New aircraft land at the Shuttleworth Collection

Tydd St Mary FC Charter Standard
Tydd St Mary FC Charter Standard

Two new replica First World War aircraft have arrived at the Shuttleworth Collection – all the way from New Zealand.

The pair of BE2es arrived by container this month and will be based at the Old Warden aerodrome for the next few months.

A team from Bedfordshire based Flying Restorations will assemble both aircraft over the coming weeks, with a view to flying them later this year.

The planes have arrived courtesy of world-renowned aircraft restoration and manufacturing company TVAL.

The BE2es will stay at Old Warden until their hanger at Stow Maries is ready later in the year.

One of the aircraft is part of Oliver Wulff’s collection on loan to WAHT and is in the markings of a 7 Squadron aircraft based at Odiham.

In 1916 the squadron standardised on BE2s aircraft, which were used in an observation role until replaced by RE8s in 1917.

The other is in the marking of 37 Squadron, which 
was formed as an experimental squadronin Suffolk, in April 1916.

In September 1916 it was reformed as a home defence squadron, with headquarters at Woodham Mortimer in 

Aircraft operated from a variety of landing grounds including Stow Maries. The principle role of the squadron was to provide an eastern line of defence against aircraft or airships attacking London.

WAHT is seeking a donor to acquire the aircraft so that it can stay permanently in Essex when Stow Maries is restored to its full WWI glory by 2018.

The BE2es will be on display and taking part in the Shuttleworth Air Days when they are not supporting the planned WAHT events.

Shuttleworth will be celebrating Armed Forces Day with a Military Pageant on Sunday, June 29. Advance tickets are £20 for adults, children free.

As well as the air show, there will be live music, children’s crafts, re-enactment groups and a historic vehicle parade.

A shuttle bus will leave from Biggleswade train station at 11.30am, the return journey will leave Shuttleworth at 5.30pm from the main gate in front of the visitor centre.

The cost of bus tickets is £9.50 return, £5 single, children up to 16 free. You can purchase airshow tickets, at gate price on the bus - cash only.