Thousands look to the skies at the Royal International Air Tattoo 2012
Thousands of aviation enthusiasts joined families braving some wet weather at the Royal International Air Tattoo 2012 at RAF Fairford.
The airfield and the skies over the surrounding area echoed with the roars of supersonic jets and other aircraft for the first day of the weekend-long event.
Stars of the show were acrobatic RAF display team the Red Arrows, which performed alongside a host of jets from air forces around the world.
And a magnificent static display saw planes like the B-2 "Stealth" bombers, cargo planes, helicopters and spy planes together with many displays, fairground rides, music stages and food and drinks stalls.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
Heavy rain before the weekend did not prevent the crowds from attending, although organisers admitted some of the scheduled displays failed to go ahead.
Still, parking and access to the site were apparently problem-free and despite some wet patches of ground and a few showers, the crowds were thoroughly entertained.
And on this jubilee year, with the British Grand Prix taking place this weekend as well as Andy Murray's appearance in the Wimbledon final, British displays from teams such as the Red Arrows seemed even more appropriate.
Saturday even saw a fly-past by a Lancaster bomber and two Spitfires - iconic heroes of British aviation from the Second World War.
Sam Williams, aged 40 from Cheltenham, had travelled to the airfield with his family to enjoy the day.
He said: "The weather's not ideal but one of the great things about being British is that it doesn't ever stop us enjoying ourselves - we expect it to rain so it doesn't matter so much when it does!
"It's been a great day - the aircraft are incredible and the displays are amazing. To be able to get so close up to these planes and helicopters is really exciting."
Richard Arquati, spokesman for the event, said: "Whilst the weather is slightly affecting our plans in terms of the flying displays it's not making a huge difference.
"This year's tattoo is a truly international event - for example we have had the South Korean display team and their show impressed everyone, even the hardened aviation enthusiasts.
"And we have 40 military air chiefs here from around the world - we invite them, they have a great time and they send their aircraft from around the world.
"They are all former pilots of course and they love the place. That's the unique thing about the Royal International Air Tattoo."