Scampton Airshow: Behind the scenes
Photo: Rory Underwood and Squadron Leader Mike Ling (Red 10)
With just four weeks until the inaugural Scampton Airshow (9th-10th September 2017), LincsMag were invited to RAF Scampton to meet some of the people behind this exciting event.
Organising such a large-scale event on a busy operational military base is no easy task. RAF Scampton is home to many serving personnel and the logistics behind this two day spectacular require the hard work of many people. Over seven hundred volunteers have joined the ranks to help provide thousands of visitors with an entertaining and informative experience. We caught up with two of the volunteers ahead of the event.
Rebecca Sawyer and Stephan Prest are both volunteers for the inaugural Scampton Airshow. Stefan told us that he first became interested in volunteering for the show after seeing a poster displayed at the gliding club at Kirton Lindsey. Stefan who lives in Lincoln, applied for his role over six months ago and he explained to us about the application and interview process which he had been through to get the position he has been given.
Stefan will be based at the Media Centre during the two day event and it is expected to be a busy place with lots of national and international press interested in attending.
Rebecca Sawyer is another of Scampton Airshow's army of volunteers but she comes with a background of experience having worked at the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT) over the past couple of years. Rebecca will be volunteering Front of House during the show which means she will be accompanying visitors throughout the event. Although experienced at working on large-scale events, Rebecca who is from Kirton Lindsey is particularly excited about being part of an airshow here in Lincolnshire.
Photo: Rebecca Sawyer and Stephan Prest at RAF Scampton
It is hard to talk about RAF Scampton without mentioning the Red Arrows. Our country's (and arguably the world's) most famous aerobatic display team. This is the first time the home of the Red Arrows has been open to thousands of visitors. At our preview day, Squadron Leader Mike Ling MBE (also known as Red 10!) explained how exciting it will be to have thousands of visitors being entertained on their home airfield.
As well as supervising practises and displays, Red 10 provides the commentary for the team and so it will be his voice we hear at the event as he talks us through the various breath-taking manoeuvres that the team will demonstrate.
Mike has been with the Red Arrows for nine years and since joining the team he has served as Red 3 in 2008, Red 7 in 2009 and Red 6 in 2010 before becoming Supervisor in 2011. Mike and the team have a very busy summer schedule with displays right through the season from June through to September.
Scampton Airshow will be one of the team's last performances before heading into the tough winter training period. Red 10 told us how special it will be for the Red Arrows team to look down and see the crowds watching them from their home base.
Scampton Airshow is a new and exciting event which has been designed to appeal to a wide range of people. The team at Scampton have a number of Ambassadors who are working hard to promote the show. The organisers are particularly keen to encourage families with children to attend the event and this is reflected in the free passes which are available for under 16s. Building on their experience at RAF Fairford, the organisers have arranged a Techno Zone which will provide visitors with the opportunity to get "hands on" with a range of equipment that is used in science and engineering.
Keith Batty is one of the Ambassadors for Scampton Airshow and using his knowledge of education he is promoting opportunities for young people to get involved in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) at the show. If you have a young budding engineer or scientist in your household, be sure to visit the Techno Zone and check out some of the exciting activities that will be provided by industry representatives.
Photo: Keith Batty
CharityScampton Airshow Limited are the company behind this new airshow. The event has been established to promote the Royal Air Force's heritage whilst also raising funds to support the work of the Royal Air Force Charitable Trust (RAFCT). RAFCT was established in 2005 and over the past twelve years the Trust has awarded £4 million to people and projects in need.
RAFCT supports initiatives that benefit serving RAF personnel, cadets and other young people as well as veterans. One of their projects involves providing support for young people to train as pilots. In 2016-17 £20000 was awarded to RAF Flying Clubs' Association to support their Junior Ranks' Pilot Scholarship Scheme.
At the preview day, LincsMag were introduced to two young people who have benefitted from the Trust's charitable mission. Profits raised at Scampton Airshow will help to provide more training opportunities for young people through the work of RAFCT.
Tickets still availableScampton Airshow takes place on 9th and 10th September. Gates open at 8am and the event finishes at 7pm. The event is family-friendly and standard 1 day admission tickets cost £39.50 for adults with accompanied under 16s admitted free of charge. Organisers are reminding people to purchase their tickets in advance as there will be no tickets available on the gate. Scampton Airshow have a limited number of upgrade tickets available which include access to a flightline enclosure as well as on-airfield parking. For full information and to purchase tickets, visit the organisers' website at www.scamptonairshow.com