UK Tour: Getting Into The Swing Of Things

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Airbus A380, over France.

I mentioned in our last blog post that our 2014 UK Tour is probably going to be pretty hectic, and we’ve certainly found that it has been over the first few days of the tour. After a gruelling 29 hour flight half way around the world, and a couple of days spent getting over the jet lag, our tour began late last week, and we’ve now more or less found our feet and have been getting organised. We’ve already had the chance to attend a show and visit several museums that were on our ‘To Do’ lists — hopefully we’re now at the point where we can make more frequent updates here and keep you all up to date with what we’re up to on the tour.

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Lancaster bomber at Royal Air Force Museum, London

A visit to the R.A.F. Museum in London on Saturday the 9th August was an enjoyable way to get into the swing of things. For those who have not been here before it was interesting to find that we had to pay for the car parking, but that entry to the museum itself was free. That’s certainly a great way to encourage visitors to the facility, and we’re sure that we’ll make a repeat visit if we can fit it in. It was great to be able to spend a bit of time looking around the museum’s Avro Lancaster — this being hopefully the first of four Lancasters that we’ll get to see during this trip. The only disappointment with the trip to Hendon was that the Grahame White building which houses the bulk of the World War One aircraft collection was closed. It’s currently being refurbished in order to re-open before Armistice Day (11th November) this year, though it does seem an odd timetable when it is now essentially the 100th anniversary of the start of World War One — we expected that the refurbishment would have been completed well before now.

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Thunderclouds over Shuttleworth

One of the highlights of our trip was to be the WW1 Commemoration Airshow at Shuttleworth on the 10th of august, but unfortunately the remnants of Hurricane Bertha made landfall in the UK on Sunday and the show was essentially cancelled. There was a hardy crowd of 500-600 people who turned up early (before the cancellation), and they were treated to a tour through the hangars to look at the various aircraft amongst other things. Given the relatively small size of the crowd a number did come and find us to grab copies of our book and DVD — was nice to meet up with some fellow enthusiasts.

BAC TSR-2 at RAFM Cosford

BAC TSR-2 at RAF Museum Cosford

On the 11th we headed north into the Midlands and that enabled us to have a quick look around the R.A.F. Museum at Cosford, which is a great compliment to the museum in London. Don’t think that just because you’ve seen one, you seen them all — the aircraft collection at both museums is quite different (Cosford specialises in post war jet aircraft), and each is worth a visit in it’s own right.

Tomorrow it’s back down to the south coast, and hopefully some slightly warmer weather.  🙂

Watch this space….

Regards

Allan & Alex

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