Iron Maiden bid for rights to Wymondham man’s photo of their jet as picture goes viral

Robert Starling's photograph of the Iron Maiden jet coming into land in Florida.

Robert Starling's photograph of the Iron Maiden jet coming into land in Florida. - Credit: Archant

A Wymondham man who has described some of his photos in the past 'as a bit rubbish' is now in talks with heavy metal supergroup Iron Maiden after his photo of their plane landing in Florida went viral.

Steve Harris and Janick Gers (right) of Iron Maiden in action. Yui Mok/PA Wire

Steve Harris and Janick Gers (right) of Iron Maiden in action. Yui Mok/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Robert Starling, 66, took the photograph last week as the rocker's Boeing 747 landed at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. It has since gone viral after being viewed over a quarter of a million times on Flickr and liked over 100,000 times on Facebook.

The businessman, who lives in Florida during the winter, said the rockers have since tried to buy the photograph from him.

'After seeing the photo Iron Maiden have been in contact as they want to buy the photo and the rights from me so they can use it for their promotion- but no deal has been made so far,' he said.

The plane, named Ed Force One, was flown from Cardiff to Florida by lead vocalist Bruce Dickison as the band arrived for the first date of their The Book Of Souls World Tour which took place at Florida's BB&T Center last night.

Robert Starling spends the winter in Florida as he doesn't like the cold English weather and is a ke

Robert Starling spends the winter in Florida as he doesn't like the cold English weather and is a keen photographer. - Credit: Archant

Iron Maiden's arrival on the jumbo jet caused quite a commotion amongst plane spotters as they all tussled to get the best photograph but Mr Starling decided to move away from the crowds to get the perfect shot- although he never thought he would snap something so striking.

'It was crazy, cars were just stopping on the highway and people were getting out of their vehicles to take photos of the plane coming into land- I had never seen anything like it,' he said. 'Instead of just getting a standard photo of the plane I decided to think outside of the box and went and stood on a bridge over the main highway. It is by far the best photo I have ever taken as it captured the moment just at the right time.'

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The Run to the Hills hitmakers are flying the jet, full of crew and equipment, all over the world this year as they play venues in 35 countries including Mexico and China to a host of screaming fans.

But one person who will not be rocking out to their hits is Mr Starling who admitted he was not actually a fan of the heavy metal band.

'The airport was full of fans all in their black Iron Maiden T-shirts just trying to get a glimpse of the band as it was the first date on the world tour and everyone wanted to be there,' he said. 'But I don't really like their music at all, it is a bit too in your face for me.'

Mr Starling will spend the rest of the winter in Florida before moving back to Norfolk when the weather gets a bit warmer and he plans to continue his photography out there: 'I have invested a lot of money in my equipment and it is a big hobby of mine, but I don't know if I will ever take a photo as good as this one again.'