IWM Duxford Flying Week

United Fuel Cells

By George Land

On Sunday, June 20th the third IWM Duxford Flying Day took place at the Imperial War Museum’s  historic Duxford aerodrome. And on Wednesday and Thursday of this week more flights took place, a busy week indeed for Duxford. Our intrepid correspondent, George Land, was on hand to report on the proceedings.

On Sunday June 20th, The weather tried its hardest to wreck what promised to be a great weekend of warbirds, with the Shuttleworth Collection’s Evening air show on Saturday and the IWM Duxford Flying Day on Sunday, but even the grey damp and, at times, dark skies could not stop the Warbirds of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and some of the Duxford-based Spitfires and Hurricanes from putting on a great show over the two days.

The event even saw an appearance by the Royal Air Force  Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s (BBMF) freshly-repainted Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc. Every few years, each of the aircraft within the BBMF receives a new paint scheme as a way of highlighting the enormous breadth of history and valiant actions which these aircraft represent. Typically, they time these repaints to coincide with major aircraft overhauls, and such was the case for the Flight’s Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc PZ865, which returned to its home at RAF Coningsby on May 11th following rework at Biggin Hill, now marked as a No.247 Squadron night fighter, coded ‘ZY-V.

Flying Days are a new addition to the Imperial War Museum’s Duxford events calendar for 2021. Each event is themed around available vintage aircraft, both those based at Duxford and beyond, to help retell a specific story from aviation history. As the museum notes, “Each event will bring you the best aerial choreography, storytelling and conservation success stories from IWM Duxford through thrilling flying displays (subject to weather, serviceability and pilot availability) and themed ground activities.”

On Wednesday and Thursday of this week a three ship Spitfire formation, a very rare sight outside of an airshow, took place. “To get two different three ship Spitfire formations on consecutive days was pretty special, thanks to ARCO this happened this week at IWM Duxford!”

The formation included a Supermarine Spitfire H.F.Mk.Vlllc, MV154 in the colours of MT928, ZX-M, Sdr.Ldr. G.R.S.McKay 154 squadron RAF – MTO Italy, (Wednesday and Thursday), Supermarine Spitfire Tr.9 (L.F.lX) G-CCCA, PV202, 5R-H, No33 Squadron RAF, 2nd Tactical Air Force, (Wednesday), Supermarine Spitfire Tr.9, (H.F.lXe) G-CTIX, PT462, Finished as SW-A of 253 Squadron, Mediterranean Air Command, MTO, RAF,1945, from Italy and Yugolsavia on bomber escort and anti-shipping operations, (Wednesday), Supermarine-Vickers Armstrong Spitfire L.F. lXb, MH434, ZD-B, Mylcraine No 222 Sdn RAF, (Thursday) and Supermarine-Vickers Armstrong Spitfire P.R.lX, PL983, G-PRXI, No4 Squadron 2nd Tactical Air Force, RAF, (Thursday)

For more information about the IWM Duxford Flying Days, visit www.iwm.org.uk


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