Once again a Viking, this time ZE529, acheived a top 20 position in the Concours D Elegance competition at the Royal International Air Tattoo 2009.
621 VGS displayed two Vikings at one end of the Air Cadet display area with two Vigilants from 612VGS displayed at the other. With the aircraft open to the public for the majority of the event 621VGS were able to attract the attention of several hundred young people, not to mention adults, during the weekend.
Starting on the Wednesday, the aircraft were transported to RIAT and setup, staff were checked into the Air Cadet campsite accommodation. On the Thursday the aircraft were moved a number of times to allow for the Air Cadet display to expand slightly. With several of the team at Bucking Palace for the Project YOU Garden Party, it was left to a few to prep the aircraft for their inspection. Once inspected they had a chance to tour the static display.
During Friday, the VIP day and the Public Days at the weekend the stand was always busy. Amongst the guests to visit the stand was the Chief of the Air Staff, Prince Michael of Kent, Harry Potter star Matthew Lewis and The Lord Mayor of Bristol who has since completed a Gliding Scholarship with 621VGS.
621VGS entered a team into the Crew Challenge held at Friday Island water park. Led by Flt Lt Nick Blake, Flight Staff Cadets Nick Jeffery, Rebecca Kwo and Tristan Woolcock with CGI Nev Cullingford took part in pontoon building, raft racing, aircraft recognition, casualty rescue, dragon boat racing and an abstacle course.
With entry into the Crew Challange and the aircraft getting into the top twenty, six of the adult members of staff were able to attend the Gala Dinner with Guest of Honour HRH Princess Anne and Captain Timothy Lawrence. The RAF Band played for the lowering of the standard with an impressive display overhead consisting of Mk14 Spitfire with a Typhoon no more than a few feet from its tail. After the pre-dinner drinks in a marquee annex to a hanger the guests filed into the main hanger area for dinner – the tables set amongst a Typhoon, Global Hawk UAV and an EC275 helicopter.
Both aircraft were returned to Hullavington on the Monday morning ending a successfull weekend.