Monday, 31 December 2012

Looking Back At 2012

2012 has been a strange year for aviation, with a large chunk of the 'flying season' seeing most of the south east of England 'closed' due to the Olympic airspace restrictions & then a summer which never really seemed to kick off all being finished off by being the wettest year on record! Despite this the optimism of the great British aviator seems to be never failing, with airfields across the country still putting out a wide spread of events to attract people.

Looking back at the post I put together this time 12 months ago & seeing my remark 'Overall 2011 has been a quieter year' I look at the number of posts this year, some 21 less! I think it's a well justified comment to say that 2012 has again not quite delivered the perfect year for aviation that many hoped for, I can certainly say that we've made many last minute cancellations in the face of some questionable weather. There are however some events which shine through & I've listed my favourite 5 from this year in this post, I think it's also worthy of note that the 2012 LAA Rally saw it's largest attendance since it's re-launch this year, maybe it's not all doom & gloom after all...

What I've chosen for number 5 isn't actually an event, rather a visit to the excellent Midland Air Museum back in February. We visited just after the snow had reasonably cleared so that there wouldn't be any problems with getting there, but there was still some snow on the ground which added a nice extra dimension to the pictures together with the warm sun colour tone.

My choice for fourth place choice is Otherton's 'Heritage Fly-In' in September, this mainly microlight airfield just off the M6 holds a number of events throughout the year with the aim of attracting a different sort of aircraft to each of them (but anyone is welcome to attend all of them!). Having previously been there for their 'Summer Fly-In' which was another one the weather claimed we headed back for another go! The locals are very friendly & the owner of G-CCXN offered to take me for a quick spin to get some pictures of the airfield from overhead & my sincere thanks to him!
Otherton Viewed From The East

In 3rd place is the only event to appear in both this years & last years top fives and I feel with good reason! It is the Scrumpy N' Cheese Fly-In at WestonZoyland, the 'Zoyz Boyz' put on a top event which seems to offer something a bit different to other events in the calendar and therefore attracts a good attendance! Aviation, live music, all-day BBQ & ample stocks of cider; what more could you want?!
More Hardy Campers Braving The British Summer

Coming in second place is my personal favourite event from Breighton this year, their Hibernation Fly-In in October. This airfield in Yorkshire is a fantastic place to visit as a photographer or for anyone who has an interest in aviation! The light is behind you all day & there's hardly a moment where there's not something going on to look at! You'll always have someone come up to you for a chat about something aviation related & the cafe does a grand job in serving up cups of tea & various pilots favourite (high-cholesterol!) meals. I'd highly recommend a visit in 2013.
G-BVGZ (152-17) & G-BZNW (K2048) 

Taking my top spot in 2012 is a rather chilly day in early November which was spent in the hangar of Huey UK & their Huey, Loach & Wasp helicopters! The Huey & Loach are runners with the Wasp a static exhibit due to the lack of comprehensive records for it. My attention was drawn to this open day by the owner of this site dedicated to supporting the efforts of Huey UK & generally promoting Huey's! Again if you get a chance to book onto a future event I highly recommend that you take it!

G-OHGA (69-16011)

Here's to a dryer 2013!

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