Not a dry eye

The RAF did us proud last night. Many of you will have watched the sunset ceremony from RAF Scampton televised live on BBC2. As I was there and have been travelling since, I have yet to see the recording but I can tell you that it was a very emotional event. The undoubted highlight was the landing of the BBMF Lancaster, and the few moments as it taxied from the runway right up to the band, who were playing the last few chords of The Dam Busters march. It was perfectly timed, and well worth several rounds of applause.
I’m told that the BBC covered this very well in glorious widescreen TV definition, but to get the real life experience of what it felt like being there, watch this video shot by my sister Sarah on her iPad, now posted on Youtube. This is what it was like on the ground.
(Well done, girl!)


5 thoughts on “Not a dry eye

  1. fleetfootmike May 17, 2013 / 10:12 am

    I was choked, just watching on TV. Compounded by ‘The Day Thou Gavest’ being our family’s funeral hymn.

    BTW, if you want to hear the ‘After Us The Flood’ play again (which I gather was performed at Scampton), it’s on iPlayer –

  2. Victor Brown May 17, 2013 / 11:16 am

    I was Head Boy at RAF Scampton Primary School in 1968 and still fondly remember the 25th Anniversary celebrations held on the base. My father was an AEO flying in Vulcans and in 83 Squadron, not 617, unfortunately. Last nights BBC2 coverage, brought back memories, some of which I’ll share with you and it certainly brought a tear to my eye!

    In 1968, most of the aircrew that made it back from the raid were still with us and many attended the 25th, as did Barnes Wallace and Denis Healey, who was Secretary of State for Defence at the time. My father took part in the 3 Vulcan scramble which was part of the day’s display. It was a much larger display than last night, with the Red Arrows and many other planes flying and on static display.

    I remember being very jealous of several of my classmates, who’s fathers flew in Vulcans with 617, as many of the visiting veterans were housed in the married quarters of serving aircrew. At least we all got the afternoon off school to attend and as watching the Dambusters film every year at the base cinema was obligatory for boys on the base, it was amazing to meet the real crew members and Barnes Wallace.

    I imagine the Lancaster flying yesterday was the same one as flew in 1968 40 years earlier? As I live in S. Cambridgeshire, I’m lucky in that the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight often passes over my village and came very close whilst out cycling last Sunday – still a thrilling sight and sound.

    It’s a shame that the Lancaster no longer stands at the gates of RAF Scampton, literally feet away from my old school playground. It is now housed at the RAF Museum in Hendon and I took my son along to see it a few years ago, regaling him of stories of how we used to sneak into it after cubs and have a real Lanc to play Dambusters in – happy days!

  3. Graeme Stevenson May 17, 2013 / 11:47 am

    It was very well done but I didn’t envy the band having that Lanc driving up behind them – looked scarily close!

  4. Graeme Jensen May 18, 2013 / 6:45 am

    Absolutley brilliant. Now to get the lump out of my throat!

  5. M J Bias May 18, 2013 / 5:02 pm

    Wow, that engine, that plane, those supermen. Truly heroes. X

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