Spring is here. The birds are singing, the leaves unfurling on the trees while the daffodils are blooming. May is my favourite month of the year as the Countryside comes out of its winter slumber.
But hang on, the digit on the month is still saying 4! This isnt May, its still April.
The Shuttleworth Collection got the jump on everyone this year and started the UK airshow season off a week early with the April Flying Day. The day started with beautiful sunshine, but this is England in April so it couldnt last. But that didnt stop the Engineers and Volunteers from enjoying the bright early morning sunshine as they pulled the aircraft out for their first display of the year.
If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools
That verse from the poem “If” by Rudyard Kipling encapsulates in verse the season so far at the Shuttleworth Collection. After weeks, nay months of the wettest drought on record the weather appeared to turn and it looked like there would be an airshow in the skies over Old Warden.
The traditional Medieval English poem begins thus.
Sumer is icumen in,
Well after the cancellation of the opening display of the The Shuttleworth Collection‘s season due to flooding, and the low grey cloud and cold temperatures of this, the first evening display; I am inclined to think it isn’t! However it takes more than a bit of bad weather to put off the volunteers and staff off.
The airfield is usable, ladies and gentlemen, we have an airshow!
One could be forgiven for thinking Shuttleworth Air Displays were like buses, you dont have one for weeks then two turn up almost at once! Thankfully though, they are more punctual than public transport and are an altogether more pleasant experience. The August Evening Display at the Shuttleworth Collection provided a cornucopia of air-borne delights, some almost as old as manned flight itself.
To twist another analogy, as far as Shuttleworth is concerned, you cannot have too much of a good thing. Especially when the wind drops and the Eds come out. (more…)