'˜Right place, right time' '“ Sheffield photographer who snapped Air Force One over city skiesÂ

An eagle-eyed photographer who snapped Air Force One carrying American President Donald Trump flying over Sheffield has told how it was a case of '˜right place, right time'. Â

Friday, 28th December 2018, 7:33 am
Updated Wednesday, 9th January 2019, 1:48 am
Air Force One. Picture: Alan Meloy

Alan Meloy was on his front doorstep taking pictures of aircraft over Chapeltown when he spotted something a bit different flying up above.

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Air Force One. Picture: Alan Meloy

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He quickly photographed the unusual plane and immediately recognised it to be one of the two aircraft used as Air Force One, the name given to the plane which the US President uses.

At this point, Mr Trump's Iraq visit was still top secret - he and First Lady Melania had left Washington DC without fanfare in the middle of the night.

So when Mr Meloy posted the image on photo-sharing site Flickr to see if anyone else had spotted it, he was met with some scepticism - the plane was flying under a false callsign to keep the trip a secret.

But when other enthusiasts spotted the image and also recognised it as one of the two VC-25 planes used as Air Force One, they cross-referenced it with tracking data and deduced the president was likely to be on his way to the Middle East.

With the news being so widely discussed online thanks to the photo, a ban on reporting the trip, agreed with the White House press corps, was lifted.

Mr Meloy said: 'It's one of those weird moments where you're right place and right time.

"Boxing Day dawns clear and bright, the next thing there's an interesting airplane."