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The Hawker Siddeley, then British Aerospace and now BAE Systems Hawk has proved an outstanding global success story. QinetiQ operates a number of Hawk T1s as part of its aircraft fleet at Boscombe Down, including the first Hawk prototype which made the type's maiden flight in 1974, and the unique ASTRA Hawk with variable stability systems allowing the alteration of handling characteristics in flight. They and two other examples on QinetiQ's strength are used primarily by the Empire Test Pilots' School, training the test pilots of the future by means of "demonstrating aircraft performance, stability and control and flying qualities characteristics".

“It was an epic spectacle, as magical as anything you've ever seen in the West End, and as loud as anything you've ever heard at Knebworth.”

Jeremy Clarkson, Television Presenter

“All the thrills, excitement and noise of a Grand Prix, but in the air!”

Jenson Button, Formula 1 Racing Driver

“This is the best airshow!”

Buzz Aldrin, Apollo 11 Astronaut

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