Whittman Field, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA 25-31 July 2022 Report by Peter and Kim Davison This event just keeps getting bigger! Attendance: Approximately 650,000 – A record total (previous mark: 642,000 in 2019) and 7 percent above 2021’s attendance of 608,000. Total aircraft: More than 10,000 aircraft arrived at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh and other airports in east-central Wisconsin. At Wittman alone, there were 18,684 aircraft operations in the 11-day period from July 21-31, which is an average of approximately 121 takeoffs/landings per hour when the airport is open. Total showplanes: 3,226 included: 1,375 registered in vintage aircraft parking, plus 1,156 homebuilt aircraft (up 6 percent over 2021), 369 warbirds (up 5 percent from ’21), 137 ultralights, 87 seaplanes, 77 aerobatic aircraft, and 25 rotorcraft.
Farnborough International, Hampshire, UK 18-22 July 2022 Report by Peter Davison and Colin Coulthard After the excitement of the Air Tattoo (see previous post), this was a cooler and toned down event; now lacking the public weekend with only the Friday for educational visitors. Sadly, those exhibitors that previously started dismantling before the public got to be 'inspired' now started departures on Thursday with even some star attractions like the 777-9 departing back to their test programs. Having attended all the shows since 1964 I have never seen such open spaces at this world famous showcase now becoming a four day trade show. Hopefully the sales generated will cover the costs.
RAF Fairford, Gloucestershire, UK 15-17th July 2022 Report by Peter Davison and Colin Coulthard Well, what a scorcher! Record temperatures, record crowd and a mind-blowing selection of exhibits both static and flying. After two years off the calendar a memorable return of the World's greatest military airshow. Given the global security situation the amazing gathering of aircraft from across the planet pays tribute to the atmosphere of cooperation and mutual support created by the team behind this inspirational event.
Turweston Airfield, Buckinghamshire, England, Sunday 3rd July 2022 Report by Peter and Kim Davison Turweston is unusual in these days of General Aviation airfield closures in that it has grown in status over the last decade. This is partly due to it being the Headquarters of Britain's Light Aircraft Association (LAA) with a new tower, restaurant plus enhanced library and training facilities on site.
The annual HeliRussia trade fair, which is held under the auspices of Russia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade, took place at the Crocus Expo exhibition centre in Moscow on 19th-21st May 2022 for the 15th time – a minor jubilee. In better days the event, which is traditionally held at this venue, was billed as Europe’s largest helicopter industry exhibition; however, HeliRussia-2022 was held on an unusually modest scale, occupying just one hall instead of the normal two. While the COVID-2019 pandemic is on the retreat, due to political developments all major foreign participants chose to stay away. Of the 108 participants only seven were non-Russian, and none of these were helicopter manufacturers.
European Business Aviation Exhibition, Geneva PALEXPO 23-25 May 2022 Report by Peter Davison & Colin Coulthard A welcome return post Covid for this international showcase for Business Aviation. Given the downturn for Commercial Airlines there is now a growth spurt for Executive travel with new models and ranges heralding various innovations.
Popham Airfield, 30 April-2 May 2022 Report by Peter and Kim Davison As Covid restrictions ease it was a welcome return to this annual gathering of all things plastic and fabric and Saturday's weather was bright, clear and cool; almost perfect for the mass migration of 'lightweights'. Samuel Cody and Santos Dumont would be amazed to see how apparently simple it is to achieve safe and controlled heavier than air flight with such simple materials. Arrivals started early with owners and pilots keen to visit the various trade stands or meet up with friends and colleagues. Enthusiasts swelled the numbers with around four hundred flexwings and ultralights lining up on the grass parking areas. Another busy sector is that of the autogyro; now looking close to the dream of a flying car these motor-tricycle with wings seem a popular answer to instant mobility in three dimensions. An almost unique feature of this event is just how close visitors can get to the single grass runway with a safely marshalled crossing point at the landing threshold. A vintage/classic car gathering expected to swell the numbers on the bank holiday Monday. Noticeable was the installation of extra fabric hangarage on site since last year suggesting this sector of the industry is far healthier than their heavyweight commercial counterparts.