Sally B to make first Clacton appearance

The Sally B, which will appear for the first time at this year's Clacton Air Show

The Sally B, which will appear for the first time at this year's Clacton Air Show - Credit: Archant

The organisers of Clacton Airshow have secured a major coup by lining-up the first ever appearance of the Sally B over the town’s skies.

The Sally B is the UK’s last remaining airworthy B-17 Flying Fortress aircraft, the only other one in Europe being based in France.

Built in 1945, she is maintained and flown as a memorial to the 79,000 allied airmen who lost their lives during the Second World War.

The aircraft is based at the Imperial War Museum in Duxford and makes frequent airshow appearances across the continent.

The aircraft represents a significant chapter in Britain’s history when formations of B-17 Fortresses of the US Eighth Army Air Force flew daylight missions out of British bases.

Delivered to the US in 1945, the Sally B was too late for active service in the Second World War and undertook various research roles before being bought and moved to France in 1954.

She was then moved to England in 1975 to be restored to her wartime condition.

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The Clacton Airshow, which is organised by Tendring District Council (TDC), takes place on August 27-28.

The airshow brings in £5million more than would be generated in the two days without the event in the district and is a key event in Tendring’s tourism calender.

Over the course of the two days last year, 200,000 people attended the event.

The Sally B will be appearing on the second day (August 28) and joins the world famous Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, the Red Arrows, who will be flying high on both days.

Nigel Brown, TDC’s communications manager, said that the line-up is really starting to take shape.

“It is a major coup for us to be able to sign up the Sally B and her graceful sight and thundering sound will certainly have a major impact on the event,” he said.

The thrills will continue into the Bank Holiday weekend with a Food and Drink Festival for the first time on August 29-30.

Anyone wanting information about sponsorship opportunities, hospitality, or trade space at this year’s Clacton Airshow should contact 01255 686683 or 01255 686654.