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Another Movie Star Debut

You've seen one of these before, though you may not immediately realise it. It's a Beechcraft 18 and, over 32 years of production (a record at the time) can do anything, more or less.

It's most recognisable screen appearance was arguably Octopussy, where Bond is somehow able to hang on to the fuselage, have and win a fight on the roof at several thousand feet, save the day etc. The Living Daylights also had one as a backdrop and the list of movies where you've seen one is way too long to fit here, although The Day of the Jackal will resonate with some of you of a certain age.

Some of you not of a certain age may have flown one in Grand Theft Auto V and sticking with 21st Century references, Resident Evil Afterlife featured one too.

Over 32 years of production a lot of them were made and when we say that they can do anything, of the 9.000 produced they've been used for cargo, as an airliner, photo reconnaissance, training, bombing, aerial spraying, sterile insect release, fish stocking, dry-ice cloud seeding, aerial firefighting, air-mail delivery, ambulance service, skydiving, freight, weapon- and drug-smuggling, engine testbed, skywriting, banner towing, many movies and airshows. The list of countries which have had one in their military is as long as the list of movies.

This particular one has the most glamorous use of the lot - flying leather-lined living room. It's basically a sea of brown leather and walnut inside and the idea is that two 450hp Pratt and Whitney engines propel it effortlessly about the place at a couple of hundred miles an hour, without spilling a drink (it has a bar) even if it's got a secret agent on the roof. It's also the first time the Airshow has seen one, but not the airfield - it lives here.

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