- Duration: 116 mins
- Region: 0 (any)
- Format: High Definition MP4
The Black Arrows of No. 111 Squadron were the RAF's premier formation aerobatics display team between 1956 and 1960, flying Hawker Hunter aircraft.
Universally heralded as the team to watch, and arguably the best team the world has ever seen, the Black Arrows displayed all over the UK and Europe while at the same time maintaining their role as an active front line Fighter Command squadron.
Hear the fascinating story of the Black Arrows in the team's own words, with exclusive interviews with the founding leader of the team, Air Commodore Roger Topp, his successor, Air Vice Marshal Peter Latham and twelve other surviving members, including Air Chief Marshal Sir Patrick Hine. These extraordinarily modest men talk about why the Hunter was the perfect machine for formation aerobatics, how the team came together almost accidentally, how they got their name and colour scheme, what it took to be a formation aerobatics pilot and what they (allegedly) got up to while off duty! A vital part of the team, the ground crew, also share their recollections of those exciting golden years of aviation.
The result of two years research, the film includes archive footage and photographs of displays, training and life on the squadron, a significant amount of which is previously unseen and is from the pilot's and ground crew's private collections. Also included is footage of the famous 22 aircraft loop at Farnborough in 1958, a world record unbeaten to this day. Roger Topp led that formation in Hawker Hunter XG194, recently discovered abandoned and restored to display status by a dedicated team from Wattisham Air Museum.
This is the real history of the Black Arrows, told in their words and their words alone - a unique collection of stories from a unique group of pilots who set the ground rules for formation aerobatics - rules that are still observed today.
"This is an absolute must for any aviation enthusiast" FlyPast Sept 2019
"Undoubtedly the best aviation DVD of the year." Jets Magazine.
"Fascinating and well supported by the accompanying footage." Aviation News
"A must-see for aviation and fast jet enthusiasts and a stunning piece of film work. If you are interested in aviation history, or the RAF, check this one out." Squidoo
IMPORTANT NOTE: This downloadable version of the film contains a considerable amount of restored footage and photographs. However, it should be noted that some original material (which is over 60 years old) was in very poor condition, or was shot by the pilots themselves on inexpensive cameras, and as such the image quality will be variable. The original interviews were filmed in 2010/11 in both standard definition or 720p quality. These have been enhanced to display nicely on a modern high definition television or computer screen, but any flawas in the original footage may be more noticeable.
Your purchase entitles you to download the film up to three times for your personal use. Please do not share copies of this film or upload any of it to the internet. The film is not licenced for public screenings. If you wish to show the film in whole or in part at your club or in any other public setting, please contact ian@vit-media. A screening licence is just £50 per showing.
- Also available as a standard definition DVD version - £15 plus p&p (WHILE STOCKS LAST)
- Available soon in full high definition on a 16GB USB drive - £19.99 plus p&p