This coming Friday (10th July), at just before lunchtime, look to the skies, as a military flypast will take place over central London.
The event will see a flypast of four Spitfires and two Hurricanes from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight plus four Typhoon jets pass over Buckingham Palace, so the usual route would be to come in from the East, over Shoreditch, the City, then along The Mall, before heading away, probably to the north-west.
The flypast is to mark the Battle of Britain 75th anniversary.
The date is significant as 10 July 1940 is widely acknowledged as the start of the Battle of Britain, with a series of Luftwaffe attacks on shipping convoys off England’s southeast coast.
On that day, the RAF shot down 14 enemy aircraft and severely damaged 23 more, according to the then Air Ministry. Some 200 patrols were flown by RAF aircraft on 10 Jul 1940, involving 641 aircraft.
RAF Typhoon fighter jet in Battle of Britain era paint scheme above RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire, with a Hurricane from the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
As a part of the flypast, but on the ground, a special Changing the Guard will take place at Buckingham Palace.
The enhanced Guard Change will be performed by the RAF Queen’s Colour Squadron and will be witnessed by guests with links to the Battle of Britain, including six remaining RAF Battle of Britain pilots.
It will also involve eight Standards – military flags carried on poles – of Battle of Britain squadrons still serving in the RAF today, as well as the RAF Central Band and RAF Regiment Band.
This will be followed by a Feu de Joie (‘Fire of Joy’ – a celebratory cascade of rifle fire) and Three Cheers for The Queen.
The Changing the Guard takes place at 11:30am and finishes at Noon. I would expect that the flypast would take place at noon, as they usually come at the end of ceremonial events.
So, Friday 10th July at Noon, look to the skies.
Update: The BBMF has just published its flying programme which suggests the flypast will take place at 11:45am.
Update 2: OK, timings getting confused, as RAF Northolt hope for the flypast to reach them around 12:10pm, which puts the flypast over Buckingham Palace at noon.
Would be useful if the organisers would just confirm the time!
So, on Friday, around lunchtime, look to the skies!