If you look up at the skies tomorrow you may see a lot of sunshine, but you might also catch a glimpse of some Second World War aircraft.
Summer’s nearly over and to round it off the Royal Armouries is set to pay tribute to the role of Fareham, Portsmouth and the surrounding area in the lead up to D-Day by staging an historic flypast as part of the Fort Nelson Tattoo.
It will climax with a flypast by a C-47 Dakota from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, which is one of the world’s most famous military transport aircraft and saw widespread use with the Allies in the Second World War.
The sequence highlights the role of the servicemen and women, and local civilians as Portsmouth came under sustained attack from German bombers.
Other activities on the day include marching bands, fireworks and more than a little pomp and circumstance.
The Victorian fortress on Portsdown Hill will come alive with explosive gun firings, rousing military bands, historic re-enactments and displays.
The famous Fort Nelson ‘Big Guns’ will be fired as part of the tattoo.
At the end of the day, the Royal Armouries will light up the darkness with a dramatic fireworks display to celebrate the event.
There’s entertainment throughout the day from The Band of the Parachute Regiment, the Rose and Thistle Pipe Band, the HMS Sultan Volunteer Band, the British Youth Corps of Drums, the Solent Overlord Executive Military Collectors’ Club, the Screaming Eagles Living History Group and Colonel Robert Hammond’s Regiment of Foot (Sealed Knot).
Museum director Peter Armstrong says: ‘It’s particularly fitting that the tattoo features Second World War sequences because Fort Nelson supplied ammunition to the AA batteries that defending the south coast.
‘These weapons gave the local civilian population hope and a sense of fighting back in the dark days of 1940 and 1941.’
Profits from the day will be given to three different charities; ABF The Solders’ Charity, the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity and the RAF Benevolent Fund.
Performances last two hours and grandstand prices range from £18 to £20 per adult, with concessions for children from £16 to £18.
A family ticket for the picnic area (two adults and up to three concessions, including registered disabled, plus serving members of HM Armed Forces) costs from £46 to £54.
For more details on the event or prices, go to fortnelsontattoo.co.uk or call (0113) 220 1887.