Southend Airport Airshows
The first airshow at the airport was held on the official opening day on Wednesday 18th September 1935. A number of aircraft making flying demonstrations throughout the day included De Havilland DH85 Leopard Moth & the new Shorts S16 Scion, however, with war looming the short life of Southend's civilian airport would soon revert to a war footing. Airshows did not return to Southend Airport until the 1947, this airshow saw an air race arranged along with displays by the RAF including a Vampire formation team. On Saturday 20th June 1953 the National Air Races came to Southend, with thousands attending this was at the time the biggest airshow the town had ever held. The Kings Cup was won by L. A "Clem" Pike in his D. H. Chipmunk G-AKDN and the Norton Griffiths trophy was awarded to W. P. Bowles who flew Miles Messenger 2a G-AJYZ. However, the event was not without incident, a Supermarine Spitfire G-AISU/AB910 was damaged in a heavy landing. Worse was to follow with the day ending on a tragic note when a Percival Proctor G-AKWV was involved in an mid-air collision with Proctor G-AIKJ whilst taking part in the Kings Cup Air Race, the tail plane and fin broke off and the aircraft plummeted to the ground and caught fire, the pilot was killed on impact the second aircraft sustained damage to its propeller and leading edge, this has been the only death at any airshow held at Southend. The next airshow held in Southend was on Sunday 8th March 1966 to celebrate the Centenary of the Royal Aeronautical Society (formed 12th January 1866). To mark the occasion the Southend branch of the R.A.e.S planed an exhibition, it was to be the biggest exhibition and air-display ever seen in the area, sadly, the weather prevented much of the flying display from taking place. Total of 10,000 people came to the event, the hangers of the ATEL were used for the exhibition, once the weather cleared joy-flights over the town and seafront were arranged, during the day an R.A.F Vulcan made a touch and go and an R.A.F Phantom made a low level fly past. The airport held an open-day on Sunday 24th March 1968, the event was to commemorate two anniversary's, one being the golden jubilee of the R.A.F and the other being the 21st anniversary of the post war airport. The event was a tremendous success it was opened at 2:00pm by a Wittering based 100sqn R.A.F Victor bomber making a touch and go. Other aircraft included the Spitfires and Hurricanes of the BBMF, Air Sea Rescue demonstration, Lightning, Shackleton, Dominie (HS125), R.A.F Falcons. The unique Reid & Sigrist Desford G-AGOS and a number of other historic aircraft flew into the airport and gave displays throughout the day the event drew a crowed of over 50,000. The organisers of the proposed museum also put on display their aircraft. Sunday 26th April 1970 Southend Airshow took place. On Friday 26th May 1972, The Historic Aircraft Museum opened. To mark the event a grand air display from Southend Airport was held. 1935 Opening Day Airshow 10:00am Gates open; Admission Up till 1:30pm Adults 6d, Children 3d, Cars 1s Admission After 1:30pm Adults 1s, Children 6d Mayors enclosure: Adults 10/6, Children 5s 11:00 Formation Flying by Southend Flying Club Avro Cadets 11:15 Arrival of Mr C. W. A. Scott 11:30 Autogiro 11:45 Lecture by Mr C. W. A. Scott 12:00 Crazy flying by Capt Glover Southend Flying Club 12:15 Pleasure flights over Southend 12:45 Arrival by His Worship The Mayor of Southend & Rt Hon Sir Philip Sassoon. The Under Secretary of State for Air 12:55 Presentation of Bouquets to the Mayoress & Mrs Webber 1:00 Luncheon Interval 2:30 Official Opening by Sir Philip Sassoon 2:45 Autogiro 3:15 Display by Air Publicity, aircraft will tow banners between 150 - 250 feet in length by 4 to 7 feet high these can cover up to 600 to 1750 square feet of sky space 3:30 Display of the latest type of high speed fighter by S. A. Thorne of A. V.Role 3:45 Special Surprise item 4:00 Converging Bombing 4:15 Parachutes 4:30 Demonstration of the latest open and closed civil aircraft, including Short Scion & De Havilland DH86 Express The Astoria Grand Orchestra 4:45 Mannequin Parade 8:00 Illuminations Pleasure Flights Aircraft displaying included: Avro Lynx 4x Hawker Heart Mew Gull Kings Cup Falcon
Southend Airshow 1947 The 1947 Southend Airshow saw an air race arranged along with displays by the RAF including a Vampire formation team. Saturday 20th June 1953 National Air Races Event One: Grosvenor Challenge Cup Air Race Event Two: Landings Event Three: The Norton-Griffiths Challenge Trophy Air Race Event Four: Landings Event Five: The Kemsley Challenge Trophy Air Race Event Six: Landings Event Seven: Solo display of aerobatics by a Gloster Meteor T7 of the Central Flying School of the RAF Little Rissington Event Eight: Four RAF English Electric Canberra B2's of 101Sqn Event Nine: Solo display of aerobatics by a North American Sabre if the Royal Canadian Air Force Fighter Wing North Luffenham Event Ten: Four RCAF North American Sabres perform team aerobatics from North Luffenham Event Eleven: Winching demonstration by a Royal Navy Westlands-Sikorsky Dragonfly HR3 of 705Sqn Event Twelve: The Kings Cup Air Race Event Thirteen: Landings Event Fourteen: Pattouille DEtampes Display of aerobatics by the French Acrobatic Squadron, Nord SV4C Stample's Event Fifteen: Joy Flights & departure of visiting aircraft
Sunday 8th May 1966, Royal Aeronautical Society Centenary Display Static: Pou du Ciel G-AEOF Slingsby Swallow No.369 (c/n.1475) Avro Anson G-ALIH Blanik L-13 G-ASVS Piper Cherokees G-ASIL and N9014J Pawnee G-ASIY Nipper G-ATBW Tipsy Trainer G-AFWT Vickers Viscount G-APZC Trener Master G-ASIM Bristol Britannias G-AOVP, G-APNB, G-ATGD Vickers Viking G-AHOP (Marconi) The Tiger Club Contingent: Beagle D5/180 Husky G-ATMH Cosmic Wind G-ARUL De Havilland Tiger Moth G-ACDC Snacan Stampe SV-4C G-ASHS Druine Condor G-ARVZ Druine D.31 Turbulent G-APNZ Druine D.31 Turbulent G-ASDB Visiting Aircraft: Auster D6/180 G-ARDJ Beagle A61 Terrier G-ARSL Piper PA23-250 Aztec G-ASFG De Havilland Hornet Moth G-ADUR, (landed short of fuel at Hall Farm, continuing to the airport later) Joy Rides: Piper Cherokee G-ATLW Piper Cherokee and G-ATRX Flying: Cosmic Wind Stampe Red Pelicans, arrived to land (Jet Provosts XP549, XP552, XP554, XP571 and XP573 which joined the static park) Whirlwind 10 XP354 Red Pelicans Display Carvair G-ASKN Zlin Nipper Zlin & Stampe Bolkow Junior G-ATDO
Sunday 24th March 1968, 21st Anniversary Open Day Static Park. Belroit— RAF Museum Gloster Gladiator— Shuttleworth Collection Hawker Hurricane— RAF Supermarine Spitfire— RAF Hawker Siddeley Dominie— RAF Stradishall Lockheed Hercules— RAF Support Command Westland Whirlwind— RAF Manston (22sqn) Avro Shackleton— RAF Coastal Command Avro Lincoln Southend Historic Aircraft Museum Hawker Sea Fury— Southend Historic Aircraft Museum Hawker Sea Hawk— Southend Historic Aircraft Museum Saab J-29f— Southend Historic Aircraft Museum De Havilland Vampire— 1312Atc Sqn De Havilland Hornet Moth—Historic Aircraft Group De Havilland Cygnet—Historic Aircraft group De Havilland Cirrus Mot —Hawker Siddeley Avro Anson—E K Cole Tippsy Nipper— Altair Bristol Freighter— British Air Ferries Aviation Traders ATL98 Carvai —British Air Ferries De Havilland Fox Moth— Tiger Club De Havilland Puss Moth—Tiger Club Hawker Siddeley Trident— Channel Airways Pipper Apache —Automobile Association Shorts Skyvan— Shorts (Belfast) Elizabethan— BKS Piper Cherokee— Southend Light Aviation Centre Aircoupe— Southend Light Aviation Centre Gliders—Marmol Aviation The ATEL & other hangers will be open. Flying Display Handley Page Victor Air to Air re-fuelling demo with English Electric Lighting Handley Page Victor Touch and Go English Electric Lightning —Display SAR Westland's Whirlwind— SAR Demo Hawker Siddeley Dominie— Display Lockheed Hercules— Display Avro Shackleton —Display Armstrong Whitworth Argosy— Take off RAF Falcons Supermarine Spitfire— Display Hawker Hurricane —Display RAF Flacons Freefall Armstrong Whitworth Argosy Flypast and land to close RAF Section Glostor Gladiator— Display De Havilland Tiger Moth x2 Stampe x2 Gliders Shorts Skyvan Tipsy Nipper Percival Prentice Aircoupe & Cherokee's Formation De Havilland Foxmoth De Havilland Pussmoth De Havilland Hornet Moth Cygnet Scheduled Services will arrive and depart during the show
Sunday 26th April 1970 Southend Airshow RAF English Electric Lightning acrobatic display Lockheed Hercules Shorts SC5 Belfast De Havilland Comet Bristol Britannia Armstrong Whitworth Argosy Hawker Siddeley Andover Vickers VC10 RAF Falcons RAF Red Arrows Gliding Display Banner Snatch by a Percival Prentice The Tiger Club Neville Browning's Flying Circus The Vintage Aircraft Flying Club John Fairey's aerobatic Spitfire G-AIDN
Friday 26th May 1972, Historic Aircraft Museum Opening Display from Southend Airport R.A.F Spitfire R.A.F Hurricane Rothmans Stample Aerobatic Team Aerobatic gliding by champion "Ladi" Marmol Major Tom Rigeways "Silver Stars" Sky diving team Low-level crop spaying demonstration 1929 "Tom tit" bi-plane from the Shuttleworth Collection Cirrus Moth from the Shuttleworth Collection Hot Air Balloon Ascent Formation of Turbulent's tied together Jungman & Tigermoth R.A.F Skeeter Helicopter Bill Coles Flying Flea The Museum Aircraft A young lady wingwalk on bi-plane De Havilland Pussmoth G-AEOA founding aircraft of East Anglian Flying Services

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