Great War Display Team - Civilian
The team began life in 1988 as 'The Wombats' and will be celebrating both the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force as well as their own 30th anniversary during 2018.
The team currently operates nine aircraft comprised of five different types. The Avro 504 is a replica built under licence in Argentina and it joined the team in 2017 after being reassembled and made airworthy by one of the team, Matthew Boddington.
The Sopwith Triplane is a 1997-built replica of the Triplane prototype, which itself first flew in 1916. It was the forerunner to the famous Sopwith Camel, although the Triplane was itself popular amongst those who flew it thanks to its performance and manoeuvrability.
German attempts to replicate the success of the Sopwith Triplane resulted in the Fokker Dr1 Triplane - leading to an aircraft that helped a number of German aces including Werner Voss and Manfred von Richthofen. The GWDT operate two DR1s, both built in the past 12 years and painted to represent actual aircraft from the First World War.
The Royal Aircraft Factory BE2c was Britain's first ever military aeroplane and was the backbone of the Royal Flying Corps at the outbreak of hostilities. The team's aircraft is a replica from 1969, built specifically for the film 'Biggles Sweeps the Skies'.
The Royal Aircraft Factory SE5a was a popular and widespread fighter, with over 5,000 being built after flying for the first time in 1916. The team owns three replicas, all painted in historically accurate markings.
The final aircraft type operated by the team is modelled on the Junkers CL1, a German ground attack aircraft that first flew in 1917.
A number of these aircraft will be joining us at the 2018 Air Tattoo to display the pioneering days of aerial warfare.