The ABC will broadcast two special programs to celebrate the Centenary of Air Force in late March.
On March 29 at 9.30pm, a one-hour news feature, To The Stars: 100 years of the Air Force, will explore the evolution of Air Force from canvas and wooden-framed aircraft to the high-tech, supersonic, stealth F-35A Lightning II with exclusive archival footage.
Then, on March 31 at 10am, AIR FORCE 100 – a Commemoration of 100 years of the Royal Australian Air Force, will feature a two-hour live event from Government House in Canberra.
To The Stars: 100 years of the Air Force was written by actor William McInnes.
To make the program, the ABC crew filmed interviews with 15 people on RAAF Bases Richmond, Wagga and East Sale, in the Canberra offices and at the Australian War Memorial over four months.
To The Stars showcases a treasure trove of vision the ABC has tracked down, according to the ABCs Michael Reid.
“We’ve really enjoyed finding the little stories hiding behind the big,” Mr Reid said.
“Those stories include that of the first Indigenous fighter pilot (Warrant Officer Len Waters) and the much-changed role women have played in the Air Force over the years.
“It is an interesting journey through time.”
The live coverage of the centenary celebrations will be hosted by Lisa MIllar, and will pay tribute to generations of Air Force men and women and look to the future with a focus on cyber and space capabilities.
It will also showcase a mass flypast over Canberra, featuring more than 60 aircraft and the Queen’s Colour Parade.
This event will feature a variety of aircraft, including the Spitfire, Caribou, C-130J, F/A-18 Hornet and the F-35A Lightning II, and a 12-minute display by the Air Force Roulettes.
Both programs will be available on ABC TV.
For more information on Air Force Centenary events, see the Air Force 2021 website.