Cosford 2016

Well here we are once again at the LMA’s premier show, and to be honest I am feeling a little relaxed which is unnerving. Let me explain, I being involved with Cosford over a number of years and I have seen my fair share of dummies thrown out of the pram over that time period. To say the build up to this event can be very tense is an understatement, however this year it was claim and pleasant. Why you may ask! I don’t know, but let’s just say it was a welcome change.

On arriving Friday evening I was greeted by the usual pleasantries form my so called team mates. Like, oh you have arrived then, now all the work is done. You take your time setting up don’t mind us etc… See what I have to put up with! It’s not my fault that most of them are pensioners is it, I mean some of us have to work to keep them in the life style they are used to. So you see I am helping them they just don’t realise it. To stop them moaning, I help put up the PA system, to which a got a response I wish I had a camera so we can prove you do actually do some work, ‘bloody cheek’.

After my response (I won’t tell you what it was, you can draw your own conclusions) I set up camp and called it a night. Boy it was hot, not complaining though.

Let the show begin

Saturday morning, I jumped up and realised I had overslept, oh no too much happy juice last night, my head was pounding, I don’t usually get a headache, oh well! Quick wash and dressed and out into a very warm muggy day and the sky looked dismal, as I reached the fly line it was a hub of activity, planes as far as the eye could see the trade line seem to go into infinity. Wow!! Its HUGE! With all my gear in the car I decided to drive down to the TX tent and off load it. Rob Buckley already had a quiet of pilots waiting to book in and Neil Hutchinson, Dave Walker and farther and son team Peter and Dean Coxon were set up with cameras at the ready.

Although I felt I might be wasting my time taking pictures with so many already posed to do so I thought it was another good opportunity to get more practice in, so off I went.

Shutter at the ready

First real tester of my camera skills were the Dawn Patrol, these models are stunning and have attention to detail that is museum quality, at 1/3 scale, they were a photographer’s delight. It was also good to see them back at Cosford this year.

Hard to tell apart

Speaking of returns my next subjects where the 30% Scale Breitling Wing Walkers flown by Steve Holland, Richard Rawle with Sharron Stiles operating the wing walkers. Both planes and wing walkers where built by Richard and once again the attention to detail make it hard to detect which is real and which is model from some of the shots. I had forgot just how good this display was.

Best of British

One of my highlights and no doubt many others were the three British icons, that word is used very loosely these days but I feel these three deserve the title, I am of course talking about the Victor, Vulcan and Lancaster flight. One of the biggest crowd pleasers of the whole weekend. It is however difficult to capture on camera but it never stops you trying, Dave and Andy Johnson are the pilots and owners of the Vulcan and Victor, along with Steve Holland with the Lancaster dubbed as the British Heritage Flight it truly lives up to the name.

We Will Never Surrender

Cosford is known for its warbirds and bomber slots and this year was no exception, TJD did us proud with an array of fighter on display, the heavy’s where Ken Mc Cormack’s B17, Phil Robertshaw, Wellington Steve Holland Lancaster to name but a few but what seems to be coming more of a regular feature at these shows is bigger warbirds with radial engines up front, they have a fantastic sound which is more realistic as they come buzzing passed. Tony Hooper F4U Corsair, Brian Rawcliffe, Hawker Tempest II and Dave Pearson Hawker Seafury where the three that was displaying over the weekend. I can only hazard a guess as this looks to be the new warbird section that will be taking the lead at future shows as they become more affordable.

Pyrostropheic Timing

Imagine, the screen is set, the planes are circling ready to drop their bombs and nothing no explosions then as the planes pass in front of us the explosions go off in the distance. Got to be the worst timing of a simulated WWI and WWII bombing run ever, plus it lacked any sort of punch, it was to be honest a bit of a damp squid. For a premier show it was embarrassing to say the least. Let’s hope they can sort it for next year.

TV Stars

While the show was in full swing we had a film crew with us all weekend filming for the One Show the story is focused on our Chairman Dave Johnson and the three generations of his family building and flying large model aircraft. The star of the show will no doubt be Dave’s Vulcan, which seem to be plagued with engine problems every time it is the Cosford show. Never the less in true spirit of modelling it was sorted and flown over the weekend much to the delight of the crowds.


Night Fever

Cosford has been slated over the years as being dull and lifeless in the evenings and to be fair it did earn that title. However, the Show Committee have been working hard to put that right. It will never be a Weston Park event nor do the LMA want to be, but it is fair to say they have overcome a lot of issue that plagued the events.

The main one was evening and night flying. This is now common place at LMA shows with the emphasis being quiet flight after 8pm, screaming ducted fans and the like are banned for obvious reasons. For those who are not interested in the evening flying they now provide a community tent with live entertainment, inside PropGuy providing a licenced bar called Chocks Away! for those who require it. The latest addition to the evening entertainment is at around ten o’clock there is a flying pyrotechnic display provided by Rob Garner, which has gone down very well with everyone over the last two years.

Too round it all up then

To be fare apart from the disappointing pyro display though the day time Cosford was a great success and one of the best attended for years. It always seems to manages to attracted the best pilots from around the country and Europe, to display their fine models for the public to enjoy and to top it off this year we had some great weather, Sunday being the better day of the two. To mention all the pilots and people involved in putting this show on would take several pages so on behalf of the LMA show committee we would like to say thanyou!  So there you have it another year over for this event and long may it continue. If you have not been to a Cosford show for a few years, why not give 2017 a go I am sure you will be pleasantly surprised.





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