Record crowds attended the the Imperial War Museums’ 2013 Spring Air Show at RAF Duxford in the UK last week. Commemorating the 70th anniversary of the arrival of American forces during the Second World War.
In keeping with the commemoration, event planners laced the festivities with Americana, featuring cheerleading displays at the base’s hangars, 1940s pop songs from all-girl trio reminiscent of the Andrews Sisters and a spectacular battle re-enactment that portrayed the landing on Omaha Beach on D-day featuring re-enactors wearing the uniforms and using vintage equipment to depict the the US Army’s 2nd Ranger Battalion.
Second World War United States 357th Fighter Group veteran and “Triple Ace” fighter pilot Bud Anderson was the Eagle Squadron’s guest of honour. He flew into the air show in P-51 Mustang “Miss Velma” and upon on landing, greeted the crowds with a drive by in a 1940s American jeep.
The flying display began with the first ever public aerial display by the Imperial War Museum’s Eagle Squadron – a Hawker Hurricane X, Supermarine Spitfire Mark I, Republic P-47G Thunderbolt and North American P-51C Mustang “Princess Elizabeth” all taking part. Other classic U.S. aircraft included the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress “Sally B“, Curtis P-40B and P-40F Warhawks, a Boeing PT-17 Stearman, a pair of North American Harvards and a North American F-86 Sabre and the show concluded with an flyover by RAF’s Red Arrows precision flying squadron accompanied by the Eagle Squadron.
Highlights of the show: