Culdrose Air Day brings out the Cornish crowds
Under a changing Cornish sky, Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose put on a Spectacular Air Day for 2013, where over 14,500 visitors were captivated by displays of the Naval and Military hardware.
Having taken a year out from the Air Day circuit because of resurfacing runways and supporting Security duties during the London Olympics of 2012, organisers worked hard to come back with a thrilling show. The public were not disappointed! Keen aircraft enthusiasts queued from the early hours to get prized picnic locations near the runway, meters away from where displaying aircraft would delight both young and old.
One of the top attractions for 2013 was to be the Red Arrows, but low cloud prevented their normal crowd pleasing display. So the baton was picked up by a very entertaining Dutch Air Force Apache, who proved why it has a big following at Air Shows acrossEurope. The Flare-firing attack helicopter truly was awesome to see and at such close range. Twisting and rolling across the Cornish sky it left many in awe of such a powerful beast!
The Fleet Air Arm War-birds from yesteryear and today’s modern equivalents were also on good form. The Majestic Sea Vixen stealing the show moments after “the Reds” departed for their base, bringing a rousing cheers and applause from spectators. The 50 year old veteran carrier strike aircraft was this year’s show stopper, carving stately loops across the heavens.
Thrill-seekers were not only entertained skywards. A large selection of helicopters and jets both old and new were on display for visitors who wanted to get up close and personal. Also on the ground in a specially designed Arena the Plymouth Band of HM Royal Marines performed to the obvious delight of the public, in addition an exciting Field Gun competition. A HMS Seahawk crew locking horns once again with their Fleet Air Arm rivals from Yeovilton HMS Heron, and putting on a strong show and some true grit for the day.
“A lot of planning goes into putting on a fantastic day like this”, said Commander Peter Munro-Lott, Commander Air and Flying display director. “It’s a whole station effort and our chance to let the public in and see what we do at Culdrose.”
The Air day theme for 2013 was, “Culdrose on the front line”, with displays from Fleet Air Arm aircraft and personnel showcasing the Royal Navy’s Cornish Air Station with a range of family-themed attractions on the ground complemented by the airborne excitement. Visitors of all ages enjoyed a thrilling and memorable day out.
Captain Mark Garratt, RNAS Culdrose Commanding Officer said, “It’s been an absolutely fantastic day. Culdrose has been on display to the public, sailors are always happy to showcase their capability. I’m proud of everyone and the public have gone home happy”.