The RAF Falcons, the parachute display team of
the Royal Air Force, wowed thousands of visitors at the Royal Norfolk
Nearly 100,000 people visited the annual agricultural
show held at the Costessey showground.
During the two-day event, the Falcons made four
jumps into the main arena from a height of around 10,000 feet.
Sergeant Stu Amory is enjoying his second year
with the team.
"All the jumps were between 10,000 - 4000
feet," he said.
"I really mean it when I say the Royal Norfolk
Show was the best show this year so far.
"The atmosphere was great, the showground
is brilliant. It's just a really good atmosphere."
The RAF Falcons' displays are unique. The team's
famous non-contact canopy stack is a dramatic aerial display which
is enhanced by smoke trails from each parachutist.
The display ends with the team landing in quick
succession one behind another into the drop zone which can be as
small as 50 metres square.
The Falcons are the only display team that jump
from military aircraft using a Hercules C130K.
Stu Amory admits, it was looking touch and go for
a time as to whether the team would be jumping:
Flight Lieutenant Mike Smith and Sergeant Stu Amory make last
minute checks before their jump.
"Initially we heard the weather forecast wasn't
the best, so we weren't sure if we were going to do any of the jumps.
Fortunately the weather did clear up enough for us to do it,"
The RAF Falcons have five jump routines to choose
from, depending on the weather conditions.
The crowds at the Royal Norfolk Show were lucky
enough to enjoy a spectacular high-dive display on both days.
After leaving the tailgate of the Hercules C130,
the parachutists start to freefall towards the ground at speeds
of 120mph, before deploying their parachutes at an agreed height.
For audiences at the Norfolk Showground, Sergeant
Amory said it was the last jump of the show that was his favourite.
"The wind at the airfield
was so windy, we thought we were going to miss closing the show…
but when we left the aircraft for the final drop the feeling was
Sergeant Stu Amory (left) and Sergeant Steve Davies sign autographs
for fans of the Falcons.
"Being from Scotland, the pipers from RAF
Halation Pipes & Drums playing on the landing zone really put me
in my element," he added.
Stu Amory admits, being part of the RAF Falcons
is much more than just a job:
"Parachuting is my job, but it's a hobby too
and most people who have a hobby don't get thousands of people cheering
"The audience support for us was just amazing.
You get the applause and it feels brilliant- you just want to go
again and again, which we do."
Watch the descent
at Royal Norfolk Show (dial-up 56k)
Watch the descent
at Royal Norfolk Show (Broadband)
Video footage courtesy of BBC East's Martin Giles
and the RAF Falcons. To view video content you will require Realplayer.
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Falcons' wallpaper »
Royal Norfolk Show photos day 1
Norfolk Show photos day 2 »