THE work of a vital Second World War air force was showcased over the weekend.

An exhibition at New Forest Airfields education centre at Sopley detailed the work of the Second Tactical Airforce (2TAF) and its role in D-Day.

John Levesley, education officer for Friends of New Forest Airfields, said the event had proved popular with visitors with members of a cycling club just some of the visitors turning up throughout the day.

The exhibition is one of three the small charity is holding this year at their monthly open day.

The next one will focus on the New Forest on the morning of D-Day.

The Second Tactical Air Force was formed to support the landings by British and Canadian troops on D-Day, and was dedicated to ground attacks.

It included fighter bombers and night bombers and focused on specific tactical targets and precise attacks.

They provided the tug aircraft that towed gliders over and carried paratroopers as well.

Mr Levesley said: “They were quite a big force; we’re talking about 1,500 aeroplanes. It was a force set-up specifically to support the invasion.

“And as troops moved across Europe, they followed.”