Rain won’t put a dampener on Bournemouth Air Festival, promise organisers who say it will go ahead as planned
Rain won’t stop play as far as the Bournemouth Air Festival is concerned, promise organisers – but it might temper a few of the performances from the spectacular line-up of planes due to take part.
Speaking at the official opening of the 15th festival, Air Commodore Adam Sansom raised a few smiles when he announced: “I hope the weather gods have been appeased by this morning’s weather and we are looking forward to four days full of fun and entertainment.”
Crews due to take part in the festival revealed that if the bad weather continued, they would still take part but might have to put on less of a dynamic display then they might have if it had been sunny.
Katey Rowe, part of the iconic Typhoon crew, revealed how the aircraft has three levels of display it can carry out depending on the weather. She said: “It is not so much the rain as the clouds. If they are low and dense it affects what we can do.
“If it is bad, we do a flat display, a bit better and we can do a rolling one, and if everything is clear we can do a full display. We are hoping that the weather will improve enough so we can do a full display.
“But whatever happens I am sure people will enjoy it, especially the night displays which will be really spectacular. Bournemouth is the only air festival where we get to do one.
“It’s brilliant because you get to see the reheat – flames which some people call ‘carrots’ shooting out from the engine.
“At night it really is something to see and for a lot of Typhoon fans that is the moment they are waiting for.”
The Typhoon will also be doing a fly through with a Lancaster which Katey says is “tricky”, adding: “The Lancaster will be going at full speed whereas the Typhoon will be going about the slowest it can.”
Appearing for the first time this year are the Bucking Broncos display team from Belgium. Tony De Bruyn will be flying a North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco plane.
He describes the Bronco as a “diminutive little plane” which is “very agile and can put on a big show”.
Tony, who is aided by wife Edith Rickman acting as ground crew, revealed: “It is a very manoeuvrable little plane. It can go slow, fast, do full aerobatics, all sorts. I think people will be very surprised by what it can do.”
The plane has a “huge fishbowl glass cockpit, which Tony says “makes you feel like you are sitting on top of the world when you are flying.”
He added: “We are very excited to be here for the first time. I am hoping the weather will be good so we can show everything the Bronco can do.”
Appearing every day will be the world-famous Red Arrows and there will be displays by a Chinook helicopter, the Rolls Royce XIX Spitfire, P-51 Mustang, Fairey Swordfish biplane and Otto the Helicopter.
On the ground there is a mile and a half of food stalls along with exhibitions, a fun fair, and new for this year the family friendly Madame MoJos Cabaret show.
At the Royal Navy and Marines, Army, and Royal Air Force villages, kids and grown ups are able to see equipment and vehicles up close.