MORE than 50 aircraft and more than five hours of flying each day are promised at this year’s Shoreham Airshow.
Special features include marking the 75th anniversary Battle of Britain, although the Lancaster is unlikely to appear this year as it was grounded following a fire in June.
The news followed last year’s disappointment, when the only two airworthy Lancasters in the world were due to fly together at Shoreham but one had to pull out at the last minute.
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Flying display director Rod Dean said despite the obvious disappointment for visitors last year, the loss of the Lancaster did have a positive effect for the charity.
He admitted: “We had a super year last year. Being totally mercenary about it, the fact that the Canadian Lancaster ‘went tech’ on the day before the show actually just added £12,000 to the bottom line. This year, we believe, we are going to have a show that can match last year, which I think everyone agrees was the most popular show that we have put on.
“We are going back to the traditional Battle of Britain Scramble.
“Last year, we turned Shoreham into a German airfield in northern France and had the Spitfires and Mustangs attacking while the 109s defended.
“This really upset Dad’s Army because the re-enactors did not have a role to play in it. So, to keep them happy, this year we are going back to the traditional scramble, with two Buchons, two Spitfires and two Hurricanes.
“We are also going to go on and look at the other veteran of that campaign that is still flying, the Blenheim. It will be delightful to see the Blenheim down here at Shoreham for its display.”
The RAF Falcons parachute display team, a real crowd pleaser, will appear both days, and the Eurofighter Typhoon will visit late on Sunday.
New on the programme is the Junkus 52M, the German transport aircraft from the Second World War.
“My aim is to put that and the C-47 together as the two transport aircraft from both sides of the conflict,” said Mr Dean.
“We may even end up with them in formation, but they will certainly both fly together in the same piece of sky.”
Last year was the world’s first display featuring a full-size and model aircraft flying in formation.
This year, they will have the same colour scheme, so it will be difficult to tell them apart.
The Great War Display Team will fly ten aircraft, which will give a good impression of the kind of dog fights that went on in the First World War.
Mr Dean said: “I always try to put together some different formations.
“This year I am looking at a unique formation of Curtiss fighters, the Hawk 75, P-40C, P-40F, P36 and the P-40M from the Hangar 11 Collection.
“Ace pilot Justyn Gorman, who is based at Shoreham Airport, will fly his CAP232 and Guy Westergate returns with his Fox glider and paraglider.
“Peter Troy-Davis, who has not been to Shoreham before, will demonstrate his Rotorsport Calidus autogyro with 30ft streamer at the back, making the display even more interesting.”
When it comes to fast jets, Shoreham sees the welcome return of the Royal Navy Sea Vixen and the Jet Provost T5.
Other displays include Tiger 9 with their Tiger Moths, Navy support with the RNHF Swordfish, the Navy’s only historical aircraft, the Sea Vixen both days and The Blades formation, celebrating their tenth anniversary.
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