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  Battle of Britain Air Show 2022
  Part 1
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Text:

Urs Schnyder

Pictures:

Urs Schnyder & Michael E. Fader

   

This years Battle of Britain Airshow was of course overshadowed by the death of the Queen which also had an impact on the program. As the RAF stood down, the Battle of Britain flight was obviously unable to appear.  As is usual for an airshow, there were also some absences, due to non serviceability of aircraft or pilots. This was unfortunately also true for the Royal Navy Historic Flight. Another ingredient of any airshow is the weather. After a dry hot summer it was up to its usual antics with some nasty surprises in the form of rainshowers.

Static

The lineup along the taxiway was quite long and interesting. The flightline walk was this time included in the ticket price and didnít have to be paid extra as in past years. While the Saturday morning was dry, on Sunday morning the fog was so thick that you could more sense than actually see the aircraft on display. This cleared later in the morning.

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Reenactors

What is a historic airshow without reenactors, or living historians as they call themselves. The group Spirit of Britain is a group of like minded individuals who spend a lot of their time researching the part of history they display. Their outfits are either original items or where these are not available they are carefully recreated using the original materials. The men in the group are displaying RAF crew from No. 19 Squadron based at Duxford during the Battle. They were recognisable by their yellow painted Mae vests.

 

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

 

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Farewell to the Queen / NSH Spitfire

In a change to the official programme, the show was to start at eight minutes past one with a two minute of silence in respect of the late Queen. At ten past one, the silence was broken by the sound of a Rolls Royce Merlin belonging to the Supermarine Spitfire PR XI of the Aircraft Restauration Company, popularly known as the NHS Spitfire.

   

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

   

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Supermarine Spitfire PR XI (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Redtails

This North American P-51D Mustang is unique in that it is basically the same as it was built. It never had a major rebuild done to it. It was assigned to the 99th Fighter Squadron of the 332th Fighter group in Italy, better known as the Tuskeegee Airmen. They were exclusively manned by Americans of African descend, both pilots and ground crews. Their aircraft were all marked with a red painted tail unit, which gave them the name Redtails.

This Mustang served in the US Air Force until 1956 and then went to private owners before being acquired by Hangar 11 in 2001 and restored to its original wartime scheme.

   

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51D Mustang  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Eastern Front Formation

The eastern front of the war was represented by two Hispano Buchons and a Yak 3uti. Due to the Russian aggression on Ukraine, the Yak had its Russian insignia painted out and replaced by Ukrainian emblems.

The Buchons are of course Veterans of the Battle of Britain film that were brought back to Britain, after having survived for years in a Barn in Texas. The Buchons and the Yak were not actually flying together, but had two separate slots to display.

   

CASA HA-1112 Buchon (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

Yakovlev Yak 3UTI (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Yakovlev Yak 3UTI (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Yakovlev Yak 3UTI (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Yakovlev Yak 3UTI (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

Yakovlev Yak 3UTI (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

CASA HA-1112 Buchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Boeing B-17G "Sally B"

Not much needs to be said about the Boeing B-17 Sally B. She has now been based at Duxford for the last 47 years, after being used as a survey aircraft in the US and France.

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

 

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

The Mercury Formation

The Mercury refers of course to the Bristol Mercury engine that powered the Gloster Gladiator, the Westland Lysander and the Bristol Blenheim. Besides their engines, they have not much in common as they were designed to completely different specifications. The Gladiator was of course the RAFís last biplane fighter which despite its obsolescence saw wide service at the beginning of the war. The Lysander was designed as an Army cooperation aircraft. It was not much used in that role but came into itís own for dropping agents into enemy territory. The all black Lysander of the Shuttleworth collection is portraying such an aircraft.

The Blenheim was a leader when it appeared, being faster than most of the biplane fighters then in operation. However, by the start of the war it had lost its superiority and its crews paid the price.

   

Bristol Blenheim(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Bristol Blenheim (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 
   

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Gloster Gladiator (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Gloster Gladiator (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Gloster Gladiator (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

Gloster Gladiator (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Westland Lysander (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Westland Lysander (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Westland Lysander (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

Bristol Blenheim (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Bristol Blenheim (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Bristol Blenheim (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Bristol Blenheim (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

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last update 24. September 2022

Written 21. September 2022

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