Skip to main content

Air Display Museum

A Collection celebrating air displays,aerobatics, test flying, and all things aeronautical.

Home
About the site
54 Squadron
Arlett Dan
Army Air Corps Historic A
Arundell Andy
Asas de Portugal
Aspden Alec
Bacon George
Banfield Tony
Barnstormers
BBMF
BBMF extras
Biggin Hill
Black Arrows
Black Cats
Black Eagles
Blue Angels
Blue Angels Extra
Blue Chips
Blue Eagles
Blue Eagles Extras
Blue Eagles photos.
Blue Herons
Blue Impulse
Bothelin Jacques
Breitling Fighters.
Buccaneer
Bulldogs
Canadian Warplane Heritag
Chinook Display
Collins Pete
Competition Aerobatics
Concorde
Davies Phil
Deacon Allan
Diables Rouge
Eagles
EVAA
F15 West Coast
F16 East Coast
Falcons
Farley John
Farnborough Airshow
Flying Jokers
Frecce Tricolori
Frecce Tricolori Extras
Freer Sir Robert
Garside Beattie Les
Gazelles
Greenham Common
Ground Acts
Halcones
Hanna Ray
Harold Anthony
Harrier
Harrier Display
Harvard Display Team
Haydon Baillie O
Hercules Display
Hewitt Ian
Howley Tony
Jaguar Display
Jones Laura
Jones Peter
Karo As
Lee Bob
Lightning
Linton Blades
Long Patrick
Lygo Sir Raymond
Marson Andy
Masefield Barry
McAuley George
Meeson Phil
Merchant Eddie
Merlin Display Team
Mig Test Pilots
Mirage 2000
Moonrakers
Moss Chris
Norman Spiney
Other Suits
Paris Air Show
Patrouille de France
Patrouille de France Extr
Patrouille Swiss
Patrulla Aguila
Perrin David
Phantom
Poachers
Programmes
Red Arrows
Red Arrows Brochures
Red Arrows Brochures 2
Red Arrows covers
Red Arrows Extras
Red Arrows Gnats
Red Barons
Red Checkers
Red Indians
Red Pelicans
Rothmans Aerobatic Team
Rothmans biographies
Rothmans Information
Roulettes
Royal Naval Historic Flt
Rumens Kev
Russian
Russian Swifts
Sally B
Seward Dave
Sharks
Shaw Phil
Silver Birds
Silver Eagles
Silver Stars
Simmonds Barrie
Skyhawks
Snowbirds
Snowbirds Extras
Sparrowhawks
SR71
Stearman
Stow Mike
Swords
Taylor John
Tempest Barry
Thunderbirds
Thunder Tigers
Tiger Club
Tornado F3 Display
Turbulents
Typhoon Display Team
Vintage Pair
Vulcan
Vulcan Display Flight
Williams Sam
 
David Seward A.F.C.

 

 

As commanding officer of the RAF’s Firebirds, which had been set up in 1961, he was stationed at Wattisham, near Ipswich, for two years. The display team flew fighters, nine English Electric Lightnings, which were then the fastest in the world and capable of flying at twice the speed of sound. The Lightning was to be the last front line fighter used in an aerobatic team by the R.A.F.

 

He also commanded the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, flying Spitfires, Hurricanes and a Lancaster at many displays including the Paris Air Show and Farnborough.

 

Group Captain Seward, who was awarded the Air Force Cross for “an act or acts of valour, courage or devotion to duty whilst flying,” also receiving the Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air.

 

Born in Northampton, he joined the RAF in 1949 as a trainee pilot to do National Service after starting in the Boys’ Brigade. In those early days, he flew “heavies” including the Canberra but in his 37-year career flew the Meteor, Venom, Javelin and Lightning. He was chief instructor on Lightning jets between 1972 and 1975, when he led the operations wing at RAF Coltishall.

 

On exchange duties with the American Air Force, he flew the F-86, F-102 and F-106. His son, Nick, then with 29 Squadron, flew him in a McDonnell Douglas Phantom F4.

 

He was to spend a large part of his career in Norfolk and was commanding officer at Neatishead for two years from July 1978, after serving as Wing Commander air defence at RAF headquarters strike command at High Wycombe.

After a final posting to Cyprus, he retired from the RAF and became Norfolk branch director of the British Red Cross in May 1986, where he worked for about 10 years.

Sadly Group Captain Seward died on 25th January 2011.

 

 

 

Irvin flying jacket, although obtained when he was the boss of Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, he never actually used it aboard any of the fighters.