Archive for the ‘UK Airshow News’ Category

Midlands Air Festival reveal more exciting aircraft ready for take-off this June

Thursday, March 4th, 2021

Team Raven at Midlands Air Festival

The spectacular Midlands Air Festival has announced a further wave of display aircraft that will be flying high at the festival as it gets set to return to its original location of Ragley Hall in Warwickshire on 4 – 6 June 2021.

Taking to the skies at the festival will be Team Raven, acclaimed aerobatics pilot Chris Jesson in his classic Stampe Bi Plane, the world-famous gyro pilot Peter Davies and the festival’s first ever airship appearance. In addition, organisers have already secured the mighty B-17 bomber and Rich Goodwin in his radical high powered Muscle Biplane to feature in the exhilarating programme of air displays.

The news follows confirmation from the organisers that they plan to soar ahead with the event, following the Government’s announcement on plans for lifting lockdown. As a large outdoor event, the festival will be following relevant government regulations and will be adopting all social distancing guidelines, with plenty of space for families to enjoy the jam-packed programme.

First to join the aircraft line-up will be Team Raven with their five-man formation display team that was first formed in May 2014. Simon, Steve, Barry, Gerald and Mark aka The Ravens have known each other for many years and have flown their signature Vans RV aircraft at countless air shows and displays throughout the country. The big sky display of precision aerobatics features very close formations with their wingtips just a few feet apart. The team name ‘Raven’ comes from a play on the letters ‘RV’ which you can see on the crest on the sides of the aircraft fuselages.

Adding to the aerobatic line up, pilot Chris Jesson will put his classic Stampe Bi Plane through a routine that ranges from aerial ballet to high energy manoeuvres. Chris started his flying career in the long-gone Dan-Air airline before completing his commercial service for easyJet. The Stampe, (pronounced Stomp) was a sophisticated aircraft in its day, featuring brakes, a tail wheel and ailerons on both sets of wings, things that were unusual for a light aircraft of the time.

The world-famous gyro display pilot Peter Davies will be taking to the skies in the futuristic Calidus Gyroplane. Flying for over 32 years, Peter is a highly experienced pilot who has been displaying with the Gyroplane for 22 years. Whilst the Gyroplane looks like a mini helicopter, it works in a more unusual way as the main rotor is not connected to the engine. The display is sure to be a crowd pleaser as Peter swoops the Gyroplane through the skies.

Finally, for something completely different, the festival has also confirmed its first appearance of an airship. Chris Sanger-Davies will pilot his 110,000cuft Lindstrand Airship at speeds of up to 15 knots. Whilst not the fastest aircraft attending the festival, it is certainly one of the most rare and interesting.

Trevor Graham, director of aviation for the festival commented: “These first displays are just an early taste of the aircraft we are planning to have in our daily flying programmes, many more exciting and unusual aircraft will be added to our growing list in the coming weeks. The display programme is being designed to appeal to aviation enthusiasts, families looking for a well-earned day out of excitement or those who just want to sit, relax and watch the show in the wide-open spaces of the historic Ragley Hall Estate.”

As well as a spectacular afternoon of air displays, the event will feature over 120 hot air balloons that will be rising high in the twice-daily hot air balloon mass ascents at dawn and late afternoon, along with exciting radio-controlled aircraft displays, large character kites and parachute teams.

The ticketed event will also feature the largest display of special shape character hot air balloons in Europe, with up to 40 of these amazing giants registered to attend. New special shapes that have been confirmed for the event include Wes the Wolf, the Cornetto Ice Cream, the giant Saucepan, and Buddy the smiling friend.

Mark Lockwood, spokesperson for the Midlands Air Festival, commented: “The programme for this year’s event is shaping up to be our best yet. It is set to be a brilliant family day out and we are really hoping to be a light at the end of a very long tunnel and give everyone something to really look forward to. Since the inaugural event in 2018, our Festival has proved to be hugely popular with both the Midlands audience and visitors from all over the UK.”

Local businesses are being encouraged to get in touch with the festival for bespoke sponsorship partnerships.

Tickets are now available from the Midlands Air Festival website with a special offer that ends on 31 March. Children under 14 can attend for free, when accompanied by an adult ticket holder. Tickets for this event must be purchased in advance and will be limited to allow for capacity restrictions and government regulations pertaining at the time of the event. Organisers are advising those wishing to attend to book their tickets early, in the event that the festival sells out.

There will be many more exciting additions and announcements about the events programme in the coming months, so to keep up to date with the latest news and information visit the Midlands Air Festival website www.midlandsairfestival.com

COVID UNCERTAINTY GROUNDS AIR TATTOO

Tuesday, February 16th, 2021

RIAT 2021 Cancelled

This summer’s Royal International Air Tattoo, which was due to take place at RAF Fairford, in Gloucestershire on July 16-18, has been cancelled by organisers, the RAF Charitable Trust Enterprises (RAFCTE).

RAFCTE Directors concluded that the ongoing uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 meant there were too many risks associated with pressing ahead with the airshow. It is the second year running the event has been unable to take place.

Air Tattoo CEO Paul Atherton said he and his team had been working hard during the past six months to explore ways in which the Air Tattoo could take place against the backdrop of the pandemic but, with five months to the event, there still remained too many unknowns.

“If we knew, with some degree of certainty what the situation would be in the summer,” he said, “we’d be able to plan ahead but, the truth is, we simply don’t know. We have reached a point where, to plan further, would involve us committing large sums of money to secure the event infrastructure. Without any insurance being available this year, this money would be lost if the airshow had to cancel nearer the time. It was simply too big a risk to take.

“I know how disappointed all those who are involved in the airshow will be, from our incredible army of volunteers and loyal ticketholders to our valued corporate guests, suppliers, traders and sponsors, as well as the many military air arms from around the globe, but I also know they will understand and support our decision. Public safety is paramount, and we also have a duty to protect the future of RIAT. By making this decision in a timely and controlled manner, we will be in a far stronger position to bounce back in 2022.”

Mr Atherton added that it was particularly disappointing to have to announce the cancellation of the airshow this year, the Air Tattoo’s 50th anniversary.

He said: “Everyone was looking forward to marking the Air Tattoo’s 50th at RAF Fairford in July and we had some great ideas as to how best to celebrate the incredible achievements of this much-loved event since it was first staged in 1971. We remain determined to identify new opportunities to mark this important milestone this year, both by building on the success of last year’s inaugural Virtual Air Tattoo as well as other exciting activities, where possible.”

All ticketholders for this summer’s Air Tattoo will be contacted by the end of February and offered either a refund or the opportunity to roll over their tickets to the 2022 Air Tattoo, which will take place on July 15-17.

www.airtattoo.com

RAF COSFORD AIR SHOW 2021 POSTPONED

Monday, February 8th, 2021

RAF Cosford Air Show

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, and the resulting short-term uncertainty for mass events, the RAF Cosford Air Show team have taken the difficult decision to postpone this year’s event, which was to be held on Sunday 13th June 2021.

Whilst the Air Show Team is disappointed to be in this position once again, they are already reviewing options to create a smaller, socially-distanced event across the weekend of the 11th and 12th September 2021. Further details will be announced through Air Show social media and the Air Show website www.cosfordairshow.co.uk once the position for mass events is clearer.

Air Show Director, Mr Clive Elliott, said, “The health and well-being of our visitors and serving personnel is always our top priority. The team is working hard to develop an event which will include many of the familiar Air Show highlights whilst keeping our visitors safe.”

Customers who have held onto their 2020 tickets can request a refund at www.cosfordairshow.co.uk/tickets or they will remain valid for the next Air Show event.

ROYAL NAVY INTERNATIONAL AIR DAY 2021 CANCELLED

Friday, February 5th, 2021

Yeovilton Air Day Cancelled

With great regret, we must announce that the Royal Navy International Air Day (RNIAD) will not take place this year as scheduled at RNAS Yeovilton, Somerset, on Saturday 10 July.

Due to the ongoing uncertainty with the COVID-19 pandemic and currentgovernment policy on large outdoor gatherings, the risks associated with hosting a large-scale international event in July is too significant for all parties involved. It is therefore with great disappointment that the Royal Navy has had to make the difficult decision to cancel their flagship public event.

The annual airshow welcomes over 35,000 visitors from across the UK and aviation enthusiasts from around the world as well as many aircraft from allied nations to participate in the extensive flying and static displays. The Royal Navy and AHA Events Ltd would like to take this opportunity to thank them, along with sponsors, exhibitors, service providers, station personnel and the many other stakeholders, for their continued support to the RNIAD and hope to welcome them back in 2022.

www.royalnavy.mod.uk/yeovilton-airday

Virtual Bournemouth Air Festival 2020

Sunday, August 2nd, 2020

Bournemouth Air Festival 2020

A ‘take off’ of a different kind has been planned for what would have normally been Bournemouth’s summer highlight the much anticipated 13th air festival. This year, the team behind the event have been working with Centre VR in Bournemouth to broadcast an online festival – celebrating all that is loved about it…on land, at sea, in the air and community fun!

Broadcasting online and via social media platforms, the Virtual Air Festival 2020 will be live Friday 21st, Saturday 22nd and Sunday 23rd August from Europe’s largest VR Centre with support from Live TV. Entertainment will have hourly themes including Friday’s Royal Navy, Night Air and Air Festival Celebrations, Saturday’s Royal Air Force hour, the Red Arrows and Festival Fun and Sunday’s Daredevil Flying, Vintage Hour, a not to be missed Army slot.

There’s also the chance to find out more about the festival’s armed forces nominated charities, the Soldiers Charity, Royal Navy Royal Marines Charity, Royal Air Force Association and RAF Benevolent Fund.

Cllr Vikki Slade Leader BCP Council said: “The air festival is an integral part of our events calendar one which is enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of people. We want to broaden the programme to reflect the plans for 2021 to appeal to a wider audience, engaging both residents and visitors. The team have worked really hard to make sure we don’t miss the air festival. It’s a shame we’re not on the beach but the line-up is impressive with something for everyone.”

Supported by Wave105, Daily Echo and Hotel Miramar (supporters of the Strikemaster Pair and vintage hour prize), there will also be an art and craft session with Martin Bridge, who famously created the air show in his back garden for his family which went viral at the start of ‘lockdown’, and a specially recorded acoustic music set from Roy Stride, lead singer from Scouting for Girls, who have previously appeared on the Wave105 ‘Night Air Stage’.

Squadron Leader Martin Pert, Red 1 and Team Leader of the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, the Red Arrows, said: “We’re delighted to be supporting the virtual Bournemouth Air Festival – it’s one of our favourite, best-attended venues of the display season, and if we can’t be over the Pier or at a meet-and-greet on this occasion we’ll be online, doing something a little different for 2020.”

Presented by Andy Marlor who has previously fronted Air Festival TV and everyone’s favourite, voice of the air festival, George Bacon, entertainment is live online. Viewers can engage with competitions, including the chance to win exclusive prints and even help to design next year’s brochure front cover, fancy dress Friday, online voting and Facebook Q&A sessions with star pilots! You can tune in on the hour and watch back online via the official YouTube channel Love Bournemouth – so you can pick and choose what you want to watch without having to watch it all day.

David Bailey, chairman of the BCP Destination Management Board said: “The tourism industry always looks forward to the air festival, the footfall, the incredible amount of money spent within the local economy and the chance for us to really showcase our wonderful resort. It’s important we keep going in these unprecedented times and a move for 2020 to a virtual event is going to be great fun – we are obviously looking forward to welcoming festival goers back next year. Huge thanks to everyone who has given their support including pilots, display teams the armed forces, local businesses and of course Centre VR for their incredible team, venue and technology!”

The Air Festival will be back 2nd-5th September 2021.

www.bournemouthair.co.uk/virtualair

Virtual Air Tattoo Attracts International Support

Tuesday, July 14th, 2020

RIAT

Air arms representing more than 20 countries from around the globe will be taking part in a special event this weekend being organised by the team behind the Royal International Air Tattoo and supported by the Royal Air Force.

The Virtual Air Tattoo is a free-to-view, live-streamed event that will take place from 11am to 3pm on Saturday July 18 and Sunday July 19, the same weekend the actual airshow was due to be staged.

Hosted by Air Tattoo commentators and aviation experts Ben Dunnell and Mark Manwaring and featuring special welcome messages from Sir David Jason and Carol Vorderman – the Virtual Air Tattoo will give viewers a flavour of the real event planned for 2020 with dramatic virtual flying displays, pilot interviews, special guests and unique aircraft footage.

Highlights include:
• Displays created by Virtual Airshows, performed by Europe’s top flight simulator pilots including the Virtual Red Arrows and Swiss, French and Italian teams.
• Footage from some of the most exciting Air Tattoo participants, including 2019 displays by the MiG-21 LanceR & EAV-8 Harrier.
• Live interviews with the Red Arrows as well as pilots from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and RAF Typhoon Display Team.
• Unique behind-the-scenes footage of military aviation including a flight on a recent Royal Air Force air-to-air refuelling mission.
• Messages, interviews and special aircraft tours courtesy of participating international aircrew.

And with tickets for next year’s 50th anniversary airshow going on sale at the weekend, the Virtual Air Tattoo will take a look back at some of the event’s aviation highlights since it was first stage in 1971.

Among the nations taking part in the Virtual Air Tattoo are Austria, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Jordan, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine, the US and UK – with Sri Lanka and Singapore being represented for the first time ever – albeit virtually! Video support for the Virtual Air Tattoo has also come from aerospace industry, including BAE Systems Leonardo, Airbus Northrop Grumman, MBDA and Rolls-Royce, with additional help from Boeing, Lockheed Martin and other long-term sponsors.

Whilst the Air Tattoo will deliver the main broadcast, the RAF will host two additional channels, one providing extended footage of RAF content featured in the Virtual Air Tattoo and the other, broadcast live on Twitch, hosted by the RAF’s Video Gaming and Esports Association who will be staging a number of socially-distanced esport competitions.

Working with PlanesTV, the programme will be hosted from a live studio and, as well as featuring special guests, the show will invite viewers’ questions via social media, making the Virtual Air Tattoo a truly interactive experience.

Air Tattoo Chief Executive Paul Atherton said: “The Royal Air Force has been a great partner for the virtual Air Tattoo as they are for the Royal International Air Tattoo each year. Their support in providing behind-the-scenes access to, and footage of, its aircraft, facilities and people has been pivotal and we now look forward to sharing this content with our online visitors. We are confident that this, coupled with the incredible material created by our international friends and the virtual world of air displays will wow our audiences.”

Air Chief Marshal Mike Wigston, Chief of the Air Staff, said: “I am delighted the Royal Air Force has joined forces with RAF Charitable Trust Enterprises to deliver a trailblazing Virtual Air Tattoo. We look forward to exhilarating displays from our allies around the world, getting behind the scenes with the RAF and our industry partners as we showcase our talent, and sharing special moments from previous Air Tattoos as we approach the airshow’s 50th anniversary next year.”

During the event, viewers will have the opportunity to donate to the Royal Air Force Charitable Trust, the Air Tattoo’s parent charity. Text TRUST to 70490 to donate £5 (Texts cost £5 plus one standard rate message). Also through Virgin Money Giving: https://bit.ly/rafcharitable

Click interested/going on our Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1379812842184720/

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/RIATOfficial

Bournemouth Air Festival Cancelled

Wednesday, May 13th, 2020

Chinook at Bournemouth Air Festival

Joint media release by BCP Council and Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch Destination Management Board

‘Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole take difficult decision to extend the cancellation of outdoor events until end of August 2020.

Major events and festivals including Bournemouth Air Festival that were due to go ahead this summer have been cancelled due to the continued impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

Responding to the government’s guidance on the outbreak, BCP Council – with support of the Destination Management Board – has taken the decision not to permit outdoor events on council public open space until the end of August 2020.

This includes, the cancellation of BCP Council organised events – the Bournemouth Air Festival, Summer Fireworks and summer events programme on Poole Quay. Other events that have had to be cancelled include BSO Concerts in Meyrick Park and Christchurch Food Festival.

Councillor Vikki Slade, Leader of BCP Council, said; “Our immensely popular summer events programme, including the Bournemouth Air Festival, attracts millions of visitors to the area bringing over £32 million income to our local businesses and supports the council’s services through our seafront offering.

“In response to the recent government guidance around the easing of lockdown, it will no longer be possible that events planned to take place this summer in public outdoor open space can go ahead.

“Cancelling major events and festivals is a decision we don’t take lightly. The most important consideration is the health of our residents, and the safety of everyone involved including visitors, festival-goers, exhibitors, traders, staff, contractors, and the many more who contribute and play a part in delivering those much-loved events.

 “Our NHS and emergency services have coped incredibly well during the Covid-19 pandemic and we would not want to risk this changing, or to try to manage events whilst adhering to government measures and advice including on social distancing.

“The government’s guidance indicated that hospitality businesses are not likely to open before July. We know there are many hotels, restaurants, bars and local contractors serving this industry whose livelihoods rely on the summer events programme and we want to assure those businesses – including the 17,000 plus people employed in this sector – that BCP Council will do everything we can to support you and work together with you to come through this.

“We’re looking at every feasible option to help to sustain this industry, and with this we have already committed to deliver a refreshed Air Festival in 2021.”
BCP Council and Destination Management Board for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole will continue to work together in lobbying central government to ensure this vital sector is fully supported through the national recovery plan.

David Bailey, Chairman of the Destination Management Board, said; “The Board fully understands the decision taken by BCP Council. It is very important that as the Destination of Bournemouth Christchurch and Poole we show we are taking the sensible measures and demonstrate that in the future we want to offer visitors and residents the safest environment to enjoy the unique tourism and hospitality offer. We thank BCP Council for its continued support and the confirmation of next year’s Bournemouth Air Festival.”

A Bournemouth Air Festival for next year has been confirmed for Thursday 2nd to Sunday 5th September 2021.

Dougie Scarfe, Chief Executive, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, “Our Proms in the Park concerts hosted in partnership with BCP Council are always a highlight of the summer season in Bournemouth; with audiences dancing away to our live music, the series is always a celebratory moment in the BSO year. We know that loyal audiences will be sorry to miss the party this year, and we’ll miss you all too, but we look forward to seeing you next year for a spectacular celebration”.

www.bournemouthair.co.uk

ROYAL NAVY INTERNATIONAL AIR DAY 2020 CANCELLED

Monday, March 23rd, 2020

Yeovilton Air Day 2020 Cancelled

Following many months of planning, we regret to inform you that the Royal Navy International Air Day 2020 has been cancelled. The show was due to take place at RNAS Yeovilton, Somerset, on Saturday 11 July.

This decision to cancel has been made as a prudent measure and in accordance with Government guidance on Covid-19. We are making sensible and proportionate adjustments to non-essential activity, these decisions are made on a case by case basis to minimise the impact of Covid-19. Our priority has always been to deliver a safe and enjoyable event for our patrons. In times of such unprecedented uncertainty, the Royal Navy, RNAS Yeovilton and AHA Events Ltd have had to make the difficult decision to cancel the Royal Navy International Air Day 2020.

All tickets purchased will be refunded – more details to follow in due course. In the meantime, we ask for your patience while we undertake this process due to current working conditions. Updates will be made via email and our social media channels.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused and would like to take this opportunity to thank our loyal patrons, sponsors, exhibitors, participants, emergency services, contractors, station personnel and the many other stakeholders for their continued support in making Air Day the success it has become.

www.royalnavy.mod.uk/yeovilton-airday.

RAF COSFORD TO POSTPONE 2020 AIR SHOW

Monday, March 23rd, 2020

RAF Cosford Air Show Postponed

Further to recent updates from Her Majesty’s Government on the response to the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak, we have taken the very difficult decision to postpone the 2020 RAF Cosford Air Show which was to be held on Sunday 14th June.

The success of the Air Show relies on many organisations coming together to provide a safe and enjoyable show, given the timescale and current situation we cannot guarantee normality by June. We must also accept that our emergency services need to concentrate on the matter in hand and not be distracted by non-essential activity such as Air Show support.

Although we are disappointed to be in this position, we believe it is the right decision to protect the health and well-being of our visitors and serving personnel; this is, and always will be, our top priority.

We want to reassure customers who have purchased tickets that they will be valid for the new date which is still to be arranged. Customers who cannot make the new date will be able to use their tickets for the 2021 show. There will be a refund process in place for those who wish to cancel completely. Please be patient whilst we set this process up.

The reasons that have led to postponing the Air Show mean that we are extremely busy and that we will not be able to take phone calls at this time. However, if you need to contact us, please email admin@cosfordairshow.co.uk or message us through our Facebook page. We will continue to post updates to our website and repost to social media.

www.cosfordairshow.co.uk

RIAT 2020 Cancelled

Friday, March 20th, 2020

RIAT

It is with enormous regret and disappointment that we have to announce the cancellation of this year’s Royal International Air Tattoo, due to take place from 17 to 19 July, as a result of the challenging and unprecedented environment presented by COVID-19.

This decision has not been taken lightly and a significant amount of work sits behind this course of action. The crisis, which is worsening by the day, and the implications of which are becoming more profound, has led us to conclude that the most prudent course of action is to cease any further planning to deliver this significant event.

The Air Tattoo is reliant on the support of a wide range of stakeholders, not least the participation of international air arms, medical professionals, military security teams and our Emergency Services, many of whom are delivering a fundamental contribution to fighting this crisis. We believe delivery of our event would distract them from this.

At the heart of this difficult decision is our firm belief that staging the Air Tattoo this year would not only run counter to the current Government advice but would also be beyond what we could reasonably ask of our supporters. We recognise that our decision will have a negative financial impact on our valued suppliers and traders, on the local economy that benefits so much from the large influx of people who arrive in the area for one week in July, as well as on our parent charity. For this we apologise.

We would like to thank all our partners, the RAF, USAF, sponsors, the world’s air forces, our amazing volunteers and of course the public who turn up year on year to support our magnificent event. We seek your patience and encouragement over the next few weeks as we plan for the future in order to return in 2021 to celebrate the Air Tattoo’s 50th Anniversary.

www.airtattoo.com