RAF Scampton 2021

Visit to RAF Scampton

In September 1931, members of Grays Rotary Club took a trip on the Imperial Airways aeroplane “City of Coventry” from Hornchurch to Croydon.  90 years later 3 Rotarians flew from Thurrock to RAF Scampton to take part in an IFFR (International Fellowship of Flying Rotarians) meeting.
The “City of Coventry” was a luxurious aeroplane which was part for Imperial’s “Silver Wing” service.  It originally seated 20 passengers but later had 2 seats removed to accommodate an onboard bar.  In contrast our Cessna Skyhawk will seat 4 slim people or 3 normal sized people!  The Skyhawk, not surprisingly, doesn’t have a bar.
We took off at 8.30 and flew the 154 miles to RAF Scampton at an average ground speed of 117 mph arriving at 9.45.
Once there we met with other IFFR members including 3 more from Grays who had driven to the event and others who had flown in from around the country.  We had a tour of the heritage centre by Tom who was extremely knowledgeable.  The heritage centre is run by volunteers and well worth a visit.  RAF Scampton was the home base for the WWII operation Chastise (the Dambusters raid) in 1943.  Today it is home to the Mobile Meteorological Unit and the Red Arrows.
After lunch in the Mess we decided to leave promptly in order to avoid the rain that was beginning to look likely.
A good flight home and we had the opportunity to snap a few photographs of the local area as we came in to land at Thurrock.  As we exited the aeroplane I discovered that the Skyhawk does indeed have a bar.  I hit my head on a bar on the wing as I stood upright too early.  All in all a good day and our thanks go out to the IFFR for organising the event and RAF Scampton for allowing us to fly-in.

Photographs from the day

Rotary in 1931 with the "City of Coventry"
Our transport in 2021
Our destination
The final approach
Some of the other IFFR aircraft
WW1 fighter exhibited in the museum
Five Grays Rotarians with a Red Arrow
Our host, Tom, talking about the "Dambusters" raid
Back home to the Thames and Tilbury docks