August bank holiday Monday saw the third, and largest to date, Props and Pistons event take place at the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre. Held in aid of Leukemia & Lymphoma Research, the event raised an outstanding £2345.00 on the day and attendance was very high, with around 3500 visitors and exhibitors enjoying the warm and dry weather.
Showcased under glorious blue skies were around 180 exotic cars with a combined value estimated at £14.4 million. Vehicle manufacturers such as Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, BMW, Ferrari, Ford, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Landrover, Lotus, Maserati, Mercedes, MG and Porsche were represented. Personal pick of the vehicles on display must be the early 1960s Ferrari 250 GT Lusso, valued at £2.5 million!
Aircraft wise, Lancaster NX611 Just Jane performed three taxy runs and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s Lancaster PA474 performed a display routine ending with a very photographer friendly topside view on departure. A Spitfire and Hurricane from the BBMF also displayed. Resident combat veteran Dakota Drag ‘em oot was on static display and lengthy queues formed for a look inside Just Jane’s cockpit (via a gantry) between her taxy runs. Hardwick Warbirds brought their Harvard and beautifully restored P-51 Mustang pair, Marinell and ‘Janie’. The Mustangs always perform a powerful display at East Kirkby, and drew much praise from the audience with their low and fast roaring passes.
Marking a first appearance by the type at East Kirkby, and indeed the first type display in Lincolnshire for quite some time, the Royal Netherlands Air Force Historical Flight Foundation (Stichting Koninklijke Luchtmacht Historische Vlucht) 1944 vintage B-25J Mitchell PH-XXV performed a stunning display, with low passes and fighter like manoeuvres. Christened ‘Sarinah’, the twin engined medium bomber brought the “wow” factor to the aviation side of Props and Pistons and left the audience spellbound by its incredibly agile display – a massive “well done” to all concerned for booking such a memorable display aircraft!
The capable North American B-25 Mitchell served with the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, but also flew widely in Allied service on almost every combat front. Remembered for famously taking off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet in the western Pacific, a number of aircraft attacked Tokyo in response to the December 1941 Japanese attack on the Hawaiian Islands and the American military bases at Pearl Harbor. Suitably for a Dutch based aircraft, ‘Sarinah’ represents N5-149, an aircraft flown from Australia by the Netherlands East Indies Air Force.
It is hoped that at next year’s Props and Pistons more visitor interaction with some of the vehicles will be possible, with activities such as drift driving taking place. Although this was only the third Props and Pistons, the event has quickly grown in size and stature and is now the largest event of its type in the area. For details of the 2014 event please follow @propsandpistons on Twitter via this link.
To play the car albums below please move your cursor over the bottom of each slideshow for the control panels.
Props and Pistons - The Aircraft
Props and Pistons - The Cars, album #1
Props and Pistons - The Cars, album #2
Adding to the atmosphere of the day was the very talented 1940s singer Miss Sarah-Jane, performing her most enjoyable routine for the first time at the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre.