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Reisverslag Duxford Air Show day 1 and 2 (13/14 September)
15 september 2014
Duxford Air Show day 1 and 2 (13/14 September)
I had been to London a couple of times already and it's a nice place to visit. It was great to see Paddington station for the first time and great to see King's Cross again. At King's Cross I took the train to Cambridge where I was going to stay for three nights while visiting the Air Show at Duxford, which is just a few miles south of Cambridge.
I booked a room at the YHA Cambridge hostel just a couple of days before and when I arrived at Cambridge station I headed to the hostel to check in. However, when I got there it became apparent that I booked a room for next weekend and not for this weekend. Luckily they still had a bed available for Saturday and Sunday, but not for Friday night. I had to find other accommodation and since Cambridge didn't have any other hostels I was forced to book a very expensive room in one of the B&B's across the street. And it was very expensive. £50.- for a room is a ridiculous amount of money for just one night, and I couldn't even get breakfast in the morning because I left too early for Duxford. The staff wouldn't even be in when I was going to catch my 6:51 train to Whittlesford. I booked the room nonetheless and got up the next morning at half 6 to catch a very early train to Whittlesford, the closest station to Duxford.
After arriving at Whittlesford I walked the 2.2 miles to the Imperial War Museum. I didn't have my ticket yet, something which worried me about Sunday's show, but there were still plenty of tickets for Saturday so I got in without any trouble. The first thing I figured doing was to get some breakfast. Since I hadn't a chance to do it that morning I bought some sandwiches at the restaurant at the museum. Shortly after that it was time to explore and find out what kind of aircraft they had on display. The weather was a bit disappointing that morning. It didn't rain or anything, but there was awfully foggy outside and I wasn't sure if that would clear coming the afternoon. Luckily it wasn't as thick as to completely obscure the view to the airplanes stationed outside.
The first plane I came across was the B17 Flying Fortress Sally B. I mistakenly took that one to be the Memphis Belle at first, but the plane had actually been used for the movie Memphis Belle and still had her decal attached on the side of the aircraft. Nonetheless it was a beautiful aircraft to look at. An incredible majestic machine.
Stationed next to the B17 was a PBY Catelina flying boat, also a great aircraft. The flight walk behind those aircraft consisted of several American and British figher planes along with some other aircraft. It was an incredible sight and I took a lot of picture. I even had my picture taken with the B17, and I arrived early enough to be able to appear as the only person in that picture. There was no one yet around to block the view or wander around in the background.
On Saturday I explored a large part of the museum's exhibitions. Among those were the Land Warfare hall, the American Air Museum and the conservation hall. And that was all before 2 pm, because at that time the Air Show began and I spend the rest of the afternoon looking at all the aircraft taking off and flying around the airfield.
It was incredible looking at all those old machines flying around, most of which are over 70 years old. And they're still being looked after, still being preserved and maintained and they still amaze everyone as they must have done after they were first being made.
Several aircraft that I've seen flying around are a F4U Corsair, F8F Bearcat, F6F Hellcat, P-40F Kittyhawk, PBY Catelina, B17 Flying Fortress, Avro Vulcan, various Spitfire models, Hawker Hurricane, several World War I bi-, tri- and monoplanes and some jet aircraft as well.
It was amazing to be able to go to the Duxford Air Show and I've looked forward to it for a very long time. Sunday was a great day as well. Weather like and aircraft like. They had the same show with the World War II fighter and bomber aircraft, but Sunday was also the day of the historic flight of the Avro Lancaster. Both bombers came in late in the afternoon while escorted by two Spitfires. I expected them to take of from Duxford but they were already in the air.
Sunday was closed by the RAF Aerobatics team the Red Arrows, who also came flying in on the air show. The tricks those guys pulled of were incredible and the crowd loved it. The air show at Duxford was a great experience and I would recommend it to anyone, whether you're interested in aircraft or not, it's just such an amazing thing to see.
Hope you enjoyed this little story about the airshow and I hope you enjoyed and will enjoy the pictures on facebook as I've yet to upload everything. I will though in the upcoming days.
17 september 2014 17:05 | Door: Jos
Nicely written reports, Martijn.
So far it all sounds very much like a holiday though. Do tell me about the everyday rut, about the cultural knowledge you have gained, about your language development, ...