Express & Star

Cosford Air Show: A showcase for the RAF

The theme of this year's Cosford Air Show is Take Flight.


Watch more of our videos on Shots!
and live on Freeview channel 276

Organisers are hoping that the attractions at tomorrow's show will help kick-start an enthusiasm in aviation and potentially a career in the RAF.

Squadron Leader Chris Wilson said: "The main purpose of the RAF Cosford Air Show is to showcase to the public what their Royal Air Force does for them in the defence of the United Kingdom, both at home and abroad.

"With that in mind, visitors will see a wide range of the Service’s fast jets, large transport aircraft and helicopters in the air and on the ground. They will also be able meet many of the people who fly, maintain, and support these aircraft and gain an understanding of the wide range of careers available in the RAF."

Cosford Air Show is the last remaining RAF-organised air show anywhere in the world.

With an abundance of static aircraft and a diverse range of activities on the ground, and a full afternoon of displays in the air, organisers are promising something for everyone, from the ages of eight to 80.

Last year's Cosford Air Show

Sq Ldr Wilson said: "Highlights to watch out for will be the chance to see for the first time anywhere a role demonstration by an F-35 Lightning from 617 Squadron at RAF Marham.

"This aircraft has performed flypasts at previous air shows, but this year will see a new, longer, and more dynamic display.

"The RAF’s Typhoon fast jet is always a firm favourite, and this year sees the aircraft return with a striking new livery to mark the 80th anniversary of D-Day."

"The world-renowned Red Arrows, a firm crowd favourite, return with a 9-ship formation for the first time in several years.

"The Royal Auxiliary Air Force is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and the air show has been chosen as one of the main national events to mark their centenary.

"As well as celebrating their 100 years, expect to see auxiliary squadrons from across the United Kingdom showing off what they do in support of logistics, security and force protection, and other vital functions in support of Defence.

"Of course, the RAF Cosford Air Show also attracts displays from outside of the RAF and from outside of the United Kingdom and this year is no different.

"The French Air and Space Force are big supporters of this year’s air show and visitors can look forward to some amazing – and very noisy – displays from their Couteau Delta twin Mirage 2000D display and their Rafale.

"The Rafale has performed at RAF Cosford before and is always very popular.

"The Couteau Delta has not and promises to be one of this year’s highlights.

"Civilian-owned highlights are the WWII American bomber, the B-17 Flying Fortress and the American-built flying boat, the Catalina. Vintage jets providing more noise are the de Havilland Vampire and the Jet Provost," he adds.

The Red Arrows

On the ground, visitors will be able to enjoy lots of different interactive aeronautically focused Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) displays.

"These STEM displays are primarily designed to showcase aeronautical engineering to young people, highlighting the value of studying maths and science at school and allowing a better understanding of what careers are available within the aviation industry.

"Also on the ground will be re-enactors covering D-Day and elements of the Cold War; as always, visitors will also have access to the RAF Museums Midlands extensive collection," said Sq Ldr Wilson.

Organisers are urging visitors to plan for a typical British summer and be ready for both rain and heat and have appropriate clothing and headwear.

The temperature in 2023 reached just over 27°c on the airfield. Free water will be available on the airfield, but it is recommended that visitors, particularly families, arrive with plenty of fluids. Suncream is a must, the airfield is very open and even on the greyest day, it possible to become sunburned.

The organisers have taken steps to ensure good Wi-Fi access across most of the site and cash machines will be available on the day; however, it is recommended as a contingency that visitors bring plenty of cash with them should they wish to purchase anything.

Lastly, the air show is advanced ticket only. If you haven’t already purchased a ticket, please don’t travel to the air show as no tickets will be available to purchase at the entry gates.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.