This year marks a special anniversary, when the Armistice Day falls on 11/11/11.
Primetime Media will be accompanying the Airco DH.2 and it’s team from Wickenby Airfield in Lincolnshire on an historic trip to the Somme where the DH.2 aircraft operated during WW1.
Wickenby’s DH.2, piloted by Lincolnshire flyer Stewart Smith, will be flying over the proposed site of a memorial to Major Lanoe Hawker of 24 Squadron, and over the Thiepval Memorial. This memorial was erected for 72,195 missing British and South African men who died during the Battle of the Somme, and who have no graves.
Primetime producer Joanna White will be flying alongside the DH.2 recording each step of the journey from a Chipmunk aircraft and from the ground. The material will be used to produce a DVD which should be available next year.
Joanna is a little worried about how the weather in November could effect proceedings. She states: “This project is entirely subject to weather! Too much low cloud or high winds will prevent the WW1 aircraft from flying. However, if the weather is fine the sight of an original WW1 fighter crossing the channel and flying above the Somme will be very emotional”.
Vulcan XH558 has been featured on the BBC’s ‘Britain’s Hidden Heritage’ last night, when John Sergeant visited Doncaster Robin Hood Airport to meet the Vulcan to the Sky team and look around the aircraft.
Featuring heritage sites and objects of interest around Great Britain, the BBC decided to visit the Vulcan and meet the team who restored this iconic aircraft and the pilots who fly it today and who operated in them during the Cold War. The Vulcan is an aircraft which has captured the imagination of the people of this country, qualifying her to be thought of as British heritage.
John Sergeant is a self confessed aircraft lover and had a special interest in this aircraft as a school boy, dreaming he would one day be a Vulcan pilot. He was allowed to fly alongside XH558 in an Extra aircraft belonging the the Blades Aerobatic Team.
The piece featured the history of the Vulcan, with lots of archive including restoration footage recorded by Primetime for our Vulcan XH558 Restoration DVDs.
The programme is currently available to view on the BBC iPlayer, and if you’d like to find out more about the Vulcan Restoration series of DVDs then please visit our Online Shop.
To find out more about Vulcan XH558 or to support her by donation or buying merchandise please visit www.vulcantothesky.org.
The Lincolnshire skies were filled with the powerful throb of a kinner engine today, as the Airco DH2 replica of Wickenby Airfield flew for a video sortie.
There are no surviving examples of the WW1 DH2 and this replica Hublot was built in the 70s for film work. It languished untouched in a shed for several years until Gerry Cooper of Vintage Skunk Works obtained it in 2008. Gerry rebuilt this aircraft taking great pains to tension the wires correctly so it could both turn to the left and right inflight. Gerry said “It’s difficult to fly and it has taken us two years to get it rigged properly. During the First World War there was a period called the Eindecker Scourge caused by a small German aircraft able to fire guns through the propellor. So the British came up with their own idea, as they couldnt fire through the propellor, they decided to put the engine behind the aircraft and that’s what you see.”
The DH2 replica panerai is one of only two flying in the world, the other being in the Omaka Aviation Heritage Collection in New Zealand. The aircraft remains at its base at Wickenby, now in the hands of the airfield owners, and is flown and displayed by Stewart Smith. Primetime Media have been aiding Stewart in his collection of video and photographic footage. He hopes to use this to generate funds to help keep this magnificent aircraft flying long into the future. If you would like to offer support then please contact Stewart Smith.
View our short video made about the DH2:
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At 95 Ken Wallis should really be taking things easy and enjoying his old age. But this pioneering aviator, designer, engineer is still wowing crowds with his flying abilities on his home built Wallis Autogyro.
Primetime have been filming with Ken at his home in Norfolk as he welcomes some of today’s modern autogyro pilots and shows them around his amazing collection. Andrew Jones, instructor on the German MT03 autogyro, was welcomed to Ken’s strip recently where he was delighted to see first hand the aircraft that paved the way for his hobby in the UK. Ken is internationally acknowledged as the designer of the modern rotor head used in all of today’s aircraft, and although his aircraft are lighter and more powerful than a lot of today’s ‘gyros, many of his developments have influenced the modern aircraft.
The filming is for a new DVD documenting the story of the Autogyro in the UK, and looking at the sport today.
During the visit Ken climbed in to one of his two seat machines and demonstrated the flying abilities of his aircraft. A steep take of climb was follow by a series of very tight turns, more climbs and descents, and his famous ‘hands and legs off’ pass where he photographed the group of visitors on the ground for his collection.
Visiting pilot Andrew Jones adroitly summed up the display stating “as soon as he’s in the plane the 95 year old suddenly becomes a boy again”. He added “how could anyone not be inspired by that?”
The launch of our new DVD series produced with the Lincolnshire Film Archive has been well received with local TV news features being aired. BBC Look North recently presented a two minute package detailing the fascinating content of this film and talking to DVD researcher and narrater Alan Stennett about an era gone by. ITV’s Calendar News also featured the new DVD series showing much of the historic archive with scenes across the county.
During an interview Alan Stennett stated “Getting yourself on film then was very rare, very unusal and very expensive. So what is for us utterly commonplace to them was really new and really special. You really did think ‘crikey I’ve made it, I’m on film'”. With regard to historical seaside holidays Alan explained “There was Dad in his three-piece suit, waistcoat, jacket, trousers, tie heading down on to the beach. His wife following on in a long skirt and almost high healed shoes – that you wouldn’t really expect to see nowadays”.
Lincolnshire – A Century on Film DVD Series provides an insight into life in Lincolnshire in the early twentieth century. Featuring home movies and recordings of state visits there’s film dating from 1901 when cameras were massive, heavy and hand cranked.
Lancaster NX611 ‘Just Jane’ is to feature in a new DVD to be released by Primetime. Filming is just beginning, as talk is afoot that this Lancaster will soon begin the restoration to flight.
Over the bank holiday weekend the Aviation Heritage Centre hosted a model aircraft flying weekend with taxy runs by this wonderful Lancaster.
Our cameras captured the taxy runs, from inside and out, and filmed the excellent array of model aircraft. Over 50 different models were present with members of the Large Model Association travelling from all over the UK to fly and display their wonderful models.
With a few model Lancasters in attendance, we seized the opportunity to mount a minicamera on a large model flown by Andy Johnson. The flight was successful and provided a unique view from on top of a Lancaster (albeit a mini version) as it flew overhead East Kirkby Airfield and Just Jane.
Keep watching our website for more details about the release of this film – www.primetimevideo.co.uk. If you would like to be added to our Video eNewsletter list then please fill in the form below.