16 September 2015

Battle of Britain - 75th Aniversary

The moment I heard about the free tickets on offer to see "50 Spitfires" taking to the air from Goodwood Aerodrome I quickly secured myself a ticket.

Fearing traffic as miserable as the weather early on the 15th September, I arrived early to the area and was parked up at Goodwood by 9am.  Three hours to wait...  time for a snooze in the van.

I was inside by 11am, and looking for a decent location to photograph from.  End of the runway which they were supposed to be using seemed like the best place.  Then came the two hour delay.  The Battle of Britain had been postponed because of bad weather.


Fast forward 2 hours, and some rather aching feet (I'd walked around the other side of the circuit / airfield mostly because I was bored and cold).

The sun was shining, so I'd sited myself shooting with the sun, just to the left of the runway. 

At nearly exactly 2pm, the first batch of Spitfires (Hurricanes and other planes as well) took to the air.  A little frustratingly all of the planes banked to the right shortly after take off, otherwise my positioning would have been perfect.  To make up for it, they did do a fly past in formation a few minutes after getting into the air.

Information coming from the Goodwood tannoy was minimalist at best, bloody awful at worst.  I probably shouldn't mention the normal price fixing from the food stalls, or the muddy conditions.

All in all, 33 assorted planes took the skies.  Not the 50 as were originally advertised, or the lazy BBC reporting of "around 40" might have led people to believe.  It was still a wonderful sight, and sound, and a grumble or two aside, I'm very glad to have made the effort to be there.

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