1st April 2014
A quiet but hot day at Duxford and not an April Fool in sight. The only war bird movements was in the afternoon when TFC had a bit of a reshuffle in the eastern end of their hangar. In the order they were taken.
Camera Used: Sony Alpha A57 SLT + Sony16-105mm/f3.5-5.6 Lens & Sony Alpha A35 SLT & Sony 70-300mm G SSM/f4.5-5.5 Lens
Last update for April and it was a moving day at Duxford. The ARCo war birds in hangar 2/north-east were being moved outside and parked on the grass and jet pan as B-17 'Sally-B' was emerging from her winter hibernation into the warm spring sunshine. Once parked next to the Shackleton, low rev engine runs were conducted for about 30 minutes. During the afternoon the wingtips were reattached. The British Antarctic Survey Twin Otter went for a trip to the north and was following the M11 back to Duxford as I was heading home north along it. Later in the afternoon, TFC came out to play with the Harvard and Bearcat having engine runs out on the airfield.
2nd April 2014
The Fighter Collection were out to play again with the Hawk 75 parked on the airfield for an engine run and blowing away of the winter cobwebs. With the haze, or was it Shahran sand, lighting conditions for photography were far from ideal.
3rd April 2014
Despite the haze and terrible lighting conditions continuing, there was enough visibility for The Fighter Collection Carbon Cub to get airborne for a short flight and a pair of visiting Dutch GA aircraft to touch down at Duxford and the visiting Nation Grid helicopter to make a spirited take off with a bit of top side before it flew off to the south. Following the first flight of Spitfire N3200 at the end of last month, it was moved late yesterday into temporary storage in hangar 3.
5th April 2014
There was a stiff breeze blowing acrosss the airfield that not only cleared away the horrible haze but made for some interesting take off and landings from any aircraft flying. The ARACo Harvard 'Taz', was moonlighting with Classic Wings and later in the afternoon, the Nord N.1002 Pingouin(Me.108) went for a local flight.
8th April 2014
A bright, sunny but blustery day at Duxford and a bit of war bird movement this morning when the HAC Hurricane was trundled up from ARCo to 3 hangar and P-51 'Ferocious Frankie went back in the opposite direction. Plenty Easter holiday activities taking place in AirSpace with plenty of children building Airfix kits, trying on uniforms etc. and next to the psychedelically lit Avro York an opportunity to drive a remote control tank around an obstacle course. They said I was to old to have a go. Early afternoon and the Me.108 went flying again.
9th April 2014
A busy day at Duxford with lots of visiting GA aircraft taking advantage of the light wind and sunshine. Center stage was the two Mk.1 Spitfires that went down to ARCo with John Romain taking N3200 for a flight in the afternoon. P9374 hadn't flown by the time I left. Just as N3200 was starting up, Cliff Spink flew in with the Desert Buchon with some aerobatics over the airfield before landing. The Me.108 was airbourne again with two flights. Having traveled down to ARCo the day before, 'Ferocious Frankie' was moved back to 3 hangar.
10th April 2014
Another day of war bird action with the Me.108 having a couple of flights during the day. Late afternoon and John Romain took the Desert Buchon, that arrived yesterday, for a flight to the north with some aerobatics over the airfield on his return. Half an hour later and he was in the cockpit of Spitfire Mk.1a/N3200 and after a trip to the north he was back over the airfield with more aerobatics and a missed approach before landing. An Apache spent about half an hour doing circuits and wing overs late morning and I think it's the only time I've been able to get a side view showing the serial, ZJ224, on the tail.
14th April 2014
With ARCo having provided the entertainment last week, today it was the turn of The Fighter Collection with their Bearcat, Wildcat and Harvard parked among the daisies on the airfield having engine runs after a bit of winter TLC. There were a few GA types taking advantage of the nice weather with a visit to Duxford with the Auster V/(G-ALXZ) showing off its newly acquired desert camouflage scheme.
16th April 2014
With a Bank Holiday coming up this weekend, I don't suppose this sunshine and good weather is going to last much longer. Again the museum was packed with visitors and car parking space at a premium with the grass verges being used. Today there was a stiff cross wind blowing across the airfield which made for some interesting one wing low landings from the visiting King Air and and the Classic Wings Rapide and the Tiger Moth was making a normal approach along the grass runway and then a quick flick to the left to land into wind. The TFC Bearcat was outside for a brief spell in the sunshine and in the afternoon the ARCo Harvard 'Taz' was flying circuits. Inside AirSpace, roadies were setting up a stage for the L’Oréal Colour Trophy Hairdressing Regional Final. Come tomorrow all that will be gone and you would never know they had been there.
17th April 2014
A busy day at Duxford. The Silver Spitfire/SM845 went for a short test flight and as it was landing it was followed in by a pretty little Luscombe that had popped in from Popham and the desert camouflaged T.28 was also flying with a nice display over the airfield. Between 13.00 & 14.00hrs the airfield was closed as an emergency services exercise took place. The Cessna 172 had a mid air collision over the airfield and managed to land safely with the other aircraft crashing. Airfield service were first on the scene with Cambridgeshire emergency service following a little bit later. TFC had their Spitfire Mk 1/P7308 out for an engine run first in the morning and another in the afternoon. For most of the day Spitfire Mk 1/N3200 was taking part in a TV shoot and despite the rather brusque manner in which I was spoken to outside hangar 2, I'll comply with the request not to post any of those photos but N3200 flying is fair game.
18th April 2014
For some reason I kept thinking it was Saturday today and the forecast of warm sunshine and clear blue skies turned into a cold wind and wall to wall clouds but then again it is a Bank Holiday weekend. Pete Kynsey took the Bearcat for its first flight this year with a handling sortie to the north before returning to Duxford with some aerobatics over the airfield before landing. The Mk1 Spitfire/N3200 was back in hangar 3 after its staring role in a TV programme that was being recorded the day before and despite some reports I had read that it had left, the silver Spitfire/SM840 could be seen through the open hangar doors down at ARCo. A few GA visitors today with the visiting Pitts catching my eye and as I was leaving a Spitfire T9 flew in with a run and break and landing.
19th April 2014
Actually felt like a Saturday today and although quiet, flying wise, during the afternoon there were a few GA visitors with the TRIG team having their first display of the season at Santa Pod.
23rd April 2014
A bit of war bird movement at Duxford today, but not of the flying kind. The TFC Bearcat, sporting a natty go-faster drop tank, was outside first thing for a spot of fuel. In the afternoon, the Classic Wings blue Harvard/G-BUKY was pulled out of 3 hangar/west so Spitfire/MH434 could be extracted and the Harvard was put back. After MH434 had gone down to ARCO, a short time later Spitfire T9/SM520 came back in the opposite direction and after a bit of a shuffle with Spitfire I/N3200, SM520 joined the other 3 Spitfire's in hangar 3/east.
27th April 2014
The Sunday Fighter Collection volunteers had a busy day as they played musical aeroplanes with their war birds in the eastern end of the hanger to get the Hawk 75 out onto the airfield and the Beech Staggerwing into the sunshine as well. Early afternoon and the Hawk 75 went for a 35 minute test/handling flight to the north of Cambridgeshire and on its return, a bit of aerobatics over the airfield. Unfortunately dark clouds and a bit of a rain front passed over Duxford during the display. With winter approaching in the Antarctic, the British Antarctic Survey Twin Otter is back for the British summer and is parked on the grass outside ARCo.