens in the air, but provide a thrilling day out for all ages and interest types. The historic collection of vintage vehicles will be showcased to the public, Discovery Zones will be located across the site for some hands on activities, and food and fun are provided by the vast array of traders and ground attractions.

Rare example of Second World War Bomber unveiled after decade of conservation

Monday, April 24th, 2023

RAF Museum Wellington

A Second World War Vickers Wellington bomber has been restored to its former glory after more than a decade of conservation at the Royal Air Force Museum Midlands.

The Wellington, one of only two remaining, has moved from the Conservation Centre into the public display hangar and will be the centre piece of a new Bomber Command exhibition opening in May.

The fuselage and inner wings section can now be viewed by visitors, while the remaining work of attaching the huge 31ft outer wings, engines, propellers and front turret to the aircraft will be carried out over the next few weeks. Members of the public will be able to view some of the final steps towards its completion as the Museum’s Conservation team work within the hangar.

The Wellington was widely used as a night bomber in the early years of the Second World War, and famous for its geodetic fuselage structure designed by Barnes Wallis. By 1942 Wellingtons were the most numerous aircraft in Bomber Command. They began to be replaced by more capable four-engined heavy bombers such as Halifaxes and Lancasters. Wellingtons continued to operate with Bomber Command as a training aircraft and served in North Africa, Italy, the Far East and Coastal Command.

The Museum’s example was constructed in 1944 and served with No. 1 Air Navigation Training School between 1949 and 1953. Although not operational in the Second World War, it represents the role played in the bombing campaign against Germany. This much-loved aircraft is one of only two Wellingtons to survive into the present day and the only one complete with its fabric outer skin. The aircraft is now on public display at the RAF Museum Midlands for the first time.

After almost 40 years on display at the Museum’s site in London, the aircraft was transported by road to the Museum’s Conservation Centre in the Midlands in July 2010, for work treating corrosion to its structure and a complete replacement of its fragile Irish linen outer skin.

The extensive restoration of the Wellington is one of the largest aircraft projects to be undertaken by the Museum’s Conservation Centre team. Work has been carried out by Technicians, Apprentices and a team of Volunteers, including one Volunteer who previously worked on Wellingtons during his RAF instructional airframes training more than half a century ago. During the conservation process the Wellington was regularly visited by the late Mary Stopes-Roe, daughter of the aircraft designer Barnes Wallis.

The final stages of the project will be completed within the next few weeks, in time for the Bomber Command exhibition opening on 16 May.

The Museum is open daily from 10am and admission is free. Pre-book your arrival time online at

Historic aircraft confirmed for 2023!

Friday, April 21st, 2023

RIAT Me262

Another week, another set of amazing aircraft announcements!

Kicking us off, it’s with great pleasure that we can say the SKYTANKERS are here! First on the list, we have a KC-135 Stratotanker being supplied by Metrea Strategic Mobility for our static aircraft display. This aircraft was once flown by the Republic of Singapore Air Force and is now being flown by to provide commercial air-to-air refueling for partner Air Arms. The camouflage scheme will be a real highlight, make sure you don’t miss it whilst you are on the showground!

Some rare aircraft from the Italian Army will also be joining the static display this summer. Confirmed this week, we have an amazing trio: A debuting UH-169B Helicopter, a fantastic Dornier Do-228 and a rarely seen Mangusta attack helicopter!

Last (but certainly not least) we are very excited to announce that we will be adding a Messerschmitt Me 262 to our flying display! This will be the first time that the UK will see one of these classic jets performing at an air show, so a thank you to Airbus for their efforts to support the aircraft for us to enjoy in July.

Tickets are still available for all days of the show, so get your tickets now to make sure you do not miss out on the fantastic lineup we have this year! You can check out all our Aircraft Updates here, to learn more about each aircraft and find some teasers as to what we might be announcing in the coming in the future.

Do you like fast jets?

Tuesday, April 18th, 2023

RIAT Harrier

We’re well underway with the aircraft announcements for RIAT23 and the flying display is beginning to take shape.

It won’t be long until RAF Fairford is alive with the roar of engines and there will be plenty of fast jets in the skies to get your blood pumping.

We already have F-16s courtesy of the Belgian Air Component and Royal Danish Air Force, Gripens from the Czech Air Force and Swedish Air Force, a Hornet from the Finnish Air Force, a Harrier from the Spanish Navy, and a Typhoon from the Royal Air Force.

We announce new aircraft at midday every Thursday so make sure you keep an eye out for the latest additions!

Model masterpieces on show at the RAF Museum

Tuesday, April 18th, 2023

RAF Museum Model Mania

Date: 30 April 2023 / Time: 10.00am – 5.00pm / Cost: Free entry
Airfix Make and Take: £5.00 per Airfix kit
Weathering Workshop: £40.00 per person

Discover the exciting world of model aircraft at the Royal Air Force Museum Midlands’s Model Mania event on Sunday 30 April.

Explore the Museum hangars where you will find a collection of large models displayed under the wings of the real aircraft. Airfix model making activities are guaranteed to get the whole family gluing, building and painting together in this nostalgic hands-on hobby. Advanced modellers who want to fine tune their skills can pick up tips from an expert in an exclusive workshop. Or browse the trade stalls where you can pick up all the model kits and equipment you could ever wish for and continue the modelling fun at home!

The Museum has partnered with the Large Model Association to showcase almost 100 large model aircraft, many alongside their full-size counterparts. Some of these ‘not so mini’ models have a wingspan of more than 20ft including a replica Vulcan. Displays include large-scale model versions of Spitfires, a Wellington, Lancaster, and a host of aircraft drawn from the history of aviation. From high-tech jets to First World War bi planes, all models have been created and engineered with precision to mirror the originals.

The modelling fun will continue in the ‘Airfix Make and Take’ area – where better to get into Airfix kits for the first time, than under the wings of iconic aircraft! This family friendly model making activity will offer children aged 8+ the opportunity to build and paint their own aircraft model to take home. You don’t have to be a skilled modeller to take part as helpers are there to lend a hand. Participation in the activity is £5.00 per Airfix kit.

An introduction to scale model weathering workshop is perfect for modellers who wanted to develop their skills further, by learning how to weather and age their models, giving them a used look. During this hands-on four-hour workshop attendees will learn the fundamentals of weathering techniques in a step-by-step guide, to produce authentic and realistic results. The workshop begins at 11.00am and will cover a variety of techniques from general wear and tear effects to creating and applying rust and realistic colouring. Tickets cost £40.00 per person and places are limited to 15 people.

If the Model Mania activities inspire you to take up modelling, or if you’re a pro on the lookout for a rare model edition, several model traders will be selling everything from kits and paints to magazines.

If you thought getting into modelling was fun, how about getting into a real cockpit! In addition to the Model Mania activities, the Museum will be opening the Hunter and Phantom cockpits giving visitors the opportunity to sit in the pilot seat. There’s no need to pre-book, but youngsters must be a minimum of one metre tall to sit inside the cockpit and be accompanied by an adult.

For further information on Model Mania and to pre-book your arrival time visit Entry to the Museum and the large model aircraft display is free, charges apply for some activities.

Historic aircraft confirmed for 2023!

Thursday, April 13th, 2023

RIAT Falcons

It’s a welcome return to some RIAT regulars as we’re delighted to confirm the attendance of the Royal Jordanian Falcons at this year’s show! Their Extra 330LX aircraft will be participating in the flying display, while they’ll also be bringing a Hercules for static display alongside the traditional Jordanian exhibition marquee.

Launching our celebration of the Italian Air Force’s centenary, we are pleased to confirm the participation a range of historic aircraft from Italy. The static display will including a significant number of aircraft, all adorned in Italian Air Force markings and parked together in a display celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Italian Air Force. Today we have added 10 aircraft to the participation list, including the colourful P-166C and a trio of FIAT G.46 training aircraft.

Tickets are on sale for all days, with a four hour flying display on Friday, featuring many of the weekend highlights, followed by full-length flying displays featuring all aircraft on Saturday and Sunday.

April Update at Newark Air Museum

Thursday, April 13th, 2023

Newark Air Museum Gannett XP226

Amongst the diverse efforts to prepare for the museum’s 50th Anniversary celebrations, the Restoration Manager at Newark Air Museum has signed off to start on the restoration work on Fairey Gannet XP226.

This much need work had been planned for 2022, but it was delayed by the major repaint work required on Vulcan XM594. In recent weeks some surface preparations work has been carried out on the Gannet, and with the warming temperatures in recent days the first primer has now been applied to the fuselage spine.

RAF Wings Merchandise added to competition prize pot

Sunday, April 9th, 2023

RAF Museum Midlands Prizes

RAF Museum Midlands have selected their prizes for the Airscene 2024 Calendar Competition, and have paired up an RAF Wings Wallet with an RAF Wings Leather Bottle Opener Keyring.

3 prize bundles have been offered with a combined value of £35 per bundle – the keyrings are currently discounted by 50% for anyone who doesn’t wish to wait to see if they win one.

This is the 12th consecutive year that RAF Museum Midlands have supported the Airscene Calendar Competitions, so do please consider making a visit this year…

Take-off to the Royal Air Force Museum Cosford in Shropshire and enjoy a great day out for all the family. Admission is free, simply book your arrival time online and then it’s chocks away as you explore the Museum’s vast collection of aircraft, vehicles, artefacts and the fascinating story of the RAF!

The Museum is home to over 75 historic aircraft including the world’s oldest Spitfire, the unique TSR2 and the mighty Vulcan bomber to name but a few, displayed inside three wartime hangars and within the award winning National Cold War Exhibition.

Step back in time and view the interactive Battle of Britain display featuring the world’s oldest Spitfire. The Spitfire forms the centrepiece of the new display, where the RAF’s frontline fighters, the Spitfire, Hurricane, Gladiator and Defiant are face to face with their German rivals the Me 109 and Ju88. Previously unseen objects from the Museum’s collection including flying jackets, medal bars and artefacts from the plotting rooms, will share the stories of the people who helped win the Battle, in the air and on the ground.

Let your imagination take flight inside the National Cold War Exhibition, where you will discover Cold War stories in immersive Hotspots and explore exciting displays of aircraft, iconic cars, models, tanks and even life-sized Russian dolls. Aircraft not to be missed include all three British V Bombers; Vulcan, Victor and Valiant and the English Electric Lightning suspended vertically!

Don’t forget to check out the Test Flight hangar. Here you will find a collection of prototype aircraft, many were produced in secrecy, often utilising components borrowed from other types. Highlights include the Bristol 188, built mainly of stainless steel and designed to investigate the effects of heat on aircraft structures at very high speeds.

Families visiting the RAF Museum Cosford will have the added excitement of a brand-new aviation themed playground to explore. Youngsters who dream of becoming pilots and ground crew alike now have the opportunity to roleplay as they delve into the new bespoke airfield inspired playground, complete with a mock control tower, mini hangar and even aircraft to climb onboard. The new playground will give the Museum’s youngest visitors an interactive RAF experience like no other, from physical training instructor stations, air traffic control, through to refuelling missions.

After wandering in the hangars, visitors can relax and enjoy a coffee in the restaurant which has a great selection of hot and cold food available with views overlooking the airfield.

The Museum is now open daily from 10.00am with a range of measures in place to ensure a safe and great day out for the whole family. While still offering FREE entry to all, visitors are kindly asked to pre-book their arrival time online at

To enter the Airscene 2024 Airshow Calendar Competition (currently in Early Entry Phase) please visit:

RIAT23 Merchandise On Sale Now!

Saturday, April 8th, 2023

RIAT Merchandise

To celebrate the Easter weekend, we are launching the RIAT 2023 clothing range!

This year it’s all about The Awe Inspiring Home of Flight, so our ever popular show range features a dynamic Typhoon in a colourful, illustrative design. Our show t-shirts are available in two fantastic colourways, in either navy or white for unisex adults. We would love to see you wearing your shirts, whether that’s out and about or at the show, please use #RIATMERCH to engage with us on social media!

Other products we are launching today include the polo shirt, pens, #RIAT keyring and some fantastic Wallace & Gromit kits (Build Your Own Rocket or Sidecar Plane, from the extremely popular animations!). Don’t worry we will have the full range of magnets, patches and stickers available at the show in July!

All of our clothing this year is 100% organic cotton and is packaged in compostable bags.