On Tuesday 10th July, Voyager took part in the RAF’s Centenary Flypast as part of the iconic celebrations for the RAF’s 100th birthday. Freiya, a Year 8 student at Malvern St James Girls’ School, entered the RAF ‘War in the Skies’ national poetry competition and was invited by the RAF to be a passenger in the Voyager, the RAF’s Strategic Tanker Aircraft.
Freiya’s day started at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, the largest RAF Station in the UK. Sharing the experience with her Mum, Freiya remembers seeing an array of aircraft on the airfield, many of which were also taking part in the flypast, when sat in the departure lounge ahead of boarding the flight.
“When I went into the aircraft I thought it was impressive. The crew were so friendly and one of the RAF staff who had been lucky to win the opportunity to be on Voyager answered all of the questions that my Mum and I had.”
Sitting by the window, Freiya had a great view of their flight and journey into London and got to witness many ‘wow’ moments. Freiya explained:
“As we flew near to London, I could see the sea very close – wow! We came across the land heading towards Buckingham Palace, it was a bit bumpy and I saw two aircraft nearby, flying in the same direction.
“I looked down and saw the London Eye and the Olympic Stadium- I quickly took a picture. We were flying so low, it was amazing and bizarre. We passed the Palace and knew we were on the route out when green fields started to appear.”
Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and many other members of the Royal family, along with members of the public, all turned their eyes to the skies to witness the spectacular flypast of over 100 aircraft, representing the RAF’s history.
On landing back at RAF Brize Norton, Freiya’s Mum received a message from her Sister stating ‘I’ve just watched you and Freiya fly over Buckingham Palace!’. Freiya said it was 'surreal'.
“Who would have thought that entering a poetry competition could result in becoming part of history!”.