Duxford to mark a half century of airshows

This month’s season-closing air display at IWM Duxford, the Flying Finale, will also salute 50 years of shows at the famous airfield

IWM Duxford is bringing its 50th anniversary flying season to a close with an event taking place 50 years to the day since the first Air Day was held at Duxford in 1973.

The one-day event on Saturday, October 14, will celebrate Duxford’s rich flying heritage, with a line-up featuring an array of warbirds, aerobatic displays and special appearances by aircraft that participated in that very first show 50 years ago.

Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IX TD314 is operated by Aero Legends
Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IX TD314 is operated by Aero Legends IWM

Confirmed acts include the Rolls-Royce Heritage Flight, Consolidated Catalina, the Duxford-based Comrade Pair flying a Yakovlev Yak-18T and Yakovlev Yak-52, Republic P-47 Thunderbolt, and ahead of the 80th anniversary of D-Day next year, the iconic Douglas C-47.

Visitors will also witness aerobatics from The Titans, dazzling gyroscopic manoeuvres from Diana Britten Aerobatics - the first female British Aerobatic Champion – and displays from the Shuttleworth Collection’s Miles Magister and Avro Tutor, which both flew in the first Duxford Air Day in 1973. A flying event at Duxford would not be complete without an array of Spitfires and Hurricanes taking to the skies over the historic airfield - both early and late models will commemorate Duxford’s prominent role as a World War Two fighter base.

Avro Tutor ‘K3241’ (originally K3215) will be visiting from Old Warden
Avro Tutor ‘K3241’ (originally K3215) will be visiting from Old Warden Shuttleworth Collection

The Flying Finale marks the end of this year’s airshow season, which has been one of the most successful for IWM Duxford in recent years, with over 90,000 visitors attending the various displays and flying days across the summer. Air Show Event Manager, Phil Hood, said: “Duxford is an incredibly special place for our visitors, and we know that our airshows have created unforgettable memories for so many people over the years. We’ve had a fantastic 50th anniversary flying season and are delighted that so many people have joined us to mark this historic occasion. We are already looking forwards to next year’s events and beyond to ensure Duxford’s flying legacy continues for many generations to come.”

More information here.

Fighter Aviation Engineering Ltd’s Hurricane Mk I P2902
Fighter Aviation Engineering Ltd’s Hurricane Mk I P2902 IWM