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Fairford gets off to a flying start

The gates have opened at the Fairford Air Show in Gloucestershire.

Final preparations have been made for what is the Biggest Air Show in the UK. The much anticipated debut of the most advanced fighter jet in the world - the F 35 B Lightning - and displays from the Red Arrows will be the highlights.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are also expected to be attending the event.

Air Tattoo pulls huge crowds to Fairford

The Vulcan and Red Arrows in clear skies over Fairford Credit: Royal Int. Air Tattoo

A bumper crowd of almost 150,000 people were treated to a spectacular display of aviation from across the globe during the three-day Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire.

Highlights included a massed flypast of vintage warplanes to mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. The Vulcan XH558 made its final Air Tattoo appearances before it retires at the end of this year. The delta-winged Cold War bomber performed dramatic solo displays followed by joint flypasts with the RAF Red Arrows on Saturday and Sunday.

The Red Arrows flank the Vulcan above the crowds Credit: Royal Int Air Tattoo

The airshow also hosted the international debut of the Japanese Kawasaki P-1 maritime patrol aircraft, which performed in the flying display. Five aerobatic display teams performed spectacular routines with the Patrouille de France, Patrulla Aguila from Spain, the Swiss PC-7 Team and the Royal Jordanian Falcons joining the Red Arrows in thrilling the crowds.

In total 232 aircraft from 27 air arms representing 22 countries took part in the Air Tattoo.

“As well as providing one of the world’s greatest aviation spectacles, the Air Tattoo plays an important role in support of UK defence diplomacy. The 2015 airshow once again provided a relaxed yet dynamic meeting place where senior industry figures and military chiefs could come together to celebrate the best of aviation."

– Andy Armstrong, Air Tattoo Chief Exec

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The Royal International Air Tattoo in stats and pictures

There are:

15,0000
people visiting over 3 days
1,500
volunteers
Jodie Kidd speaks to a pilot ahead of the Battle of Britain memorial flight Credit: ITV News
511
traffic signs to get to site
14,500
meals for volunteers
Jodie Kidd poses by a plane Credit: ITV News
5,000
At least the number of roadside cones used
100
At least structures put up on site
£1.5mil
the money pumped into local economies in Wiltshire and Gloucestershire

Special tribute to Battle of Britain takes place at Fairford

The world's biggest military air tattoo is underway at RAF Fairford, attracting huge crowds from around the world.

Aerial displays will take place all weekend, but today a very special tribute was made to mark 75 years since the Battle of Britain.

We've been sent some footage of the special moment.

F-35 won't appear at Fairford after fire on board

Prince Charles was to welcome F-35 to Fairford Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The F-35 stealth fighter jet, which was to make it's first international display debut at the Royal International Air Tattoo in Fairford has been cancelled. The planes has been grounded in America after a fire in one of the planes.

The display was going to be the highlight of Prince Charles' visit to the site tomorrow.

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