At the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018, we will look back over 100 years of RAF History. Our aim this year is to join the RAF to commemorate and celebrate, whilst inspiring the next generation. It promises to be an unforgettable weekend at the scene of one of the world’s most famous battlefields – the skies above Biggin Hill.
The world’s first independent Air Force was born in the heat of battle during World War One.
From defending the army in their trenches, to defending the civilian population in their beds; from taking the attack to the heart of the enemy, to delivering humanitarian relief; from Cold War deterrence to recent operations in the Middle East – the RAF has demonstrated unwavering commitment and is rightly recognized as one of the most innovative, professional and progressive air forces in the world.
Throughout its RAF history, Biggin Hill played a key role in air defence. At the forefront of technical development, Biggin Hill pioneered and developed the process of identifying and intercepting enemy aircraft as well as radio communication. Strategically positioned close to London, Biggin Hill was proud to be an RAF fighter station, a role it performed initially with biplanes, latterly with jets. But it is for its contribution to the Battle of Britain that Biggin Hill is best known. For those vital few weeks in our history, even in world history, Biggin Hill was in the front line living up to its motto “The Strongest Link”. How appropriate that the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight was formed at Biggin Hill so we never forget our Finest Hour.
On 18 August 1940, the Luftwaffe made an all-out effort to destroy Fighter Command. The air battles that took place on this day were amongst the largest aerial engagements in history. It was called The Hardest Day. At the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018, exactly 78 years later, we will recreate this battle as we fill the sky with Spitfires and Hurricanes – an unforgettable sight and sound.
So, come and join us as we commemorate 100 years of glorious RAF history at the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018.
At the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018, we will honour the RAF of today and the men and woman who serve.
From the earliest biplanes to the fast jets of today’s RAF, the bond between men, women and their aircraft has not changed over the past 100 years.
The RAF has always performed roles beyond its traditional delivery of military air power, with the speed, reach and agility of the service used for surveillance, intelligence and humanitarian work. The RAF operates in a complex world, adapting at pace to meet new challenges, such as those presented by cyber-attacks, as and when they arise. The highly trained servicemen and women of the RAF are agile, adaptable and capable, responding to challenges whenever and wherever they arise.
The ability to defend the UK and project air and space power around the world is testament to the unwavering dedication and skills of the men and women of the RAF. From defeating terrorist threats around the world to being ready, willing and able to quickly provide humanitarian relief – the RAF is always ready.
At this year’s airshow we welcome RAF personnel from a range of trades and backgrounds. The pilots may take the limelight but they are part of one team which includes engineers, logisticians, air traffic controllers – even padres and chefs! We also welcome the wider RAF Family which includes loved-ones and relatives along with the RAF charities which do such valuable work in supporting our airmen and women.
We are also delighted to have the RAF Aerobatic Display Team – The Red Arrows. Surely nothing represents the professionalism, dedication and ability of our RAF better than this world-renowned display team.
So, come and join us as we celebrate the RAF of today at the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018.
Over the two-day event, we will look forward to the next century of aviation and those young people that will make it happen.
The RAF has always been a highly technological organisation, even more so today, operating some of the most advanced military aircraft in the world including the Typhoon, Atlas A400M, and, coming into service shortly, the F-35 Lightning II and P-8A Poseidon.
The RAF launched its first satellite – Carbonite-2 – this year. Equipped with an electro-optical camera and HD colour video capability, it can capture highly detailed still or video images of the Earth’s surface.
The RAF offers amazing opportunities and is committed to creating a legacy that will inspire a new generation to help write the next chapters in its story. Whether that is running science, technology, engineering and maths programmes in schools, creating and funding apprenticeship schemes or just generally encouraging people to look to the future, the force’s relentless spirit of innovation is contagious.
Both the RAF and Biggin Hill provide young people with world-class training and experiences to kick-start their careers and to help them to fulfil their potential.
So, come and join us as we look to inspire the next generation of aviation professionals at the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight 2018.