Your article: Vulcan bomber finally ‘snapped’ over village

Steve Anderson's picture
Steve Anderson's picture

They say it’s a case of third time lucky.

And, for retired Holme-on-Spalding Moor journalist Steve Anderson, that certainly proved to be the case last Friday when he finally managed to photograph the world’s last flying Vulcan bomber after two near-misses earlier in the week.

Steve was busy gardening on the first two occasions that the aircraft - officially designated as XH558 and based at Robin Hood Airport, near Doncaster - appeared, admittedly as a dot on the horizon but still recognisable through its distinctive triangular shape and roar from its four Olympus engines.

By the time he’d rushed inside and grabbed his camera, the Cold War and Falklands veteran was nowhere to be seen or heard. Undeterred, and with no announcement as to when, or if, the soon-to-be-grounded Vulcan would next be in the area, Steve was ready “just in case” the elusive jet returned.

“I couldn’t believe it when there was a very distant rumble in the middle of Friday afternoon which seemed to be coming from the west,” he said. “There was a storm brewing, with very dark clouds over much of the sky, but it was clear and bright in places looking towards Howden and it was there that I could just make out an aircraft perhaps six or seven miles away.

“With the aid of a telephoto lens I was just able to get a few shots before the Vulcan disappeared again.

“This is a remarkable piece of British engineering that will soon be grounded for good because of the phenomenal cost and complexity of keeping it airworthy.

“By autumn this year, and after numerous public flypasts and displays, XH558 will be gracing our skies no more.”

Steve’s pictures submitted to the Pocklington Post were taken seconds apart as the Vulcan headed “home” to its base at the former RAF Finningley, now Robin Hood Airport.