The Calendar Gals of Compton Abbas Airfield!
- Credit: Archant
The all-female crew at Compton Abbas Airfield are well-known but now they’re turning their talents to raising money for military families in 2014
The Compton Girls are back! After the huge success of the Compton Abbas Airfield 2012 calendar, which raised £6,000 for the Air Ambulance, the team has been busy producing another for 2014. This time, in support of the Waterloo Military Families Fund, the team hopes to raise £10,000 to help soldiers and their families. They have already raised £3,000, so are well on the way.
The many vintage aircraft based at Compton Abbas Airfield influenced the choice of a 1940s, World War II theme.
Featuring in the calendar alongside the staff and pilots from the airfield are the planes, ranging from the iconic Tiger Moth and Chipmunk to the more unusual Taylor Monoplane.
Donating his time for free, photographer Patrick Drummond (who has recently gained his licence at the airfield), is the man behind the beautiful shots.
Compton is unusual in that it is run by an all-female team, and it has probably the highest number of female pilots and club members of any air field in the country - so there was certainly no shortage of models when it came to the calendar.
The calendar also has some famous connections as club member and Olympic multi-gold medallist Ben Ainslie is helping to promote sales. Also the airfield’s very own Tiger Moth (which features in one of the shots) is soon to appear in the Hollywood film The Monuments Men, which stars George Clooney and Matt Damon.
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You can buy the calendar online or at the airfield for £10. It makes a brilliant Christmas present. Compton Abbas also offer Flight Experience Packages, perfect if you’re looking for an uplifting gift.
Compton Abbas Airfield, Ashmore, SP5 5AP
comptonabbasairfield.co.uk Tel: 01747 811767
Twitter: @abbasair Facebook: Compton Abbas Airfield
All images are in the gallery above
The inspiration for this shot was the iconic World War Two image ‘Rosie the Riveter’. The Tiger Moth is owned by Compton and can regularly be seen doing ‘Experience Flights’ from the airfield on weekend. It was built in 1935 and having been extensively overhauled in the 80’s is one of the best examples of its type in the UK. Featured are Emma and Laura, the sisters are directors of the airfield.
Maddy and Phil are ‘dancing’ in one of the airfield’s hangars where over 50 aircraft are kept. The most unusual aircraft kept on the airfield are the ‘Boeing Stearman’ and the ‘Hornet Moth’ of which there are only 12 left in the UK. This keeps the 100,000+ visitors that come to Compton every year happy. Maddy flies with Emma and is doing a ‘Flying Companions Course’ next year so she can become more involved in flying. Phil travels down from London at weekends to camp at Compton and build up his hours in order to gain his PPL.
The ‘Ops Room’
This room is still much as it would have been back in the 30’s and 40’s with lots of original memorabilia. It is where the Tiger Moth pilots base themselves when they do experience flights in Compton’s Tiger Moth. The photo features Sophie who has worked at the airfield since 2009 and is the smiling face behind the desk. Mike is the man behind Maverick Motorcycles who do Flight & Bike Experience packages with Compton. This year he also achieved his lifelong dream of learning to fly. Moggy flies the Tiger Moth at Compton having retired from flying for Virgin last year. He was also a fighter pilot in the Falklands War.
This shot features Compton’s yellow Tiger Moth that can often be seen displaying at the airfield, and the Aeronca. The Tiger Moth is owned and displayed by ‘Mog’ a Falklands fighter pilot. Featured are airfield directors Emma and Laura. Laura runs the popular airfield restaurant and Emma runs the operations side of the business and has her Private Pilots Licence.
Landgirls with Tiger Moth
The land girl picture worked out so well that everyone thinks the yellow bi-plane is superimposed! But a combination of Patrick the photographer getting down in to the mud, the girls doing some quick posing and the tiger pilot going round in circles a few times all came together to get a shot that we were really proud of and that was worthy of the front cover. The picture features Cat and Steph. Cat, who gained her licence in 2010, is currently studying at Cardiff and is a member of the University Air Squadron. Steph gained her PPL (Private Pilot Licence)with Compton when she was just 17. She now flies a 1946 Luscombe in her spare time whilst studying for a degree in Aeronautical Engineering.