Shoreham Airshow 2016 decision announced

Shoreham Airshow organiser Derek Harber, RAFA secretary general Nick Bunting and flying display director Rod Dean at Shoreham Airport

Shoreham Airshow organiser Derek Harber, RAFA secretary general Nick Bunting and flying display director Rod Dean at Shoreham Airport

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THE Shoreham Airshow will not go ahead this year, it was announced this morning.

Shoreham Airshow Ltd, the holding company that has been responsible for the airshow since 2003, issued a statement announcing the 2016 decision.

The company said when and if it was appropriate to do so, it would explore the possibility of a 2017 airshow.

In the meantime, it continued to be fully committed to assisting the Air Accidents Investigation Branch with its ongoing investigation following the disaster at last year’s airshow.

The statement read: “Following careful consultation and consideration, Shoreham Airshow Ltd has decided that the 2016 Shoreham Airshow will not go ahead.

“The decision has been taken primarily out of respect for all those affected by last August’s tragedy and also in view of the ongoing Air Accidents Investigation Branch investigation – and any review of their regulations that the Civil Aviation Authority may subsequently undertake.

“We understand that this decision may be disappointing for many who have been part of the extended Shoreham Airshow family over the years. We would like to thank everyone who has supported the air show for the last 26 years, particularly local volunteers and the surrounding community.

“The thoughts and deepest condolences of everyone at Shoreham Airshow Ltd remain with all of the victims of the tragedy.”

East Worthing and Shoreham MP Tim Loughton remains a strong supporter of the airshow and hopes an appropriate event can be arranged in future.

He said: “It is unfortunate that the organisers of the airshow have had to take this difficult decision but I fully respect their reasons for doing so and I pay tribute to the sensitive way in which they have handled this announcement.

“With the continuing uncertainty over the exact causes of this terrible accident and the likely response from the Civil Aviation Authority, once all the facts are known this decision became inevitable given all the planning that is involved.

“Crucially it has also been taken as a mark of respect from the victims of the crash and the families who still need to get to the truth of what went wrong.

“Once a full report has been made with whatever recommendations are necessary, not just for Shoreham but for air displays up and down the country, I hope that the organisers will be able to consider an appropriate event in 2017 as long as additional safety measures can be realistically taken and the safety of spectators, residents and participants remains paramount.

“We should remember that this is a charity event which is run by volunteers and has raised over £2million for RAFA over its 26-year history and I pay tribute to their dedication and acknowledge that they have also been adversely affected by this tragic accident which was not of their making.”

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