Maroon Raman, who was working alongside Richard Clarke at the event, reports from one of the last Airshows of the season at Duxford.
The Battle of Britain Airshow, held at the Imperial War Museum, Duxford in Cambridgeshire, attracted crowds of over 33,000 across the weekend. The event commemorates one of the most famous battles of The Second World War, which had far reaching implications and consequences for the successful outcome of this conflict. It is not just a gathering of aircraft enthusiasts, it is a celebration of aviation history, a showcase of magnificent aerial displays and a gateway to a world of career possibilities in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
The show encased numerous aviation marvels, from the iconic Red Arrows’ thrilling aerobatic manoeuvres to the meticulously coordinated formations like the Lancaster and the B17. These performances are not mere spectacles; they are a testament to the dedication and precision required in the field of aerospace engineering. However, the highlight of the flying display was undoubtedly the mass display by a large gathering of Spitfires which touched the hearts of many people amongst the captivated spectators.
One of the unique aspects of the Duxford Air Show is the opportunity it offers visitors to view and, in some cases, board and explore historic aircraft such as Concorde and Vulcan XJ824, which are located in the same Hall, which is very appropriate considering the similarities of these two iconic aircraft. Stepping inside and viewing these time machines, you can gain a first-hand understanding of the engineering sensations that have shaped aviation history. The Imperial War Museum, in conjunction with the air show, provides a captivating educational experience that fosters a deep appreciation for the world of aviation. The airliner collection is a great credit to the organisation that is responsible for their upkeep – the Duxford Air Society – who play an important role in maintaining the history and heritage of these magnificent machines.
Conversations with experts and professionals at the Show reveal the vast array of career pathways that are on offer within the aviation and aerospace industry. From Aircraft restoration specialists to engineers, from ground staff to display directors, the opportunities are as diverse as they are exciting. For those aspiring to pursue STEM careers, volunteering at air shows like Duxford is an invaluable experience. These events offer a unique chance to work alongside experts, gain hands-on training, and develop a network of mentors in the field. Many volunteers find themselves on a fast track to fulfilling careers in aviation.
The Duxford Air Show is not just an event, it’s an inspiration to the next generation, igniting the spark of curiosity of young attendees. It showcases the awe-inspiring beauty of aviation and the dedication of those who make it possible. Whether you’re an aircraft enthusiast or someone considering a career in STEM, this event is a must-visit.
Many thanks to Sarah and all of the Media team for their help and support at the Airshow which was greatly appreciated.
Footnote from Richard Clarke
When I visit Duxford it always brings to mind the superb displays that were carried out at this historic location by XH558 during her flying years, when she was always the star of the show. In addition, it was the venue for another highly memorable experience for me when I was fortunate enough to have the chance to fly in a Sky Van aircraft to carry out an air-to-air photo shoot with XH558 over Cambridge Airport. This happened on the very last day of the aircraft’s display career and directly after her final display at Old Warden, so as well as being an incredible experience which I will never forget it was also a highly emotional day for all of us who had been lucky enough to have been part of that unique passage of time.