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Canadian Lancaster to visit UK in August 2014!

Discussion in 'Everything Else Heritage' started by 5944, Feb 24, 2014.

  1. big.stu

    big.stu Member

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    Yup. Very fortunate to have had 4 or 5 flights with 5 AEF when it was at Marshalls in the mid 80s - mostly in Chipmunks, but the very first time I took the controls was in their Husky, much to the consternation of the other cadets in the rear seats who knew it was my first time flying an aircraft! Instructor did all the tricky stuff (takeoff, landing, etc) but let me fly it to Duxford (where he took over and did a low level run along the flight line) and back again.

    The most fun was had if you got the "Wing Co" (allegedly an ex-WW2 Spitfire pilot) who just needed to hear the words "I fancy some aerobatics today, sir" to then spend the next half hour throwing you all over the Cambridgeshire sky, sometimes letting you fly some of the manoeuvres - certainly remember being allowed to loop and barrel roll it (though I suspect his hands and feet were never far from the controls).

    Happy days, but sadly that still accounts for my total flying experience in light aircraft…"I have control, sir"
     
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  2. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    My Chipmunk experience was either at Plymouth (RN pilots if I remember correctly) and Shawbury when on annual camp. All good fun :)
     
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  3. martin butler

    martin butler Member

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    only chance i had to fly, was in a mates dad's tiger moth, we used to help him look after it, and he taught us the basics, my friend was in the air cadets, and often would take the controls, but one day, i was offered a flight, and during this, i flew it straight and level, did a few turns, etc, but had to hand it back to land, even after i had lined us up:( , i wanted to join the cadets also, but was told it wasnt cool, biggest mistake i had made.:(
     
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  4. big.stu

    big.stu Member

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    At school it was either one of the CCF sections or 'community service' for one afternoon a week. I never could understand the attraction of the Army or Navy sections as we all had to do basic drill and weapons training (Lee Enfield .303s), but then the Army just trudged around carrying lots of equipment, the Navy played on a large pond with a couple of little dinghies, whereas those of us in the RAF section actually got to go flying!

    And proud to say I never had to use the paper bag...
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2014
  5. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Well-Known Member

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    Vera still in Iceland, maybe tomorrow for the next leg to Narsaaraq Greenland
     
  6. Duty Druid

    Duty Druid Part of the furniture

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  7. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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  8. Duty Druid

    Duty Druid Part of the furniture

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    You're not wrong!

    Bonus that its on me doorstep!
     
  9. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    So how many are they planning on? From memory, a couple of years ago at Duxford there were 15 Spitfires, a Seafire and four Hurricanes - plus the BBMF pair, I can't remember now whether they were in addition or included in those numbers. Whichever it was, it was a bl**dy lot of them!

    Tom
     
  10. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    2010 saw 17 Spits and one Seafire do a group routine and another turned up with the BBMF. That's the most I've seen at a single show. I think five Hurricanes is my max.
     
  11. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    I still remember the Battle of Britain 50th at Biggin Hill, when they did a 'Big Wing' as part of the display. Was watching on tv, then heard a roar.

    Shot out of the door, and the whole lot flew right over the house. I don't remember how many, but I have a half memory of 36. Can that be right?
     
  12. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Gosh, was it as long ago as 2010! :eek: #GettingOld ...

    DSC_0213.JPG

    Tom
     
  13. Duty Druid

    Duty Druid Part of the furniture

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    I haven't got a clue - all I do know, they'll scare the cr_p out of the traffic on the A40! :eek:

    If there is that little lot - just how many are UK based - some or all?........ I also read somewhere recently, there's 6 replica's being built as we speak!
     
  14. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    "Only" 16 in the shot. Seems the Seafire and one other has escaped somewhere.

     
  15. big.stu

    big.stu Member

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    Well according to that ever reliable source, Wikipedia, there are currently 27 Spitfires, 1 Seafire, 5 Hurricanes and 1 Sea Hurricane currently airworthy in the UK:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_surviving_Supermarine_Spitfires#United_Kingdom
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_surviving_Hawker_Hurricanes#United_Kingdom

    The lists look plausible to me, to the extent of my knowledge plus a quick trawl around a few websites (BBMF,ARCo,HFL,TFC,OFMC,HAC,BHHH)

    6+2 at BBMF, 11+1 at Duxford?, 4+1 at Biggin Hill?, 2+1 at North Weald? 1+1 at Shuttleworth? 1 Spit at RR (presume the other one won't be restored in time for this)

    Thats 25+4 at the main sites I can immediately think of (some more Spits at Goodwood maybe?) - must be some more dotted around in single locations.
     
  16. Duty Druid

    Duty Druid Part of the furniture

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    There's one stuffed & mounted at Northolt that used to be at RAF Uxbridge, though for the life of me I can't remember if its the real thing or a 3/4 replica................. :rolleyes:

    So are there any Spits & Hurricanes abroad that could also come to the party?.......
     
  17. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    The one at Northolt is a full size plastic replica. There are probably 5 Spitfires and two Seafires in the USA and Canada, plus a couple of Hurricanes.
     
  18. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Worldwide, I believe there are 60-odd Spitfires in flying condition - more than at any time since, probably, the 1950s. The issue is the cost of getting any of them over here though!

    Also probably a law of diminishing returns. To turn one Lancaster to two gives a pretty big financial advantage to get Vera over, despite the expense. Much harder to make a financial case to get a Spitfire or two over from the US or New Zealand if it is the difference between 24 or 25 being airborne at once.

    Tom
     
  19. big.stu

    big.stu Member

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    Definitely. Wikipedia totals are 53 Spitfire/Seafires and 13 (Sea) Hurricanes worldwide, some of which (the European ones) would be plausible attendees - the US/Canadian & Australasian ones might be more interesting, but you can stick them in a container...
     
  20. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Plus all those ones underground in Burma :rolleyes:

    Tom
     

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