There were two significant ‘gatherings’ at Henstridge Airfield, Somerset at the end of April. The first, on 20 April, saw the six Tiger Moths restored by Kevin Crumplin between 2006 and 2018 brought together for a photo session. Three of these DH82AS (BB803/G-ADWJ, NM138/G-ANEW and T8191/G-BWMK) are operated by Tiger Moth Training (TMT), a company set up by Kevin, Clive Davidson and Annabelle Burroughes at Henstridge in 2013. The fourth aircraft, N9328/G-ALWS was sold in November 2014 to Jim Norris who keeps it with TMT. The first Tiger Moth restoration G-AMIV/ R5246, which Kevin acquired in mid-2006 and completed in 2010, was sold to the Air Fighter Academy (Hangar 10) two years later, while N9503/G-ANFP, finished in May 2016, was sold abroad to Richard Santus at Podhorany Airfield, Czech Republic. Richard set up TMT Czech along similar lines to the UK company and went on to purchase Tiger Moth G-AMIV/R5246 from Germany in 2018. Both aircraft came back to the UK for their annual service and NARC renewal at Henstridge.
With Tiger Moth N6466/G-ANKZ from Compton Abbas leading, the six ‘Crumplin’ Tigers were set to follow the camera ship into the air. Five made it but unfortunately R5246 didn’t develop enough power and struggled over the airfield boundary to force-land in an adjacent field. So, the formation led by silver ‘BRNC’ Tiger Moth T8191 had a ‘missing man’. Fortunately, R5246 was not damaged and, with its engine problem rectified, left the field later that day. Richard Santus flew N9503 back to the Czech Republic on 25 April and Annabelle Burroughes followed in R5246 a week or so later.
The annual LAA Wessex Strut Fly-in on 28 April attracted an interesting range of types. The oldest of the homebuilts to arrive was Eddie Clapham’s 1967-built Turbulent G-ASFX, while in contrast Peter Borchert’s big, Vedeneyev M-14P radialengined Pitts Model 12 G-MXII (featured in Pilot, April & May) is just a couple of years old. Peter Watts, founder of prominent UK vintage engine company Retro Track & Air, made a rare outing from Badminton in his beautifully finished Sirocco G-CEAO. Although yet to fly, Ken and Caroline Rhodes’ Just Superstol G-RHOD looked impressive on the flight line along with a pair of Bristell Speed Wings, a Sonex, Twister and various RVS.
ABOVE: T8191, in which Kevin Crumplin learned to fly, leads the Tiger Moth formation
LEFT: Peter Watts' immaculate Jurca MJ-5 Sirocco on a rare outing from Badminton
Losing power on take-off, R5246 scraped over the Henstridge boundary to land safely in an adjacent field