Sunderland Airshow: Iconic aircraft to take flight

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Sunderland International Airshow will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

The Royal Air Force Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (RAF BBMF) will do three commemorative shows across the weekend, using iconic aircraft.

The RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight are once again delighted to be participating at the Sunderland Airshow in this special year.

Flight Lieutenant Antony “Parky” Parkinson MBE

The RAF BBMF has a variety of historic aircraft, including a Dakota and de Havilland Canada Chipmunks, the display team for the Sunderland International Airshow is expected to consist of the three legendary aircraft most Brits associate with the incredible victory against Hitler’s Luftwaffe over the fields of the Kent Weald and south-east England: the Supermarine Spitfire and Hawker Hurricane fighters, and the Avro Lancaster bomber.

The RAF BBMF join a wide range of aircraft and display teams, including the Typhoon FGR4 and The Royal Airforce Aerobatic Team The Red Arrows, to once again thrill and inspire the crowds.

BBMF operations officer and fighter pilot, Flight Lieutenant Antony “Parky” Parkinson MBE, said: “The RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight are once again delighted to be participating at the Sunderland Airshow in this special year – the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

“Securing the skies of the UK was vital during the summer of 1940, and remains the primary role of the RAF today.

“As well as the Lancaster, we will be bringing the two iconic fighters from the Battle of Britain, the Spitfire and Hurricane, and look forward to displaying these beautiful aircraft over the spectacular coastline at Sunderland.”

Airshow director Sue Stanhope added: “Last year we helped the Red Arrows celebrate their golden anniversary of display seasons and this year we have the fantastic opportunity to show our appreciation and respect to the aircraft and pilots from a previous era.

“The RAF BBMF are regular visitors to the Sunderland International Airshow and they remain a firm favourite with the crowds.

“The aircraft they fly never fail to impress and inspire those who see them, and I encourage everyone to come along and show their support for the team as they commemorate this historic milestone.”

Coun John Kelly, portfolio holder for Public Health, Wellness and Culture, said: “Each year the Sunderland International Airshow continues to grow and develop, and we are proud of its success as the biggest free event in the North East.

“Held along a stretch of our award-winning coastline, we have a great location, huge crowds, friendly atmosphere and the display teams always receive a fantastic warm welcome.

“It is great to know that the crews continue to look forward to coming here and once again we will have a packed flying display, as well as something for everyone on the ground.”

All airshow displays are subject to weather and operational restrictions, and display timings for RAF BBMF and all airshow attractions will be confirmed nearer to the weekend.