A bumper four-days of fun, flying and fantastic displays came to an end on Sunday with the Typhoon officially closing BCP Council’s 2022 Bournemouth Air Festival.
People from all over the country and beyond visited Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole over the last four days to take part in the festival, enjoying all the aviation packed entertainment on offer as well as all the land-based activities that took place in the RAF, Navy and Army villages on the ground.
Regarded as one of the best air shows in the UK due to its unique position on the south coast of England offering both land and sea viewing opportunities, residents, visitors and flying enthusiasts have been enthralled by flying displays, including the mighty Typhoon and its roarsome noise, breath taking stunts from the Jet Pitts Muscle Bi Plane, wing walkers, parachutists, the nostalgia of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and of course, the ever-popular Red Arrows.
Running for over 10 years, the air show now includes an impressive number of flying displays, armed forces entertainment, a STEM education tent (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), family entertainment, fairground rides, Pier to Pier trading, free outdoor films, live music and the ever-popular fireworks.
This year early indicators suggest a major uplift in residents and local people coming to enjoy the festival. Benefiting the local economy, on Saturday the Prom Café reported its best day of trading ever.
In a push for a more sustainable festival, residents and visitors have been encouraged to leave their cars at home wherever possible and travel by train, bus, bike, or even Beryl scooter to the festival site, to help reduce the carbon footprint. The council’s popular Park and Ride from Kings Park to Boscombe Pier removed an estimated 2000 cars from local roads and the town centre on Saturday, facilitating greater ease of travel away from the event.
Attendees were also urged to bring reusable water bottles from home and fill up at one the 150 water refill points along the seafront that have recently been installed or refreshed thanks to BCP Council’s partnership with City to Sea. Festival goers are thanked for being responsible and keeping the beaches clean, it’s noted that this year many more people have chosen to take their waste home and make use of the many bins provided along the seafront.
Jon Weaver, Air Festival Director, BCP Council commented:
“Once again, we’ve had a fantastic four days of fun and I’m incredibly proud of my team who have worked tirelessly both leading up to and over the last few weeks to ensure the success of this year’s festival. I am also very grateful to colleagues across the Council who have stepped up before and during the festival to ensure its smooth running.
“Putting together a festival of this magnitude also requires a huge amount of partnership working and my immense thanks go to everyone who been involved in this year’s festival. From the emergency services to the armed forces and RNLI, as well as hospitality partners and traders who all have given 100% to make sure we had a successful festival over the last few days.”
Councillor Beverley Dunlop, Portfolio Holder for Tourism, Culture and Vibrant Places, BCP Council commented:
“Bournemouth Air Festival is the highlight of the summer calendar and this year’s festival certainly did not disappoint! From the iconic Red Arrows to the thrilling night displays and the fabulous family atmosphere throughout, it’s been fantastic!
“This iconic air show certainly puts Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole on the map. It brings in the crowds from far and wide, supporting the economy and local jobs. It also gives us the opportunity to showcase the best our area to a wide audience.
"We’re now looking ahead to the arrival of the exciting Airship Orchestra and then our Arts by the Sea Festival, which has now extended through Christchurch. We also have the ever-popular Christmas Tree Wonderland, Poole Fireworks and the first ever Poole Christmas Maritime Lights Festival coming later this year. These events will highlight the very best our towns have to offer all our residents and visitors through all seasons.”
Provisional dates for next year’s air festival will be the 31 August to 3 September 2023.