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3rd May 2008

Following on from the highly enjoyable group fly out to RAF Marham, our next destination was somewhat closer, but also extremely interesting. The 3rd May brought more good weather which was a bonus as it was the date of the ‘Pilot’ and ‘Go Flying!’ magazine open day fly in to which the North Weald Flying Group had been invited by our long term supporter Kirsten Corrigan, now deputy editor of ‘Go Flying!’, having recently moved from ‘Loop’.

The day was planned for the group to meet up with Kirsten, Dan Tye and Nick Bloom the editor of Pilot at Duxford after which there would be an opportunity to visit the Imperial War Museum collection.
The crews gathered at North Weald for a quick brief and then a leisurely off, as due to the anticipated numbers of aircraft arriving we had a collective group arrival slot of 11.15 local. With an anticipated 30 mins to Duxford including taxi it meant an engine start around 10.40. Paul Bazire, daughter Suzie and wife Lin were first off in FG to fly the North Weald Flying Group flag carrier into Duxford with Greg Dolph and Sean Creighton plus girlfriend in KK close behind. James Martin and Phil Fellows accompanied by young Toby who at 8 has the honour of being our youngest (by a long way) fly out participant were following in FC, the other ‘North Weald Flying Group liveried’ C172. Malcolm Jarvis with Darren Foss were in the C150 BH and Kieran Hardiman in JN was left behind for a while searching for his elderly father who had been directed into the market car park and at 80 was to date our most senior fly out participant.
A straightforward routing around Harlow and the Stansted zone and then north east towards the Barkway VOR soon had the historic airfield with its huge hangers coming into view. With aircraft calling in from all directions we slotted into a downwind join for runway 24. This brought us onto a rather breezy final and we elected for the grass runway to make a shorter vacate to the parking area, as well as allowing the following traffic to land given that the hard and grass runways are treated as one. So no landing on one whist someone is on the other despite being a fair way apart. This set up causing quite a few go arounds during the course of the afternoon. We threaded our way through the rows of the 30 or so parked aircraft of various shapes, sizes and ages including the beautiful B17 Flying Fortress ‘Sally B’ which is currently in the colours of the famous ‘Memphis Belle’. Having all parked up, we went off to be greeted by Kirsten and the others at the ‘Pilot’ tent. Regrouping after collecting our goody bags we headed off for the now traditional, eat first, visit after format of our fly outs. We then enjoyed a few leisurely hours exploring the numerous different aircraft displayed in the main hanger and the very impressive American Air Museum built to commemorate the 30,000 American airman who gave their lives flying from bases in the UK during WW2. There is a huge collection of fantastic aircraft here and if you haven’t visited before or even for a while it’s well worth a visit.
Fly in and take your time to take in these great iconic aircraft including the Lancaster, Lightning, Phantom and SR71 Blackbird up close and beautifully displayed. How they quite fitted them into the displays must be another story in itself. On departing, it was runway heading for two miles for noise abatement before turning back towards BKY and the short hop home. Another successful and very enjoyable day had by all the participants and the weather continuing to be kind for a change.

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Contact us

North Weald Flying Group operate out of the Squadron at North Weald Airfield.

The airfield is 10 miles south of Stansted and can be seen from the M11. Follow signs from the A414 and on entrance to the field, follow the perimeter track all the way around the field until you arrive at the distinctive Squadron building.

email: paul.bazire54@gmail.com
phone: 01992522090