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Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Post information relating to the Royal International Air Tattoo here.

Re: Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Postby turmo » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:07 am

In addition to the FRIAT grandstand there were many RIAT-related staff in the Village grandstand on departures day, I think they probably had a better view of many of the rotations other than the most powerful fighters. Certainly Pinky went ambling well down the runway before rotating!

On the arrivals Wednesday I was down in P&V West but it was ruined by the ladders right along the fence-line. I don't understand why they aren't corralled like at the East location. I wasn't even photographing, just trying to watch. Eventually a couple of fed-up photographers near me struck a deal with a caterer to use the bed of their pickup as a platform to see over the Ladder Lot.
Location: East Coast NI

Re: Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Postby ChrisJ » Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:00 pm

Hi to All . I have waited a little while since RIAT to let 'things cool down' . Also I have read the posts up until now on this subject . Now may I give my view/findings ? This year I attended the Monday departures for the first time . Following enquiries I was told that the western end was better because the people were more considerate and generally there were fewer there . Also , for me it was better as I drove from the West Country . I bought my ticket in advance . This saves disappointment ! I arrived just after 0630 as I suspected there might be a number waiting and this experience was new to me . There were a couple of rows of cars and a long queue from the enclosure entrance . I shortly joined this queue as is the British way ! The enclosure opened on time at 0730 and in we went . The 'Early Birds' rushed to the fence and many ( not all) set up camp and ladders . I also ask the question 'Why ladders' when at the front ? Some pitched small tent like items and wind breaks to mark their pitch . Not knowing just how things would pan out as the departures start I decided to stay back from the fence and so was about twenty feet or so back . This would give me a bit of freedom of movement when taking photos . Also I had one of those plastic folding kitchen steps which give about eighteen inches of height . To my front it was clear of people up to the fence liners . Then just prior to the departures a pair set up camp in front of me totally oblivious to all around them . They had large ladders and large tripods with a number of cameras lined up . So as the enclosure had now filled up I was more or less stuck ! Never the less I did manage to get some shots without one of the late comer's large black hat in the frame ! They did not need such large ladders ( about five steps ) , just a foot or two increase in height would of been enough . I have viewed photos on several sites and worked out who the offenders probably are ! I agree with those saying that ladders should be kept away from the fence line as some who attend just wish to watch unobstructed . I did not see anyone politely letting someone in front of them , rather if a gap appeared then it was a rush to get a shot . Infact when a couple left early the neighbours expanded their plot to prevent anyone else getting there !! Despite this I did not see any 'heated situations' and things went well . So to reply to the initial post . The only way is to get your ticket in advance and arrive early . This year the P & V west sold out early and I can see that in future tickets would only be available on line in advance . This is not much help if you have an elderly passenger - I am 70 and was on the road by 0330 for that trip ! As for RIAT making a loss !! Very hard to take , given the popularity ! Well that's It for another year . I suspect the same old subjects will pop up next year as they seem to each RIAT . Lets just enjoy what we have because it would not take much for the 'Powers That Be' to stop these shows . There are now only a handful each year as to the number say , twenty years back . Bye All . Chrisj

Re: Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Postby ChrisCwmbran » Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:25 pm

This is kind of an apology to people - though what I said was directly based on what I was told by an employee of RIAT on the day.

Running the park and views for arrivals and departures does NOT make a loss for RIAT. Each day does make a net contribution to FRIAT funds.

I wrote to FRIAT and they were able to confirm the above to me.

Accordingly all I can do is suggest that anyone who doesn't pay to go on base for any of the days of event could always make a voluntary donation to the cause in return for the enjoyment provided.

ChrisJ - For the record I didn't say RIAT made a loss overall at all. I was told by a member of staff that each day they did the park and view, the cost of doing it outweighed the money taken - something that I hope this post has made clear.

Re: Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Postby roughcutter » Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:17 am

sneezy24 wrote:P&V West was open all day (certainly from 8:5 onward), I was there all day.

I didn't even bother going "inside", but opted to stay with my car on the concrete, parking next to the metal fence and set up my steps there. My shots were just as good as if they had been taken from inside the viewing area, in fact better because the take off's were much easier to pan. Definitely the way for me from now on. :thumb:
User avatar
Location: Cheshire

Re: Departures Day: A Winge and a Request

Postby Bob DeBilda » Sun Jan 14, 2018 5:13 pm

ChrisCwmbran wrote:Hey all

Took my mother who is her 70s to departures day. We headed initially to Park & View West but found it to be closed. Accordingly we headed for Park & View East.

Once we got into the site we however found that it was impossible to get anywhere near the fence to take pictures.

Not everyone is to blame but there were countless people there who had established themselves "base camps" at the fence line using deck chairs, cool boxes and rucksacks etc. On the face of it this might seem fine however it results in for example two people occupying 8 feet of fence line - a space which is very much at a premium.

Personally I think it would be sensible if there were rules on site that the 20 feet nearest the fence should be zone where people cannot establish such bases. Then more people might actually be able to get some photos - I got 3 photos before I have up because of peoples attitudes.

Talking to a senior member of RIAT staff, I was told I was far from the first person to be unhappy about this, and he urged anyone with similar sentiments to write to the charity to see if improvements can be made next year.

Additionally however he told me that the arrival and departure days make a loss for the charity. He said the money raised from admission doesn't anywhere near cover the cost of allowing people on site on these days and that they only do it because of concerns over the safety of people attempting to watch said arrivals and departures from roadside/off-base locations. Accordingly those of us who look at RIAT attendance as a way of supporting a very importance charity, but who also attend the arrival and departure days might wish to add some money in the form of a donation (remembering to take advantage of Gift Aid) in order to offset this loss and make sure the charity and its beneficiaries really benefit as we intend.

Thanks for reading this,


I know charities can reclaim tax via Gift Aid but can individuals claim tax relief on FRIAT membership fees??? Now there's a thought!!!
Bob DeBilda


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