New display for 2009 set to get hearts racing at Cosford Air Show

Posted: 27/05/2009

Every year thousands of people listen to two men telling them about the history and capabilities of aircraft flying at the Cosford Air Show.


But 2009 will see the launch of a new project by commentator Sean Maffett and producer Jonathan Ruffle – as they strive to explain why even the oldest hands in the business get emotional about aviation.


About 50,000 people of all ages gather together at the Shropshire RAF base and watch as dozens of aircraft, old and new, take to the skies for a fantastic and much-loved display.


But why is the event so popular? Why do people spend hours gazing up at the planes and helicopters doing what they do? Why do they return year on year?


It is a question Sean and Jonathan believe they have answered – and being behind the commentary for the five-hour flying display at the Cosford Air Show they know what they are talking about.


Their new project ‘Into the Wild Blue Yonder’ will see voices of dozens of people of all ages being projected across the air base on June 14 so the thousands of visitors can hear what it is that makes people "soppy" at the sight of aircraft.


They asked pilots to put together displays which would show how "electrified" flying made them feel.


And with interviews from veterans, stewardesses, youngsters perusing the RAF Museum Cosford, fitters and even Air Marshals to back the result of their request their efforts have resulted in something more spectacular than they could have hoped.


A new display for 2009 with history, flying, music, poetry and drama all rolled into one.


Jonathan said: "We had been looking at ways in which we do commentary about an aircraft. We were talking about the way that we have a very strong emotional response to aircraft.


"We get involved in flying because we love flying, we love the flying noises aircraft make. When the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Lancaster bomber flies over I don’t see the metal fuselage and the underside of wings, I see all the old boys I have chatted to over the years who lost all their friends flying in it.


"This was our starting point and we began talking about what we could do and then we thought of talking to people, people in the queue at Gatwick, children going around the RAF Museum Cosford and others.


"We thought we could get them talking about what they love about aircraft and during the show, over the PA, backed with appropriate music, we would play a recording of why their heart leaps when they see a plane.


"We are trying to interest a very broad audience but I would be stupid to ignore that many families are at the show because of the husband or father’s interest in aircraft.


"We want to tell people what it is, what men get soppy about when it comes to aircraft, and that is what Into the Wild Blue Yonder is.

"It is why flying is great in emotional terms and why we, as men, love it so much."

Tickets for the show are available at local branch offices of the Shropshire Star, the Royal Air Force Museum at Cosford, branches of the Mid Counties Co-Operative Society, Tourist Information Centres in Birmingham (Rotunda), Stafford (Gatehouse Theatre) and Stoke (Victoria Hall), the special air show ticket line on 0871 230 1083, and an internet booking service at (Special Events; Air Shows; RAF Cosford).
Full information on the show can be seen on the air show web site – or is available on the show information line at 0844 561 1897.

cosford air show shropshire wild blue
Sean Maffett(LEFT) and Jonathan Ruffle get ready for the Cosford Air Show.


wild blue at the cosford air show in shropshire
The P-51 Mustang will be one of the aeroplanes involved in 'Into the Wild Blue Yonder'.