My last trip of the year to LFA 7 gave me a rare a visitor in the shape of G-VIVM, a Jet Provost T Mk 5P of Swords Aviation. G-VIVM is a former RAF aircraft (serial XS230) originally built as the penultimate Mk 4 aircraft in 1964 but rather than being delivered to the RAF it was upgraded to Mk 5P standard, the P denoting a prototype.
It was assigned to the Empire Test Pilots School and then to the Aircraft and Armament Experimental Establishment at MOD Boscombe Down for trials of the Mk 5 standard. With this role complete it returned to the Empire Test Pilots School to serve as a spin trainer until 14th July 1993 when it was retired.
It was purchased by the Transair Pilot Shop in 1994 and in 1995 it had a complete strip down and had the Boscombe Down raspberry ripple paint scheme refreshed. In then severed as one part of the Transair Jet Provost Duo display team.
After the 1996 and 1997 display season Transair swapped their two Jet Provosts for two Strikemasters and G-VIVM was sold to the International Test Pilots School where it operated from BAe Woodford, Coventry Airport and North Weald.
In 2001 it was sold once again to Swords Aviation who are still the current owner and have kept the International Test Pilots School logo on the tail and text under the cockpit.
The afternoon provide two passes by a pair of aircraft from the Marham Wing.
The first was the unmarked RAF Tornado GR4 093 (serial number ZD745) and the second was RAF Tornado GR4 053 (serial number ZA564) painted in specials markings to celebrate the 90 year anniversary of the formation of 31 Squadron known as ‘Goldstars’.
By late afternoon the light had faded to the point where the f/5.6 lens I was using could no longer provide the shutter speed I require (at a reasonable ISO setting) so I decided to switch to taking low shutter speed panning photos.
This one was shot at 1/125s.
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