Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Shoreham Airshow and Caching Event

    Fellow geocachers, Dave Coombs and family, attended the Shoreham Airshow 2012  in West Sussex, United Kingdom last weekend.  Lucky for me, Dave sent me a little story and great photos of their weekend adventures.   Before I get into Dave's story, let me share with you a bit about the event, as the BBC reports.

     The airshow featured displays from a number of historic aircraft including the Fairey Swordfish II from the Royal Navy Historic Flight
     Up to 20,000 people have attended a West Sussex airshow to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the RAF's Central Flying School.
     The Shoreham Airshow, based at the town's airport - the oldest in the country - saw displays from the UK's only flying Vulcan bomber.
     The packed crowd cheered when the 52-year-old aircraft used in the Cold War, headlined the event on Saturday.
     A spokesman for the show said the first day had gone " exceptionally well".
     The Vulcan's appearance at the airshow in 2011 was cancelled when the craft developed a fuel leak in its tank.
     On Saturday there were also displays from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, a   Grob Tutor T1 - used by new RAF, Army and Royal Navy pilots - and a Fairey Swordfish II from the Royal Navy Historic Flight.
      The spokesman for the airshow, which continues on Sunday, said the only disappointment was that the weather had forced the cancellation of a parachute team display.
     The Shoreham Airshow, now in its 23rd year, raises money for The Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA), a charity that supports members and former members of the Royal Air Force.

And here is the map from of the caches in the area of the event location.  Yeah -  lots close by and convenient.

 And now, direct from the keyboard of Dave Coombs -

An interesting geocaching weekend with a built in Airshow (well a small multi)

Arrived Friday after sitting on the M25 from 16 to 7, we wizzed down the rest of the Route to Shoreham.

We arrived at the gate and were given the directions to where we were going to be based for the weekend by a lovely young lady, we made our way across the airfield and round the taxiways to our final destination.

After we finally came to a rest on the lovely green cut grass beside Big john we created our home for the weekend in between saying hello to our friends who had already arrived some time before us, John and Janet, Matt, Sarah and Lucy, Dave and Irene, Dave, Tracy and Short Stuff, John and Chris, Glen, Roy and Marylin, and Alan Outram.

Finally set up and looking forward to a great weekend, we had some food and chilled out with good friends for the evening Collin and Keith Boxall managed to arrive later than we did.  We went for a walk down to the beautiful Grade II* listed art deco style Terminal Building to have a listen to the live brass band that was playing. Music was provided by people murdering plenty of songs with a karaoke session in one of the tents for traders.  So to the low hum of a generator and a group of drunk wanna be singing stars, we eventually settled down for the night..

Saturday morning the site was busy with late arrivals in terms of traders, displays and stalls being set up, people started arriving for the Air Show around 08-30.
Looking at the Program we were in for some treats

The Air show schedule was divided up into 5 sections

10.00 - 10.30 Crowd line Parade

10.30 - 12.30 Emergency Vehicle Parade and Runway Check
The BLades
Tiger 9
Red Sparrows
RAF Tutor
RAF Kingair
RAF Tucano (Saturday only)
Jet Provost Mk 5
RAF Hawk

12.30 - 13.30 Olympia Vintage Gliders
REd Devils Parachute Team (Sunday only)

13.30 - 15.00 The Matadors
Breitling Wing Walkers
Sally 'B'
Hangar 11 Hurricane IIB and P51 Mustang
World War 1 Team
Trig Aerobatic Team
Battle of Britain Memorial Flight
RAF FAlcons Parachute Team (Saturday Only)

15.00 - 17.00 World war II airfield attack and scramble
RNHF Swordfish
Ryan PT 22
Glider FX
Bucker Bu 181 Bestmann
Spitfire MH 434 and P51D 'Ferocious Frankie'
Catalina PBY5A
Swip Team
Vulcan B2
XV Squadron Tornado Pair

The attractions were not just in the air, on the ground were Laurel and Hardy, The Real Dad's Army and The Road Menders!

There were also marching bands. There also a large collection of military vehicles and classic cars, all the fun of the fair as well as Simulator Rides, plus plenty of Traders

Saturday - We took a walk around the stalls and found there was a good selection of related stalls and some unrelated (like WTF are they doing here - oh well)  Cavity wall insulation, solar panels, Quite a few charity stalls, but then we see these at most events.  A good selection of related stalls, selling models, books and memorabilia as well as clothing etc, all in all a good mixture of stalls.

Saturday was mainly overcast with some quite low level clouds, the net result of this was no Parachute Display Team and a single pass of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (but i managed to get a few pics of the Lancaster and the accompanying pair of aircraft) we decided to go back to the tent to charge some batterys up, just as something rather interesting and something rather noisy was going on - Oh shit, the Germans are bombing the runway, an ME108 and ME109 straffing the runway, with Hurricanes and Spitfires in hot persuit, guns ablazing.  Oh well, we are fortunate enough to be able to see this again tomorrow so onwards and upwards, the highlight of the show is yet to come.  We made our way back over toward the runway to catch the Swip Team in their great little planes that look uncannily like a scaled down spitfire, then onto several passes by a pair of Tornados..

Many eyes at this point were now looking west, as the familiar shape of the Vulcan could be seen off in the distance, it was a case of oh seen them, what we want to see is over there (in the distance) the Tornados did their stuff and moved on, as the ever growing silhouette of the Vulcan grew closer, now she headed straight for the airfield. What a magnificent sight as she flew over the airfield, then went round for another pass and then opens the throttle up to bank hard right for another pass of the delighted crowd, me with the camera in sport mode just happily shooting away smile after several passes she flew off into the distance, the crowds clapping and whistling at what they had just seen.

We headed back to base for a cuppa and to find out what the evening had in store.

19.30 - after having a cup of tea we got kitted up and headed over to the VIP marque to gain access to the runway, oooh nice Ice bar, anyway we all got out onto the runway and put up the night kites, Several pints of Spitfire later around half 10 we were the last to pack up, i think the others must have been enjoying the beer (well turns out it was free), we packed up the last kite in the sky - (MINE AGAIN) and headed back to base, when we got back we realised there was something of a party  going on at the marque just across from us, so we head3ede over and got another drink from there and had that before we headed back to base to finish off the last pint we got from the VIP Marque

Sunday - A rather wet start to the day, so we spent more time in the tent than we would have liked, but we still braved the rain to go and forage for breakfast 1/2 pound burger Nom nom Nom .  The rain or should i say clouds that were on the ground really cocked up the display timings for today and again no parachute team could make a jump and the Lancaster failed to make an appearance, but we did get to see the WWII airfield attack and scramble, with dads army and a visit from Laurel and Hardy who didn't stop to long (maybe they knew the Germans were coming) the clouds lifted and it was finally drying up so We sat beside the runway from 13.00 till gone 17.00 getting plenty of pictures and Marie shooting video of the Vulcan and the airfield attack and scramble.  After the highlight of the show (well highlight for me - the (VULCAN)) we headed back to the tent to find that some of our group had already left, so we packed up and said our farewells and headed off home
Pictures on my Facebook @

I actually managed to shoot over 1700 Pictures this weekend which is a record for me so obviously couldn't put them all on facebook so there is a selection of them in there from the weekend
also Maries Facebook @

Although Maries Privacy settings may prevent viewing of this album.

All in all an AWESOME weekend..................

Except completely for got about the Geocaching

Air show
By: Dave Coombs

Once again I  want to thank Dave Coombs.  I hope we will see more stories from you in the future.  
If you happen to be friends with Dave on Facebook, you know that he loves the outdoors and seems to create a lot of fun where ever he goes.  I enjoy his stories and there is one part of this story that I like more than any other part.  Take a look at the last line.  
Oh Dave - you crack me up. 

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