THE organisers of Bournemouth Air Festival have announced the dates for next year's event.

The 13th annual Air Festival will take place between Thursday, August 20 and Sunday, August 23.

A spokesperson said an estimated 812,000 people attended this year's event. 

Displays this year included the Typhoon, The Blades, RAF Chinook, Strikemaster Pair and the Super Pitts Muscle Plane. 

The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, Fireflies and MiG also appeared as part of this year's line-up.

While the Canadair T-33 Silver Star, the Ultimate Warbirds Flights and Saab Draken made their Air Festival debuts.

Despite rain on Saturday afternoon, all four days of the programme went ahead, including three Night Air displays. 

The 2019 festival drew to a close on Sunday afternoon with a unique fly past by The Blades and Ultimate Warbird Flights and a final Typhoon display.

Chris Saunders, BCP Tourism’s Head of Operations, said: “We’ve enjoyed yet another hugely successful event with impressive displays, good weather and, most importantly, thousands of smiling faces. Night Air is always popular, and this year was no exception with spectacular performances set against glorious sunsets creating must–see displays light up the skies.

“The festival is a great celebration of everything this stretch of coastline has to offer. With action on land, at sea and in the skies, we’re proving that Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole really is the coast with the most!”

During the festival, BCP Council pushed its environmental awareness campaign, Leave Only Footprints, as people were encouraged to help keep the resort’s beaches looking splendid by clearing up after themselves at the end of the day and putting rubbish in the bins provided.

Festival goers and event staff were also encouraged to bring reusable bottles, to download the Refill Dorset app and fill up from taps located along the seafront.

Councillor Lewis Allison, BCP Council Tourism Portfolio Holder, said; “This kind of show inevitably draws attention for many reasons and we’re proud to offer a great day out for all the family. At the same time, work to offset the festival’s carbon footprint demonstrates our commitment to reducing its impact on the environment.

“I’d like to thank the enthusiastic display teams, residents and visitors who have come to watch and all those who work to keep people safe and help the festival run smoothly.”

As well as the aerial entertainment, crowds flocked to the RAF Village, Royal Navy Village and British Army Village. The Lower Gardens hosted this year’s atmospheric Beat Retreat Sunset Ceremony, performed by HM Royal Marines Band Portsmouth.

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