Header image: The 2018 BBMF Experience Day prize winner Martin Wright and his guests getting ‘hands on’, helping the BBMF ground crew to push out Hurricane PZ865. (All photos: Clive Rowley)
The RAF Memorial Flight Official Club's ballot prize for March is a fantastic, ‘money cannot buy it’, chance of a lifetime for Club members to win an Experience Day with the BBMF at RAF Coningsby.
The lucky winner will be able to bring up to three guests to RAF Coningsby on Saturday 29th June, one of the planned weekend flying days of the 2019 display season, which is also Armed Forces Day. Weather and aircraft availability permitting, the BBMF’s programme for that day includes the Lancaster, a Hurricane and a Spitfire starting up, taxying out and taking-off to cover various events, before landing away at Southampton. The Dakota, another Spitfire and a further Hurricane are also scheduled to depart individually, returning to Coningsby later in the afternoon. All in all, it is a busy and exciting day in prospect.
The lucky winner and guests will be able to experience this activity during a typical BBMF flying day from behind the scenes, with the engineers preparing the aircraft, the aircrew planning and briefing, and the aircraft starting up, taxying out, departing and returning. There will be opportunities to meet and chat with the BBMF pilots, crews and ground crew during the day and to watch the aircraft coming and going from a very privileged stand point. There will also be the chance to get ‘up close and personal’ with the BBMF aircraft, those involved in the flying and others in the hangar.
The winner and guests will be permitted access to the RAF Station at Coningsby, via the main gate (the BBMF Visitor Centre is closed), and inside the BBMF HQ, which is not normally open to the public. The escort and host for the day will be Squadron Leader (retired) Clive Rowley, a former fighter pilot and Officer Commanding BBMF, and now the Flight’s publications editor.
This is the fourth time that we have been able to provide an ‘Experience Day’ at the BBMF as one of the Club’s ballot prizes; an indication of how much the Flight values the Club and its members. The winner is sure to have a very special day. Previous Experience Day ballot prize winners have said: “It was such a wonderful opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes… we will have lots of memories to treasure” and, “Our host really made our day. The ground crew also went out of their way to make the day special, and the pilots treated us to our own fly past and took time to make us feel welcome. A fantastic and memorable day.” Last year’s winner Martin Wright said: “The day was far more than we expected and beyond, it was utterly unreal. Words can't really describe what I witnessed and did. It was an unbelievable day.”
(Note that this prize is not transferable and is only available for 29th June 2018. Flying is dependent on the weather. Other terms and conditions will also apply).
All in all, this is a fantastic and exclusive prize, available only to Official Club members. If you’re not already a member, make sure you join the Club by Sunday 31st March 2019 to be entered into the prize draw.