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Guernsey Air Display

Guernsey Air Display

10th September 2020

Be transported back in time as the skies above St Peter Port fill with bygone aircraft reminiscent of the war years and then watch some of the amazing air acrobatics from display teams such as The Red Arrows during The Guernsey Air Display. Taking place each September, this annual event usually includes vintage and RAF aircraft and is really spectacular to watch. As well as the mid morning air display, there is also the chance to meet some of the pilots, ask questions and view some of the planes taking part in the display beforehand.

Display programme

Past highlights have included The Battle of Britain Memorial flight with Lancaster, Spitfire and Hurricane aircraft as well as the RAF Tucano, Blades and Red Arrows display teams.

Viewing the Air Show

The display takes place over Guernsey’s east coast. Spectators will get an excellent view from St Peter Port Harbour and White Rock Pier is also a recommended viewing point along with the lighthouse at the Castle Breakwater and the East Breakwater, all in St Peter Port. However right from the north of the island, along the east coast and down to the cliffs in the south you will have the ability to see what’s going on.

History of aviation in Guernsey

Guernsey is affiliated with No. 201 Squadron, one of the oldest RAF Squadrons, carrying the nickname ‘Guernsey’s Own’. Flying early Avro 504’s and aircraft such as the Sopwith Camel, the squadron started life as No. 1 Sqn Royal Navy Air Service (RNAS) in Gosport in 1914, moving to Dunkirk at the outbreak of World War I and onto Bray Dunes airfield in France by 1917. As the First World War ended the Squadron became known as 201 Flying Boat Squadron and were deployed to Invergordon on Search and Rescue Missions.

At the outbreak of World War II, 201 Squadron completed reconnaissance missions in search of German Submarines over enemy waters, taking delivery of new Short Sunderland Aircraft. By 1941 they had moved to Lough Erne in Northern Ireland and then onto Hamburg to take part in operation Plainfare by 1948, dropping essential supplies to West Berlin.

After the Second World War, 201 Squadron moved to its current location at RAF Kinloss in Scotland where they policed politically troubled areas. Avro Shackleton’s were formally used and then Nimrod Aircraft as the era of the jet powered maritime aircraft dawned. Taking part in maritime surveillance in the Falklands and Iraq and Afganistan, the Squadron were eventually disbanded on 9th May 2011.

On presentation of the Standard from HRH Duke of Edinburgh in 2010 however, the decision was made to ‘lodge’ it in Government House, Guernsey, rather than RAF College Cranwell as is customary. This means if the Squadron were to be rekindled then the Commanding Officer would make a formal request to Guernsey’s Lieutenant Governor. As part of their 80th anniversary celebrations, the disbanded Squadron were granted the ancient military honour of the ‘The Privilege of Guernsey.’

Visit Guernsey and watch the Air Display

The Air Display is a free event and takes place each September. Take a look at our accommodation and travel options which can be booked online. For help and advice use our web chat facility or call our friendly team on 01621 734555.