Something for Everyone!

Alan Warnes visited this year’s Royal International Air Tattoo and gives an overview of events.

DURING A summer that brought both torrential downpours and glorious sunshine, the weekend of July 16-17 was blessed with blue skies and warm weather for the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT). Having seen the weather forecast, most families must have decided to make the trek to RAF Fairford. Gloucestershire, on the first day of the weekend, preferring to relax elsewhere on Sunday. That must be the assumption if we take into account the startling difference in the number of people at Fairford on the two

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RIAT O4

TНЕ ROYAL International Air Tattoo (RIAT) continues to attract more interest from the military aviation enthusiast than any other airshow in the world. It is also one of the United Kingdom’s biggest public events.

In its heyday in 1995, the International Air Tattoo (as it was then called) attracted over 200,000 people and a massive 300+ military aircraft, even though there were severe traffic problems for visitors and despite the fact that at £20 the admission charge appeared inflated. The show was a financial success, which should have been reflected in the contributions to the RAF Benevolent Fund Enterprises (RAFBFE),

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Riat Fairford.

THE 1999 Royal International Air Tattoo which took place during July 24-25 was hot…and we are not just referring to the temperature. The event attracted a record-breaking 483 aircraft, and crowds for the weekend reached 190,000. Easily attracting the most attention was the B-2A Spirit which was parked at the western end of the static line-up, and flew on both days.

Although the massed ranks of aircraft contained many regulars, there were also some very interesting items. How many people noticed that the Saab Viggen was an upgraded Block D variant, complete with four AMRAAMs? Only two squadrons will receive

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