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  • Ludo Mennes

2022 Duxford, Battle of Britain Air Show

Updated: Jan 8


Silver Spitfire Mk. IX taxiing back after the show, the rain reflects the silhouette on the ground

The Imperial War Museum (IWM) Duxford airfield, once home of the first operational RAF Supermarine Spitfire squadron during World War II, yearly hosts the Battle of Britain Airshow in September. A large gathering of classic aircraft and great opportunity to see many warbirds flying!


The relaxed atmosphere and the many re-enactors, combined with a large row of carefully restored aircraft, create a day well spent!

In the morning the public was allowed to walk along the flightline and make some detailed shots of the aircraft and re-enactors present.

Around noon the flightline was closed off and crews started preparing for the afternoon show!

This years' venue had a special tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, who passed away on the Thursday before the showdays. The show was opened with two minutes of silence, followed by a low pass of Spitfire Mk.XIV and a barrel roll towards the sky. An impressive and appropriate gesture by the organisation!

Spitfire Mk. XIV, RN201, flown by the excellent display pilot John Romains taking the sky for the salute

The afternoon show saw many different warbirds and formations over the field ranging from the Westland Lysander and Bristol Blenheim to the Grumman Bearcat and Grumman Wildcat. Off course the former enemies were also present with the Hispano Buchon.


One of the participants was B-17G Flying Fortress "Sally B", always a pleasure and impressive to see!


Highlight of the day was the Grande Finale, when 16 Spitfires and 4 Hurricanes took the sky for a mass formation flight. The weather had been typical British, cloudy with rain showers, until the late afternoon. However, during take off the sky broke and the sun came out, creating a magical moment.

Wheels up, the front one is the Spitfire Mk. I "Duxford"
Spitfire Mk. IX TD314 "St. George" of Aero Legends

The formation made a total of three passes, however after the first pass the formation had to wait for a while due to rain showers in the vicinity of the airfield. After the last pass the aircraft broke away from the formation and landed one by one, taxxing by the crowds to receive thier well deserved round of applause.

Where do you see 16 Spitfires and 4 Hurricanes in formation?! What a magnificent sight and sound!

Sea Hurricane of the Shuttleworth Collection in the best light conditions

The airshow ended around 5 pm and the crowds went home with a large smile on their faces after enjoying four hours of flight activities. One item less on our bucketlist!

Happy faces after a wonderful show day!

Northern Skies Aviation would like to thank IWM Duxford for their hospitality.



For an impression of the Grand Finale and solo display, please use this link from PlanesTV;

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