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Kent Spitfire and Hawker Hurricane team up at Biggin Hill

PUBLISHED: 11:53 14 April 2014

Spitfire

Spitfire

Archant

Festival of Flight has so much to offer

The Kent Spitfire will be joined by a Hawker Hurricane at Biggin Hill’s Festival of Flight this summer.

The fighters, both so synonymous with the Battle of Britain, will be flying from the airfield’s Heritage Hangar in a display for the Festival of Flight on Saturday, June 14.

They will evoke the sight and sound of former days of RAF Biggin Hill in the early 1940s when it was in the front line for the defence of London. Home-based squadrons were equipped with both types of aircraft during the period.

Both planes are owned by Heritage Hangar chief Peter Monk, who has nominated test pilot Dan Griffiths to fly the Mk IX Kent Spitfire and Red Bull race exponent Paul Bonhomme the Hurricane.

The Spitfire Company (Biggin Hill) is the engineering operation that restores and maintains these historic warbirds and will be providing a ground enclave at the festival of three Spitfires – two MK IXs and a Mk XVI – supported by the engineers who work on them.

Visitors to the festival can be photographed sitting in the cockpit of a Spitfire. The Spitfire trio will be joined by a wartime Harvard trainer and a Piper L4 Cub used by US forces for low-level reconnaissance in support of artillery.

Joe Hirst, of Heritage Hangar and a member of the engineering team, said the Festival of Flight marked the third anniversary for the company at Biggin Hill.

“Restoration and maintenance of these historic warbirds is a specialised area of the aerospace industry,” he said.

“We have been encouraged by the way in which the business has developed here during the three-year period. The festival will give us a fine opportunity to meet local people and show them the evidence of our engineering capabilities.”

Also at the festival will be the RAF Red Arrows team, celebrating their 50th display season at Biggin Hill, where the original team performed their first UK display in 1965.

The team are due to fly in during the morning and will be based at the airfield during the day, providing the Grand Finale with a full display at the end of the afternoon.

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