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  Farnborough International Airshow, Hampshire, 19th July 2008


Review - This was aviationphoto's second visit to Farnborough, the last time being 10 years ago when the show finished with Concorde powering off into the setting sun, with dramatic lighting being a lasting impression of the day.  Unfortunately this year the sun remained resolutely hidden for most of the show although fleeting appearances allowed some good photographic conditions.

Highlight for many, and contributing to the huge crowds on the weekend shows, was the mighty Avro Vulcan XH558 performing its first display season for many years and a tribute to what can be achieved with gritted determination.  Despite the cold war bomber's appearance at this international aviation trade show a major sponsor still eludes the team and the Vulcan's airworthy future still hangs in the balance.  Please support the efforts to keep this charismatic aircraft where she belongs and join the Vulcan to the Sky Trust  http://www.vulcantothesky.org/

Another major draw was the display by the Airbus A380, this massive machine thundering around the sky with an agility rarely seen from a major airliner. Participation from modern military machines was somewhat muted with a trio of Eurofighter Typhoon, Lockheed Martin F-16CJ and Boeing F/A-18F providing afterburning fast jet muscle. 

The Red Arrows put in a great display, the precision of their formations apparent in the photographs above, the Blades doing the same but on a smaller scale.  Other historic interest included the Great War Display Team, Carolyn Grace in Spitfire ML407 and Plane Sailing's PBY-5A Catalina.

Overall the A380 and the Vulcan made the show worthwhile but the lack of space on the site, the long 20 to 25 minute walk from the train station (described as 5 minutes by the marshals trying to reduce the size of the queue waiting for the shuttle buses) and the absence of some exotics in the flying programme left the reviewer feeling a little disappointed in the day.

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