A large collection of replica historical aircraft that were displayed in three main areas around the park: the R.N.A.S
(Royal Naval Air Service) Exhibition, the Fleet Air Arm Exhibit and the Schneider Trophy Exhibit.
Then – In and around hangers, next to the showground
Now – This area is now part of Calypso Quay
Fleet Air Arm Exhibit
Then – Near the Mountbatten Pavilion on the shore of Abbey Lake
Now – This area is now the part of Lost City where Vortex and Zodiac stand
Schneider Trophy Exhibit
Then – On a section of land that jutted out into Abbey Lake
Now – This area of the lake was later infilled and redeveloped to become Canada Creek
Official Thorpe Park Description:
In the early years of Thorpe Park Leisure Sport Ltd owned a large collection of replica historical aircraft. These were displayed around the park in three main exhibits: the R.N.A.S Exhibition, the Fleet Air Arm Exhibit and the Schneider Trophy Exhibit.
Each of these exhibits showcased aircraft relevant to their themes:
The R.N.A.S (Royal Naval Air Service) was the air arm of the Royal Navy from 1914 – 1918. So this exhibition was home to replicas of some of the greatest fighting planes from the WW1 era.
The Fleet Air Arm is the branch of the Royal Navy responsible for the operation of aircraft. It was founded in 1937 and is still in service today. This exhibit contained examples of aircraft from WW2 onwards.
The Schneider Trophy exhibit contained replicas of aircraft that were entered into the completion with which the exhibit shared its name. The Schneider Trophy was a prize competition for Seaplanes that was held 11 times between 1913 and 1931.
Some of the aircraft at the park were airworthy and took part in flying displays, where as some were only static displays.
Airco DH2 G-BFVH
Albatros D.Va G-BFXL
Fokker Dr.I G-BEFR
Fokker D.VII G-BFPL
Fokker D.VIII G-BHCA
Sopwith Camel G-AWWY
Sopwith Camel G-BFCZ
Sopwith Strutter G-BIDW
Spad XIII G-PFYO
Supermarine S.5 G-BDFF
Airco DH2 BAPC-112
Bristol M.IC BAPC-135
Curtiss RC3-2 BAPC-140
Deperdussin 1913 Floatplane BAPC-136
Fokker DR.I BAPC-139
Fokker D.VII BAPC-110
Hansa-Brandenburg W.29 BAPC-138
Sopwith Triplane BAPC-111
Sopwith Baby BAPC-137
Supermarine S.6B BAPC-156
Vickers Viking IV BAPC-114
Another replica aircraft on show was the R100. HM Airship R100 was a privately designed and built rigid airship that was manufactured by Vickers and first flew in 1929.
By the mid to late 1980’s most of the collection had left the park with most of the replicas being sold to other collectors and museums, this then opened up new areas of the park for development including the area that is now Canada Creek.
Memories of The Aircraft Displays and Exhibitions:
Facts & Trivia:
The Schneider Trophy race was held eleven times between 1913 and 1931. With the United Kingdom winning five of the competitions in 1914, 1922, 1927, 1929 and 1931.