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Crowds turn out for ‘spell-binding’ Bray Air Display

Royal Jordanian Falcons headline opening day during weekend of flying acrobatics

Members of the Royal Jordanian Falcons perform in front of Bray Head during the Bray Air Display. Photograph: Alan Betson

Elite Army parachutists plunged more than 1,200 metres from the skies over Co Wicklow on to Bray seafront on Saturday to kick-start Ireland’s biggest air show.

Organisers say thousands turned out for the first of two days of aviation acrobatics and other events at this year’s Bray Air Display, the 14th since it began in 2005.

The Defence Forces Black Knights Parachute Team opened the weekend with their drop on to the shoreline, and were followed by performances from the Irish Air Corps and The Ravens aerobatic display team.

A Royal Air Force Tucano aircraft, a P51 ‘Miss Helen’ Mustang and a Sukhoi Su-31 all took to the skies, as did Ireland’s “Flying Dentist” Eddie Goggins and and stunt pilot Richard Goodwin.

Children enjoy the amusements while the Coast Guard helicopter passes by during the Bray Air Display. Photograph: Alan Betson
Members of the Royal Jordanian Falcons perform during the Bray Air Display. Photograph: Alan Betson

The 2½-hour display was closed with headline acts, the Royal Jordanian Falcons, who flew four Extra-330 LX aircraft.

Sé Pardy, director of Bray Air Display, described the line-up as the “crème de la crème of Irish and international aviators”, adding that they put on “a spell-binding show”.

Sunday’s highlights will include a formation display of Aer Lingus A320s, the Irish Air Corps in a Pilatus PC9 aircraft, and The Blades – an aerobatic team made up of former Red Arrow pilots.