Malta International Airshow
This was the first attempt by the Malta Aviation Society at holding a fully fledged international airshow in Malta. Park 8 was chosen as the venue where the public could view the aircraft and talk to the aircrew.
An issue which rears is head every year is where to hold the flying display. Due to concerns about low flying aircraft over built up areas, it was decided to hold the display over Marsamxett Harbour for 1993. In 1994, the decision was reversed, and the aerobatics were held over the airfield. Between 1995-1999, it was decided that fast jet aircraft would display over the Sliema sea front, with helicopters and propeller-driven aircraft displaying over Luqa airport. Since the year 2000, however, aerial displays have once again started taking place over the airport, primarily because emergency services will be able to arrive on scene much quicker.
The tables below list the military and civilian participants of all Malta Air Show participants year by year. Each yearly report has been grouped in alphabetical order by country, each country’s participants being listed according to aircraft type. Malta based aircraft will be listed in a separate table. Appropriate notes will be given where necessary. This system will be used for all airshow reports.
For 1994 onwards, the venue for aircraft parking and viewing was changed to Park 4. Although park 8 is bigger, a substantial area had to be cordoned off to make room for the airport’s emergency vehicles to move out of their garages.
With the air show growing in size, use would also be made of Parks 3 and 2. Park 3 (a short walk from Park 4) is used for both static and flying display aircraft, whilst Park 2, (off limits to the public) is used for aircraft holding a flying display.
Of all the air show editions, it is quite probably that the 2005 edition will be amongst the most memorable. For the first time, an F-4 Phantom other than German AF, was seen, when Greece particiapted for the first time with a specially painted F-4. It was the first time that the USAF sent two B-1s, one of which participated in the flying programme, the first time that the US military was doing so. And it was the first time in more the fifty years that a Spitfire and Hurricane again flew over the Maltese Islands. A detailed description of their journey to/from Malta can be found at www.merlinsovermalta.com.