Monday, 20 November 2017

20.XI.17 - George and Mabel.

TD314 "St. George" residing at DX for the time being...










Joined by EE602 "Mabel". A new resident (temporarily) in H3, having moved from Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar...








Wednesday, 1 November 2017

The "Dragon" goes aloft...

Post lunch saunter today was timed to coincide with PT462 taking someone up for a "jolly". The vigorous arm waving on his approach for landing might have indicated his elation...









NH341 sans Merlin

NH341 "Elizabeth" parked up in the corner of H2N without her engine - cracked sump resulting in oil leak. 
Hopefully back in the air soon...

The new Ace Café?

Harley Davidson Motorbikelists outing decided to call in for lunch in the OM...


Monday, 23 October 2017

Many hours of boredom, minutes of sheer terror...

Seeing the 'new' old wooden dispersal hut now in place at Headcorn, had me looking through the batch of photos kindly sent to me by the family of S/L John Niven DFC* of 602/322/485 Squadrons. 
One in particular features a very similar wooden hut with some members of the 602 (City Of Glasgow) RAuxAF taking it easy at Kenley in June 1942. 
S/L Paddy Finucane was CO at this point, sitting 4th from right, and a month after this photo was taken, he was lost over the Channel returning from sorties against German shipping off Ostend...












When the Aero Legends building is finished, it would be quite an evocative sight to have some well worn armchairs sat out in the sun, a brass/bronze "Scramble" bell hanging from the wall and Spitfires TD314 and NH341 sat within dashing distance...




Saturday, 21 October 2017

21.X.17 :: Headcorn Aerodrome - Aero Legends

Took a trip down to Headcorn Aerodrome (formerly RAF Lashenden) to the "Sit-In" event, jointly arranged by "The Two Seat Spitfire Page" and Aero Legends, operators of Spitfire T9 NH341 "Elizabeth" and MkIX TD314 "St. George".
Interesting talk from Nick Oram about the history of NH341 and TD314 and some of the pilots who flew NH341 while she was with 411 Sqn RCAF. Flt Lt Anthony "Parky" Parkinson MBE was also on hand (having flown "St. George" down to Headcorn today) to do a Q&A session and share his experiences flying with the BBMF and The Red Arrows. 
The base for the event was Aero Legends newly acquired WW2 era wooden "dispersal/scramble" hut, obtained from the former RAF Bridgnorth station, and now in situ at Headcorn. Apart from a few finishing touches, once completed, the hut will provide a place for participants and visitors in the various flying packages to be briefed and relax. It certainly came in handy with the heavy downpours that were blowing through!
Unfortunately NH341 developed an oil leak due to a cracked sump and the engine has been removed a few days previously, so the winner of the "Fly-In-NH341" draw will have to wait until the 2018 season. It wasn't me... :o(
The event was well attended and even though the weather gods were doing their best with "Brian" heading towards Kent, the sun did shine for a good part of the day and for the Merlin engine run. 







Monday, 16 October 2017

16.IX.17 : Spitfire T9 PT462 H2N DX

Going to be an even more regular sight now...

Will be sad to see this space empty before long...


Fury squatting in MH434's usual spot...

Friday, 13 October 2017

Carolyn Grace retires/ML407 Supporters Group ends...

Having just returned from a few days away, I was saddened to open a letter from Carolyn Grace announcing that she has taken the hard decision to bring to an end the "Grace Spitfire Supporters Group", due partly to diminishing membership.
She has also decided to end her flying career - ML407 will of course continue to operate with Richard Grace at the 'stick'.
I've been glad to help support, in the little way I have, the operation of ML407 and hope she continues to grace the skies for many more years.
Enjoy your retirement Carolyn.




Monday, 9 October 2017

Another T9 for Duxford

Spitfire PT462 / G-CTIX has been sold to the Aircraft Restoration Company and is joining their fleet at Duxford.





Thursday, 28 September 2017

Duxford OM in red...

The Virginia Creeper on the front of the Officers Mess putting on an autumnal display...


Monday, 25 September 2017

13 Spitfire tail chase...


13 Spitfire Tail Chase Duxford BoB Airshow 24.IX.17 from warbirdskies on Vimeo.

Spitfire T9 quartet...

With another T9, PT462, tucked up in H2N, there were five of the eight UK-based airworthy two seat Spitfires, all on one airfield at the same time...
Here is a short video of the others, ML407, PV202, SM520 and NH341 taxiing out...


T9s Taxi from warbirdskies on Vimeo.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

24.IX.17 - DX BOB Show

4 x T9s together.....

Overall a good end to the season. A few gaps in the programme due to the strong crosswind and a obvious lack of Mustangs after yesterday's nibble on the tail of Miss Helen by Sharkmouth. 
The sight of six Hurricanes all in one patch of sky was something to behold - a few years back we'd be excited at the sight of two!!! And a thirteen Spitfire tail chase was awesome to hear and see.



RNHF Sea Fury T.20 

Norwegian AF Historical Sqn MiG15 UTI Red18, Vampires FB52 and T55

Blenheim Mk1, 3xMk1 Spitfires, 5xHurricanes and Gladiator

Friday, 18 August 2017

DX 18.VII.17 - not all Spitfires grounded...

PV202 was still operating today as were other civilian operated Spitfires. Hopefully BBMF will sort out their issues soon. 
In H2N Sea Fury FB11 G-CBEL was roosting alongside Hurricane Mk1 P2902 - Hawkers first piston engined monoplane and their last...




Wednesday, 12 July 2017

DX 12.VII.17 - catch up

Couple of photos from today and from Saturday…
Clipped wing Spitfire 
"Casualties" from the weekend...

A very nice Morris Minor van all the way from Oz...

Good to see SimplySpitfire's MK805 back on duty...



Sunday, 9 July 2017

Miss Velma forced landing

Reports of Mustang TF-51D Miss Velma suffering engine failure and having to make an emergency landing in the field on the opposite side of the M11 while displaying at FL17. Pilot okay. Aircraft damaged and reports are her landing gear was down - image on Twitter shows her on her belly so not sounding good for levels of damage.

UPDATE: MV recovered back to H2 at Duxford via low loader and the A505 - photo online of her on her 'legs' outside the hangar - damaged wings, prop, airscoop, broken canopy - hopefully the landing gear got tucked up before impact. Wonder if the relatively flat field full of wheat acted as a 'cushion' reducing damage?

Sad news to hear on the 10th anniversary year of her arriving at Duxford after her trans Atlantic crossing. 
Not a good weekend for Mustangs that have flown over the "Pond"…

Hopefully the damage can be repaired soon and she can return to flight…


Credit: Paul Tolliday: Blue Sky Aerial Services



Hopes shattered...

I had been looking forward to seeing The Horsemen routine with the P-51B Berlin Express but sadly they cancelled their slot on Saturday due to the canopy on the P-51B shattering as Nick Grey flew her on a fast pass along the airfield.
Thankfully Nick landed and some damage resulted to the tail surfaces - the Malcolm Hood sadly ended up in a thousand pieces over the airfield.
After a journey of nearly 5000 nm across half of the US and large expanses of ocean without missing a beat, BE was due to be a highpoint for myself at FL17.
Hopefully I will be able to catch her in the air before she returns to Texas.


Saturday, 8 July 2017

Flying Legends 2017 - Saturday

Some photos from todays air show…

Starting with the 357th Fighter Group 'pair' - Frenesi and Berlin Express







Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Couple more from today...