View Full Version : C-47's to Normandy

20th May 2019, 15:08
An interesting article with some good photography concerning seven of the Dakotas which will return to re-enact the 75th anniversary of the Normandy invasion. My childhood home was located on the mountain visible in the background of the Hartford skyline. One of my schoolmate's father was President of Pratt and Whitney! D-Day Anniversary (https://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-news-dday-75th-anniversary-squadron-trip-oxford-20190518-k535nyev55edna3rjgjhrzt6wy-story.html)

- Ed

https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/800x533/c_47_over_east_hartford_21cbf126a65447905240ef309a5910baa858 2c7b.jpg

20th May 2019, 16:25
Hoping to see the fleet and their escorts cross the coast at Eastbourne when they fly the re-enactment on 5th June. I believe at least one Mustang is also on its way across by air.

21st May 2019, 11:56
Think they'll probably arrive Thursday for display Friday to Sunday. Www.tsia.scot/tickets

Sorry, not Sunday. A few arrived today. Lovely sound.

21st May 2019, 12:11
The progress of the CAF C-47 "That's All Brother" can be tracked at https://share.garmin.com/TABtoNormandy

21st May 2019, 14:09
From what I've read elsewhere the formation is due to leave Duxford at 1405 on 5th.of June and pass Colchester at 1421 before heading for Southend.Times obviously TBC.

22nd May 2019, 07:55
I'm with Treadigraph, Premier Inn booked at Eastbourne, Dakota's and the seaside, just good providing the weather holds.

24th May 2019, 08:58
As the formation will be passing through a lot of controlled airspace at fairly low level and in probably quite a long 'line astern', if you found yourself in the wrong spot they will be just distant dots. I am wondering if there will be a better indication of the exact course or way points they will be following other than the attached broad brush.
https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/643x960/52898459_10213244544974389_6634184735134318592_n_3909e614192 34a60bffa68bd1e46e095afadfdcb.jpg

India Four Two
1st Jun 2019, 07:27
A marvellous shot from the D-Day Squadron's FaceBook page:

https://cimg3.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/960x640/d_day_c47_beachy_head_acf7c762278ab897638554e5df743199d83c0a 2b.jpg
The picture is captioned as Beachy Head, but these cliffs are at Seaford, with the Cuckmere River in the background.

Many more great pictures on the FB page, documenting the aircraft and their transit across the pond:

1st Jun 2019, 21:16
Reports were that they overflew Newhaven, Seaford, Seven Sisters and Beachy Head for the photoshoot/rehearsal flight today (1/6)
Don't think they got as far as Dover
Hoping that a more precise flight track/way point timings might be available.

With the Bomber Command Memorial also at Beachy Head, that may be a good viewing spot.

Did cheekily request they overfly our village with its hill where William raised his standard, as a link to the other Norman(dy) Invasion but no response....

1st Jun 2019, 23:20
I see the formation was allowed to overfly Washington on the way over.

I think it's a shame that on the day they will be dog-legging around London. It would have been stirring stuff to have gone right overhead the centre, as I believe many formations did on the day.

See you all at Duxford :)

2nd Jun 2019, 18:35
Bit of a general question concerning this. Are there any websites detailing what flight commemorations there are for the anniversary? Mrs yt and me are keen to see some of the airborne celebrations but don't want to get caught up in horrific traffic in and around Portsmouth and Southsea etc. We're sort of looking to to drive somewhere, park up the car and stand on a beach of some sort and watch any sort of overhead display or re-enactment. Sorry to be so woolly.

(Dad went up the beaches around Arromanche, and yesterday we went to Lepe Beach in Hampshire and had a very good guided tour around the local beaches where some of the D-Day embarcations took place and where six of the original caissons for the Mulberry harbour were built. Dad was at the other end bolting them together - though he did have a hand from a few others!!).

2nd Jun 2019, 21:43
I think Southend might be a better "beach" location than the cliffs near Eastbourne.

I am just guessing from the map above, but my hunch is they have used town names the public will recognise, and for routing from Duxford "Colchester" will be the VOR at Clacton (actually some way inland), "Southend" is the NDB on the airport there, "Maidstone" will be the VOR at Detling, and "Eastbourne" will be the VOR at Seaford. The great photo just above seems to bear this out - they have come directly above the clifftop Seaford one, which is just out of shot to the left.

I did go to Gosport beach for the 50th in 1994 (seems like yesterday), there was a significant ship display in Spithead, but I remember more a somewhat off-programme display of a formation of maybe 20 glider tugs, pulling about 20 gliders, nothing historic but likely from Lasham or somewhere, coming overhead about an hour before the official events started. Anyone here involved ? You got quite a cheer from the beach.

2nd Jun 2019, 22:15
The NATS AIC document shows the corridor from Duxford turning SE over Sudbury, SSW over Colchester and west of CLN, overhead Southend, slightly east of Rochester, over DET and Maidstone, the turn S over Eastbourne, well to the east of the Seaford VOR. Hopefully as good a place as any to see the formation...

El Bunto
3rd Jun 2019, 05:22
[QUOTE=cavuman1;10475665]An interesting article with some good photography concerning seven of the Dakotas which will return to re-enact the 75th anniversary of the Normandy invasion.[/url]

Marvellous irony:

"Unfortunately, our website is currently unavailable in most European countries."

Anyway, shooting props at 1/400th like that photo won't ever qualify for 'good photography'

El Bunto
3rd Jun 2019, 05:23
[QUOTE=cavuman1;10475665]An interesting article with some good photography concerning seven of the Dakotas which will return to re-enact the 75th anniversary of the Normandy invasion.

Marvellous irony:

"Unfortunately, our website is currently unavailable in most European countries."

Anyway, shooting props at 1/400th like that photo won't ever qualify for 'good photography'

India Four Two
3rd Jun 2019, 06:31
Iím not sure if the AIC has been posted before, so here it is;


https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/718x1181/276f29e9_9ad0_40fd_9de7_e949cc8dc1f8_d9f4ebcd481e0541c510ccf 599d79e2e25caab6e.jpeg

3rd Jun 2019, 09:36
Thanks I42. Here's the whole thing



It seems the second set of timings is not a second wave, but a precaution against passing poor weather affecting the main, planned wave.

4th Jun 2019, 14:15
Seems to have been a rainy day today, Tuesday, hope it hasn't spoilt things too much. Met looks better for tomorrow, Wednesday

5th Jun 2019, 07:23
I am confused as to what time they will be over Beachy Head. Are we talking GMT or BST ?

5th Jun 2019, 07:46
I am confused as to what time they will be over Beachy Head. Are we talking GMT or BST ?

As the graphic in I42's post #16 clearly shows, timings are UTC.

5th Jun 2019, 09:49

5th Jun 2019, 09:56
Thanks for the clarification, I had somehow missed that. And yes I am familiar with UTC/GMT/Z times.

5th Jun 2019, 10:06

Don't tell a Frenchman that. :O

5th Jun 2019, 10:31
Don't tell a Frenchman that. :O

"There'll always be a GMT...." ;)

5th Jun 2019, 21:17
What happened? Wife, dogs and I went to Beachy Head thinking that would be a super spot, as did several thousands of others.
Got there about 12:30 and found the last parking space at the Beachy Head pub.
Idea was to have a good lunch at a dog friendly pub, and still have plenty of time to watch the flypast

All i can say is that if the pub management had been in charge of D Day, the troops would still be waiting to board!
Abysmal handling, 4 sets of pumps at the bar, but 3 allocated to those with Reserved tables and just one chap handling all food and drink requests, including MAKING all hot drinks- result? 45 minute wait just to get served. No food orders taken unless you had a table number and no food served at the front beer garden.
In addition, as it was the 75th anniversary there was a preponderance of elderly people, some with wheelchairs but simply unable to stand for any length of time....
I could rant for much longer but then the flypast time came and went, yes, reserve flight plan showed them coming an hour later... Eventually, with a wife suffering from frost bite and two very bored dogs the fly past happened at just on 5 o'clock. Two vics managed to pass, then isolated ones or twos, no cohesive formation.

A very weary and cold crowd gave frantic waves, partly to restore circulation to numbed arms and several of the aircraft tried to cheer with landing lights flickering or blazing, one or two waggled their wings. I felt sorry for those embarking on the parachute drops, by now the visibility and weather were poor, and the stiff breeze could mean being blown back towards the Channel.

I do hope my experience was a minority and the abysmal handling of customers by Vintage inns managers didn't help.

Rumours were that the delay was due to "French dignitaries (Macron mentioned) being late arriving... where? in Portsmouth or Normandy?

So disappointing for the Daks Over Normandy people who spent so long and worked so hard to arrange a once in a lifetime event (unless over 75).

Hope others have a more positive view.

6th Jun 2019, 02:18
The spectacle at Duxford was great, especially the mass departure when DC-3 after DC-3 rolled past us. It was pleasant that the flight line was opened up late morning for a close up (as in "fingers on") inspection of the aircraft, including being able to see just what was different in build standard between a DC-3 an a Lissunov Li-2. And it wasn't just the aircraft, the paratroopers with what appeared to be D-Day kit (including leaves on the helmet and blackened faces) got good rounds of applause as they went out. Almost all were US military who had come over specially for it.

Announcer said I think 23 aircraft departed, and 2 DC-3 left AOG at the end of the day, which must have been a big disappointment to their individual crews. Told that the Dakota Norway DC-3 had an engine failure the previous day. Weather held all day, just. (sudden torrential downpour on the M11 passing Stansted when returning; hope the aircraft didn't run into it).

The delay was indeed disappointing. NOTAM (above) was depart at 1340 local, with 1510 as a reserve. The Duxford announcer, who for long periods seemed to be struggling with no information, said the knockback to the reserve time was due to a "VVIP requirement in France". But then a further hour delay. First engine start was 1600, and most away by 1620, so 2.5 hours late. I think the original intention was for the 8 with jumpers to be away first, the others following later, but in the event all left as a single stream.

The other disappointment is there seems to be absolutely nothing about the whole operation in the media, who have concentrated entirely on pictures of the top politicians whose photos can be seen in the news any other day of the year. A BBC News badged helicopter was there but I can't find any footage on the BBC. A second chopper was apparently from The Sun, and at least they seem to have put their stuff on YouTube here PDQ.


6th Jun 2019, 17:02

"The other disappointment is there seems to be absolutely nothing about the whole operation in the media..."


I spent the day in front of the TV and it was all over all major channels both live and constant repeats.

6th Jun 2019, 17:34
I was well pleased with access to some aircraft at Duxford on the Tuesday, pity the drops did not happen but at least that meant more time on the ground, also the crews chatting about their own aircraft history
As to TV I am able to see BBC east and they did a bit that did not appear on the National News from the airfield and also inside the American Museum. The reporter did seem knowledgeable
Well done to all those involved

6th Jun 2019, 18:25
I spent the day in front of the TV and it was all over all major channels both live and constant repeats.
About Duxford and the DC-3s, or more generally ? All I saw repeatedly was from Portsmouth.

7th Jun 2019, 13:01
Regarding the "Meridian", I have a gentle chuckle every time we drive to friends an hour east of here and paass through a village where there is a very prominent and not inelegant marking of the Meridian de Greenwich

19th Jun 2019, 14:39
An interesting video about restoring C47s and DC3s - a few errors but otherwise worth watching:


Apologies if it's already been posted.

20th Jun 2019, 08:24
Were any of the DC-3s invited to the Paris Air Show ?

20th Jun 2019, 08:28
I believe a couple are at Le Bourget...

24th Jun 2019, 00:24
Just spotted the thread, so sorry if it's a bit late. They were at Old Warden on the weekend, up close and personal, open for the public to look them over and inside. Here's a few of my shots: