Catton Hall Fly-in 2004

A report and photographs from this popular fly-in by Chris Bland.

The Garden Party event, is now, after several successful years, well and truly associated with the Midlands Large Model Flying Group. They are based at Catton Hall in the heart of the Midlands and have great facilities. Every year we look forward to this event and I have managed to attend them all.

We have had a pretty miserable summer with lots of unsettled weather. This Sunday, 27th June, the weather was fine although not particularly sunny and there was a cross-wind. Such is the reputation of this event, that this didn’t put off the members and another large attendance resulted.

It was particularly nice to see some new members enjoying their first fly-in. The LMA is currently enjoying its largest membership ever. In my view the fly-ins, with their informal nature, are a great way to introduce yourself to the LMA. If you haven’t been to one you really should make the effort, they are great fun.

The event was again run with great friendliness and efficiency. Year on year the event seem to get better and bigger. The two photographs opposite show the pitts area was crowded with many different types of models. Great!

Photographs show a small selection of the models present include Mike Johnstone helping with the flight of a nice Stearman, Mark Chaplin’s very nice Tucano, Derek Martin’s Pheonix and Dave Johnson’s aging Extra 200 with its great smoke system. There were many other noteworthy models on display, but too many to show here.

Flying time was from 10.00am until 5.00pm with the usual break for lunch. Paul Savage and Ian Pottinger spent the day on transmitter control and the slotting board. Tony Hooper kept the flightline operating smoothly. We were all most grateful for their selflessness and time they, and the rest of the group, gave to make the fly-in successful.

Lunch was provided, at a modest price, by the usual excellent team headed by John Stevens. He could be found all day, cheerful, as always, at the BBQ stand cooking. Other light refreshments were available all day.

The lunchtime break gave members the opportunity to try their hand at the LMA Proficiency Scheme Test. I have been recently appointed as an examiner and, with Dave Johnson watching over my shoulder, put Mo through his paces. He flew great and easily met all the requirements – well done Mo!

Towards the end of the day we did have a heavy rain shower and that was the signal to most to pack up and head off home. Those of us who stayed behind were rewarded with another hour of flying in light wind. This was possibly the best flying to be had all day.

The traditional apple pie with cream and a glass of wine were donated by the LMA and just about everyone tucked-in. Some managed seconds!

Mike Jackson was given the ownerous task of deciding some prize winners. These were awarded bottles of wine, on behalf of the hosts, by our president Adrain Rowe-Evans. There were three categories:

1. Most interesting Model.

This was awarded to Derek Martin for his wonderful model of a 1936 Heston Pheonix. This model is shown in the photographs and is 25% scale. He has modelled the second one of the six that were produced. It flew to Australia in 1936.

The model is powered by a 3W 70i, weighs 38lb and has a wingspan of 10ft 1in. Derek produced the model starting from a 1/76th scale drawing.

2. Best Fight.

This was awarded to Pat Dare for a spirited flight with his Sea Fury.

3. Most Mature Flyer!

This was also awarded to Derek Martin. Other versions of this awarded were muted, but not suitable for printing!

So there you have it, another successful day organised by a friendly group of modellers. I’m looking forward to next year already.

Please click image to enlarge.


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