Report by Chris Bland. Photographs taken by Chris Bland, Rose Bland and Jon Horne.
I have not been able to attend the main Catton show for the last few years. So I was pleased when this year I got the opportunity to visit and I was particularly interested to see how the show had changed.
As this photograph illustrates, the show was well supported and I think it has got quite a bit bigger in terms of the number of models that present. I was not really surprised by this since the organisers are well known for being very friendly and welcoming. The promise of a good weekend in great company is really what the LMA events are about.
There was a good variety of the larger 50% scale models about as well.
There was a really good selection of models including those flown in a scale fashion and those well known for spectacular manoeuvres. Here you can see James Morris who has gained quite a reputation in the last couple of years with his large hovering Pitts.
Personally, I prefer the models that aim to replicate the characteristics of the full-size. This model of Roger Bale’s is one of the most recent additions to the LMA’s display circuit. Now that Roger has got to grips with the model I have never seen him fly as well. It is an absolute cracker of a model finished as only Roger knows how.
This is a new model that was displayed on Saturday, but did not fly. This Corsair was built by Trevor Davis form a Nick Zirolli plan. It is powered by a Bryson 70cc engine, uses Robert retractable undercarriage and weighs 42lb. It is wonderfully finished and Trevor has even paid a lot of attention to the cockpit detail.
Another new model, which also did not fly, is the attractive Beech of Steve Foxon.
Another Zirolli plan produced this nice Dakota. Unfortunately, it crashed and was totally destroyed. The remains have been passed on and it will reemerge, probably in a year’s time.
Another of the biggies is this Skyvan, built by Andy Johnson, but now in the hands of Derek and Neil Whitfield. The model is over ten years old, but looks like it has lots of life yet.
Airliners have grown in popularity as worthy of modelling in the last few years. This is one of several that are now commonly seen.
Please click image to enlarge.
The people at Catton made a great effort to give the show a theme of WWII. They did this by having a display of military vehicles, by the judicial use of sandbags to make barriers and wall, creating some great painted backdrops and by the variety of posters printed in the hospitality tent. I thought this was really great. It added a fun element to the weekend.
They also continued the theme into some of the flying slots. Here a team of pilots await for the scramble bell to be rang……
……… and the screeching cries from Vince. They ran full pelt from one end of the flightline to get the WWII fighter display started.
Poor Dave Horton, must have run off-course. He had not been seen all weekend, perhaps this was the reason why.
By careful invitation, the Catton group also arranged plenty of other activities including a model boat display and train rides.
The White Lions Scooter club were also present with some of their immaculate vehicles.
Returning to the model aircraft the range was vast. Helicopters have featured more in the LMA shows over the last year as show organisers seek to widen the range for the public to enjoy.
It was nice to see this modle flying again in the hands of Fred Jackson’s son. It was just one of many WWII aircraft modelled.
Catton is the home of the WWI flying circus. For some reason I always seem to get a respectable photograph of this one.
Included to annoy the pilot, camera shy membership secretary, Gary Armstrong, prepares to take-off his Jungmeister. An understated pilot he is always seen flying a smooth and realistic schedule.
There are some really good displays of aerobatic models around these days. Here is an Extra 300S in a ‘pass’.
Electric models are always good fun too. Here is the Avro York built by Roy Salter and now flown by Andy Johnson.
Catton have done this chuck glider competition for the youngsters for a few years now, and very popular it is too. It adds greatly to the entertainment as part of the family day out.
A great photograph of Andy Johnson’s new B17 taken by Jon Horne.
Another Fred Jackson built model is the fabulous Me 109, now owned by Tony Hooper.
At the request of the Chairman, my wife took this shot of some of the organisers, pilots and helpers who put on the show. Feel free to applaud these people who weekend after weekend travel around the country promoting the LMA. If you are not one of us, why join in, its a great family.
So, what was my verdict the latest offering of a public show by the Catton based team? Well, I thought it was great. I had a great time in good company and even managed a few flights. What could be better than that. I hope to make it back next year.
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