Opening the 2012 season at the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre was this new event, especially created to allow photographers to take relatively unhindered images of NX611. Added to the day were the talents of Second World War re-enactors and some typical wartime airfield vehicles.
Despite a morning of really poor wet weather, proceedings kicked off around noon with the opportunity to photograph NX611’s cockpit via a gantry, and the chance to walk around the exterior of the aircraft to take those close up detailed pictures that aren’t always possible.
With the weather steadily improving, the Lancaster was re-located to a second position closer to the restored control tower. With sunshine now breaking through onto the freshly washed paint work Just Jane looked her best. From this position photographers were able to photograph the aircraft with the control tower and vehicles as a backdrop, or move around for some pleasing angles free of bystanders. Gantries were added to allow for panoramic photography, and with the sun still shining NX611 really looked great!
At 16:00 NX611 was once again on the move, this time down to the concrete area adjacent to the grass strip. A fuel bowser, unique crew bus and 5000lb bomb with tractor were parked alongside, and the re-enactors set to work to recreate a typical wartime ‘bombing up’ scenario. Once again a gantry was added to allow for some really unique images.
Around 18:00 the light was failing and NX611 was prepared to taxy from this area back to a position closer to the NAAFI building. With a minimal amount of people around, the photographers were able to choose their favoured positions, and indeed freely move around to photograph NX611 from multiple angles – try doing this during the November night run with over 2000 people around; it is simply impossible!
Once the four Merlin engines had shut down the re-enactors were once again on hand to pose in flight gear. The control tower was also lit internally to allow for some very atmospheric photographs.
All things considered this was a great day (well, I am slightly biased here) and having seen how the day worked in practice there’s certainly scope for some extra photo opportunities and some minor alterations to the workings of the day should the event be repeated in 2013.