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First arrivals touch down for Air Tattoo


First arrivals touch down for Air Tattoo

THE Royal International Air Tattoo at Fairford is gearing up to welcome the public on Friday, Saturday and Sunday . . . and military aircraft from around the world have begun to arrive.

Thousands of aviation fans have been enjoying the Gloucestershire sunshine watching the arrival of aircraft that have flown from as far afield as Algeria, Jordan and Oman as well as closer to home in mainland Europe.

The first aircraft to touch down at RAF Fairford was a C-27J Spartan airlifter arriving from the Baltic state of Lithuania. This sizeable unit is always popular with the enthusiasts and puts on one of the most eagerly-anticipated displays as it performs the sort of manoeuvres – loops and rolls – more commonly associated with a fighter jet.

Among the day’s other highlights was the spectacularly-painted F-16 of the Turkish Air Force’s SoloTurk demonstration team, resplendent in its black, gold and silver livery. The aircraft is making a welcome return to RAF Fairford as it is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year: the Turkish team is one of three F-16s which will be displaying at the airshow this weekend.

Another very popular arrival was that of a trio of Soviet-era Sukhoi Su-22 Fitters from the Polish Air Force. This will be the first time the Su-22s have performed a role demo display at a British event, and aviation enthusiasts will be eagerly anticipating the sight of appearance of this swing-wing strike aircraft in the flying display.

The Royal International Air Tattoo is staged annually in support of the Royal Air Force Charitable Trust which, in turn, awards grants in support of the RAF family, including serving personnel and Air Cadets. Since it was established in January 2005, the Trustees have awarded over £2.1 million to a wide range of projects and initiatives.


Explore Gloucestershire
9 July 2014


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