Aldergrove Air Fair 22nd August 1987 Concorde Flypast

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In August 1987 I was on holiday in the South of France when I was asked if I could jump on a plane and escort some journalists on a trip to Northern Ireland. When I arrived at Heathrow to catch the Belfast shuttle we were all gobsmacked to learn that instead of a 757 we would be travelling on Concorde. Ulsterman David Burnside who was then BA's Director of Public Affairs and Lord King's right hand man had made the arrangements. After a while the captain asked if we wanted to go Supersonic. Everybody but me said yes and suddenly we were heading down the Bristol Channel at 700 and something mph. Arriving over Belfast we were stacked for quite a while apparently because the Red Arrows were doing their stuff over Aldergrove. Eventually I thought we had lined up for landing but instead we ended up doing a flypast for the crowds. I seem to recall we came down a little heavily but I'm not sure now after all these years. Apparently, I was told afterwards, we ended up being in a bit of a hurry as we had run below the permitted fuel level for our alternate. All that took place on Saturday the 22nd August 1987. I can't seem to find any mention of this particular Air Show or the Concorde visit (which I think was quite a rarity) on the net. I wonder if anybody can tell me where I might find a photo of Concorde in action over, or on the tarmac of, Aldergrove from that time. Thanks Ian
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I have been researching information on the Aldergrove air fair for a long time - I attended it that year aged 18 before I left N.I for good. I have wonderful memories about it (I didn't fly on concorde but the aircraft displays were the best in my memory) and have been researching ways to find any photographs of the event. I was quite an airplane fan when I was younger but could not afford a camera, so I have no record of that day and the wonderful aircraft that came (I seem to remember a vintage meteor/vampire pair, a seahawk, plenty of DC3s and lots more) I have searched all the usual sites like airliners.net and their ilk, no joy. I did recently come across a Radio Ulster broadcast that gave me further hope that there are other people out there who remember it. The link is here and will need realplayer to listen to the story. My next try will be the local newspapers but this is made more difficult since I now live in France. I will let you know if I find anything relevant to your own request. Cheers

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OK Trickshot. Many thanks Ian

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Ulster Air Show So, after much digging I have got hold of the newspapers (specifically the Belfast Telegraph and the Newsletter) from the day of the show. No photos of Concorde, only a photo of a chap landing his Piper Cub on a truck - I remember that - and a long article telling us that the airshow meant lots of delays for holiday makers, as well as the Spanish Air Traffic Controller strike that was due on the same day. A short list of visiting aircraft mentions the Red Arrows and various other RAF types. Once I get a chance I will scan the front page of the Belfast Telegraph and post it here.
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I wonder if anybody can tell me where I might find a photo of Concorde in action over, or on the tarmac of, Aldergrove from that time.
Hi Ian, I was at the Aldergrove show as a rather keen 11 year old and have a photo of the Concorde flypast *somewhere* in the roofspace. Give me a couple of days and I'll dig it out and scan it, though I can't guarantee that it's even in focus! IIRC it was G-BOAG. Also at the show that I recall were a Merchantman ( ``Ajax'' ), a TNT 146QT, a pair of A-10s and Aer Lingus' Dragon. More soon.
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I have several boxes of negatives through which to search for The Pointed One, but in the meantime here is a battered print of two of the participants; Iolar and G-TNTA. The 146 had been parked-up in the static with its lower-hold doors open for display. Nearby was the Merchantman with its port forward freight door open and a curious antique lorry raised to deck-level on a scissor lift. No doubt it made sense to someone.
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Newspapers of the day So here it is. Poor quality photocopy but a memento of the day nonetheless. I remember we didn't pay to get in, instead parked at the side of the road in the sunshine, seemingly like a gazillion other people.
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Sorry guys. I've been away and only just found your helpful messages. First of all many thanks Trickshot for posting the Belfast Telegraph article. Cherry Ripe - I see you posted your messages in July and I wonder if you have had any luck in locating the Concorde pic? Many thanks All the best Ian

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Concorde video
In August 1987 I was on holiday in the South of France when I was asked if I could jump on a plane and escort some journalists on a trip to Northern Ireland. When I arrived at Heathrow to catch the Belfast shuttle we were all gobsmacked to learn that instead of a 757 we would be travelling on Concorde. Ulsterman David Burnside who was then BA's Director of Public Affairs and Lord King's right hand man had made the arrangements. After a while the captain asked if we wanted to go Supersonic. Everybody but me said yes and suddenly we were heading down the Bristol Channel at 700 and something mph. Arriving over Belfast we were stacked for quite a while apparently because the Red Arrows were doing their stuff over Aldergrove. Eventually I thought we had lined up for landing but instead we ended up doing a flypast for the crowds. I seem to recall we came down a little heavily but I'm not sure now after all these years. Apparently, I was told afterwards, we ended up being in a bit of a hurry as we had run below the permitted fuel level for our alternate. All that took place on Saturday the 22nd August 1987. I can't seem to find any mention of this particular Air Show or the Concorde visit (which I think was quite a rarity) on the net. I wonder if anybody can tell me where I might find a photo of Concorde in action over, or on the tarmac of, Aldergrove from that time. Thanks Ian
Hi Ian I was at that air show with my video camera and have footage of Concorde landing and taking off, if you are interested in a copy. Regards Michael Little

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Just came across this, Reckon the Ulster Aviation Society might be a good bet for info and possible photos; http://www.ulsteraviationsociety.org/

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Thanks very much indeed RoadRacer. A very interesting link. Michael - Thank you very much for your offer which I would like to accept. I have sent you a private message but if you don't receive it just let me know via this thread. A video would be absolutely great! Thanks again Ian

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Aldergrove airshow(s) I think I was at two Aldergrove airshows, took pics. of the Merchantman etc., might even have the programmes somewhere. Was the first and only time I'd ever seen a Vulcan in flight, might be able to find some Concord pics. from a mate who was also there. John UAS member

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Many thanks John. I'll look forward to seeing them. Regards Ian

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Belfast 1987 I was on Concorde that day (22 aug) out of Heathrow. I was also one of the very few who flew back on it that evening, off chocks at 1818. We did M 1.01 on the way there and M 1.02 on the way back. My records are clear though that it was G-BOAC. I also have different recollections of the flights to the previous correspondant. I have a number of the regs of the planes there, but like many of you, not all. I confirm G-APEJ Ajax was one of the Merchantmen present that day. If we pool what we know it might be almost a full list? Graham

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Hello Graham, How interesting as a few seconds ago I just finished sending a thank you note for a DVD which showed Concorde landing at Aldergrove during the Air Show. There was no coverage of the Concorde Fly Past and I began to wonder if we had done a circuit after all. I am sure you can put me right on that one. Perhaps you can tell me what other things I may have got wrong about the flight. I know that Concorde went back the same day and looking at the film it seemed to have gone up again before it finally returned to Heathrow but that may not have been the case if the film was spliced. I don't remember myself unfortunately. The film also showed a Tristar landing and I am sure that I went back on it the following day. Ian
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Concorde at Aldergrove shows Some pictures from both the first and second 80's Aldergrove airshows. My camera abilities where still under development...missing nose...missing tail. The Concorde on the runway was the first show, the air shots the second show. A few others as well to add to the thread.

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Thanks Airfixtwin What years were the first and secons shows?
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I think they were 85 & 87. They only had the two as far as I can remember.

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So the three flying Concordes are from the 87 one?
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Just checked up on the dates. The first show was, 17th August 1984. And the day was a rare sunny one that summer if I recall. The second show then, 22nd August 1987. The first two shots, on the runway and climbing away, are from the 84 show. As is the Vulcan, Sally-B and Catalina. The second two (in flight) Concorde shots are the 87 show. The original prints are on different paper( one set matt one glossy) so it's easy enough for me to tell which show is which. The A-10, Miles Gemini and Hunter are also 87 show. This Concorde shot is also from 87..maybe you were looking out? Think this was on the first flypast it did that day.
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Sadly my photo boxes yielded no photos of Concorde, nor the A-10 pair that I remember from the 1987 show. Those photos must have been discarded at some point. Sorry. My shaking 10-year-old hands did record this image of Ajax which I unearthed. The girl under the nose appears to be holding a Wellworths carrier-bag.
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