AIRSHOWS & SPECIAL EVENTS
By Peter Hampson
I’ve always been a big fan of Airshows and over the years I’ve been fortunate to visit many either as a spectator, photographer, journalist, commentator or organiser!
Being Manchester born and bred I remember well the Woodford and Barton shows – the very good and occasionally the very bad. However, I have no doubt whatsoever that it was the excitement of these airshows in the seventies and eighties that helped cement my life long interest in aviation.
Memories of long traffic queues to get in (and out!) and of course our glorious British weather which we could always rely on for a surprise or two! All of which however, become insignificant when I recall watching the iconic Concorde (G-BSST) and the mighty Vulcan display at Woodford or, being on board a BAC 1-11 as it “almost” did a touch and go at Barton. Did I really hang on (literally) inside the back of an RAF Herc photographing the Para’s from the open ramp as they replicated a No 1 Para WWII low level training jump over Ringway and Tatton Park. All bring back very special memories.
Throughout my working years I progressed from reporting on them and running trips to them to actually helping to organise them!
Oh, the relief when your procedures and safety cases are approved by the CAA and that final display aircraft touches down or takes off safely into the blue yonder.
With the passing of time there have been significant improvements to Airshow safety and procedures. Fortunately, accidents at such events,(which were once common place) are now very rare. However, the thrills of capturing “through the lens” many different aircraft – old and new, fast and slow, high and low has never left me and the increasing popularity of such events, throughout the world, is clear evidence that my personal passion is well shared.
Whilst the number of airshows and special events may well have dwindled they still remain very special and more recently have taken on a different personality as we reflect, commemorate and celebrate our great aviation history.
Below you will find a series of abbreviated reports and photos from some classic airshows and events I’ve attended (in one capacity or another) from around the world. The purpose being to perhaps tempt you to attend an airshow in the future and may be assist you with your planning in terms of which one will meet your own needs?
If you would like to submit a short report for this section please send to:-
To read the reports please scroll down. Unless otherwise stated all reports, the views / opinions contained within them and photographs are by Peter Hampson.
For those interested I use Canon photographic equipment. For airshows it tends to be the EOS-1D X Camera,300mm F/2.8L Prime and 100-400mm,24-105mm Telephoto zoom lenses.