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Chocks away for right royal flypast

PUBLISHED: 21:20 06 June 2008 | UPDATED: 20:35 05 July 2010

ONE of the most spectacular line up of aircraft is set to form in the skies over the Waveney area later this month.

The Royal Air Force celebrates its 90th anniversary launching what promises to be the most impressive display of its aircraft for many years; the occasion being the flypast in honour of the Queen's official birthday.

ONE of the most spectacular line up of aircraft is set to form in the skies over the Waveney area later this month.

The Royal Air Force celebrates its 90th anniversary launching what promises to be the most impressive display of its aircraft for many years; the occasion being the flypast in honour of the Queen's official birthday.

The large formation is set to converge over the Southwold area, en route for their rendezvous with the Battle of Britain Flight as they head to The Mall to make their flight over Buckingham Palace, on Saturday, June 14.

If things follow their usual pattern there should be several sightings of the planes from 11am as they organise themselves before heading off along a route over the A12.

The formation leaders will be the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight including a Hurricane, a Spitfire and the UK's last airworthy Lancaster of some 7,300 produced. To keep down their flying hours and because of their low air speed they will not come to Southwold but are due to depart from an airfield near London.

Then will follow the aircraft which will have left Waveney some 20 minutes earlier which include a C-130 Hercules transport with two B200 Super King Air training aircraft; nine Typhoons; a VC10 K3 air refuelling tanker with a Sentry AEW1, the RAF's “eye in the sky” with the “frisbee” on top; nine Tornado F3s in diamond formation; a C-17A Globemaster III transport; a Nimrod MR2 maritime reconnaissance aircraft with two Tornado F3s; a Tristar C2 transport/tanker with two BAe125 CC3s of 32 the Royal Squadron; and finally 16 Tornado GR4s in diamond formation.

If the weather is poor or in the event of technical or other operational problems, the flypast will take place during the afternoon, said

Geoff Dann, of the Lowestoft Aviation Society.

It is also understood that there will be at least one rehearsal during the week leading up the flypast. It will set up over the Southwold area and make for RAF Waddington, in Lincolnshire, which will be standing in as Buckingham Palace, with Wednesday, Thursday and Friday being earmarked as possible rehearsal opportunities, to allow for bad weather.

Mr Dann added: “I think this flypast, and what we hope to see of it over the Waveney area, is going to be something not to be missed.

“It is amazing that the RAF is able to find the time and the hardware to mount such a large and extensive display. They have certainly pulled out all the stops to make this double celebration of the Queen's official birthday and the Royal Air Force's 90th anniversary such a spectacular event. One can only wonder if this sort of spectacle will ever be repeated on this grand scale and in our local skies. We are very fortunate to have this opportunity.”

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