Step into the world of fabric covered wings, bracing wires and wooden props when you meet the Tiger Moth! This magnificent flying machine is the stuff of dreams for any classic aviation fan and even today the Moth holds a very large place in hearts of anyone who has ever flown in one. This is British aeronautical engineering at its best!
With a fair few Tiger Moth planes still flying out of a range of airfields around the country, we are able to offer a variety of experiences in this wonderful biplane. We also offer flights in two other vintage cousins to the Moth - the Stampe and the Stearman, as well as other vintage monoplanes like the Chipmunk and Harvard, so there’s plenty of opportunity for you to experience old-school biplane flying courtesy of IntotheBlue! Read more...
• Vintage biplane flights from Shoreham nr Brighton • Fly in a Stampe or a 1940 Tiger Moth - your choice • Shoreham is the country's oldest licensed airfield • Great atmosphere at this Art Deco airfield
• Fly in a 1942 Boeing Stearman American biplane • Take off from Pent Farm private airstrip nr Hythe • Fly the vintage plane yourself once at altitude • 30 or 60 minute flight in this classic US biplane
• Miliary vehicles, Tigers & Dragon Rapides combined at Duxford • Tiger Moth lesson, Dragon sightseeing & APC drive • Short hosted tour to a behind the scenes IWM area • Briefing & closing reception in the control tower
The Tiger Moth has a fascinating history. The RAF needed a trainer and fast. De Havilland proposed the Gipsy Moth, but it was rejected with one of the main reasons being that the position of the aircraft's top wing meant a pilot wearing a parachute couldn't bail out of the plane.
So de Havilland hastily went back to the workshop (no time for going back to the drawing board) and made several changes, including pushing the wings forward and created the Tiger version of the Moths.
From full production in 1932, to being retired from the RAF in 1952, this legendary aircraft was the RAF's Primary Trainer. She was a formidable plane for newbie pilots and although simple to fly, she's very difficult to master and can be quite a handful - especially in the wind. Instructor pilots loved it, as she certainly knew how to weed out the wheat from the chaff, making it easy to select potential fighter pilots.
Life for the Tiger Moths after the RAF
Around 8800 Moths were built and thousands of new recruits had their first taste of flying in a biplane, before progressing to fighter or bomber aircraft. Once demobbed, the planes found themselves new careers as everything from crop dusters to tugs. It's hard to imagine now, but post-war you could pick up a demobbed Tiger Moth for around £60, or you could get two for £100!
Thankfully aviation enthusiasts have kept several of these machines flying from airfields around the country. The oldest on our books is at Headcorn in Kent and she was built in 1933. She was actually the third ever DH82a version ever built and she's still as graceful and smooth as the day she first flew.
And don’t forget, we also offer flights in Stampes and Stearman biplanes. If you don’t know what they look like, check out the Stearman flying experience video filmed in Norfolk.
Experience the sheer glory of the Tiger Moth on your flight
As for taming this unlikely beast of the skies, one of the biggest challenges for modern-day pilots is that there are no brakes (!). You might have heard of the expression 'tail dragger' and that's because originally the Moth had no tail wheel, it was a metal plate that dragged on the ground to slow down, hence no tarmac runway takeoffs. Although many have been modified to include a tail wheel these days.
Having the chance to experience what it was like in the early days of flying is a real privilege. These Tiger Moths are absolute classics of the air and one of the most iconic planes in the aviation industry. She's no high-testosterone fighter, but she can certainly hold her own in the air. So prime the engine, magnetos off, pull the prop, set the throttle, call 'contact' to the ground crew and with a nifty flick of the propeller these vintage biplanes will roar into life...