UPDATED: 25 August 2020


Friday 18 to Sunday 20 September

We are working hard to plan for a thrilling 80th Anniversary Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show, including special measures to keep visitors, volunteers and staff safe. Based on current advice, this commemorative event will go ahead but please visit this page for the most up to date information.

Customer Safety is Our Priority

In these unprecedented times, we’ll continue to adapt and review our response to COVID-19 based on advice from the Government and Public Health England, as well as your valued feedback. All measures detailed below are in accordance with current Government advice.

We’ll make it clear where updates have been made, by acknowledging the change of information in the date header, and highlighting ‘Latest Updates’ below.

Latest Updates

  • This is the fourth of our COVID-19 event updates, all of the information below is correct as of 25 August 2020. Please bookmark and return to this page regularly to keep up to date.
  • Currently the Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show weekend will go ahead, with some changes to planned attendance numbers. These are outlined in the policies below.
  • To ensure we can reduce numbers but still commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, we have created a new Friday day to evening event, Duxford Battle of Britain Proms. We hope this new date will ensure people can be part of an event to remember, whilst prioritising the safety of visitors, staff and volunteers. Find out more below.
  • Tickets are on sale now for our three-day commemorative event.

What has changed?

In line with the latest government advice, we have updated our social distancing measures including:

For more information on how we are planning to help keep visitors, staff and volunteers safe, please read on.


Social Distancing Measures
Capacity and new event date

Duxford Battle of Britain Air Shows are popular events. In 2020 we will:

  • Reduce the day capacity on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 September
  • Reduce day capacity to Gold Experience and Premium Members Marquees on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 September
  • By restricting the Air Show to limited visitor numbers, we are better able to ensure our customers are as safe as possible.
  • We understand that reducing visitor numbers to the 80th anniversary Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show will have left some people disappointed.
  • To minimise disappointment, we have created a new day to evening event: Duxford Battle of Britain Proms | Friday 18 September 2020
  • Tickets to Duxford Battle of Britain Proms, like the Air Show, are strictly limited to effectively manage numbers on site

Please read on to find out more.


Social Distancing & Crowd Management

The reduction in numbers and extra event date enables us to put in place the following measures:

  • We will have designated Social Distancing Supervisors with teams of Social Distancing Champions across the site, all easily recognisable in Orange IWM Duxford T-shirts reinforcing social distancing measures and assisting with help and advice
  • There will be social distancing markers across the site including ticket scanning and entry points
  • There will be additional entry points to the site, with more staff to support safe entry onto the showground. 
  • Staff with speakers at entrances will repeat our social distancing messages to help visitors understand the requirements on site before entering the venue. Our commentary team will also reinforce ways to keep safe throughout the show
  • The social distancing markers across the site will also be supported by the designated Social Distancing Supervisors, Social Distancing Champions, staff and volunteers
  • We have created more space to enable safer social distancing onsite by opening the Tank Bank and moving the fence line at the eastern end of the site
  • During the air show, staff will be visible across the airfield, using the 2m markers to provide visual representation of a safe 2m distance, to which visitors will be required to adhere to. Our Social Distancing Supervisors and Champions will work closely with Security, and any visitors deemed to be not complying could be removed.
  • We strongly encourage visitors to wear a face mask at all times in congested areas, but it is mandatory to wear a face mask in indoor spaces or covered areas including marquees, hangars and exhibitions. Those who do not will be removed so that we meet necessary health and safety standards for staff and visitors.
  • Social distancing is required in hangars, exhibitions and halls to manage the flow of visitors within inside spaces. Where we cannot guarantee a safe route around our museum, or enough space on the showground to ensure social distancing, we will close the offer. For this reason, hangars 2 and 5 will not be open to visitors on the day.
  • In the event of adverse weather conditions, indoor spaces will be closed when they reach capacity. This is for the safety of everyone on site, please come prepared for all weather conditions.
  • Additional security staff will be available to control entry to hangars.
  • Accessibility policies will be updated in line with Government advice.
Gold Experience & Premium Members Area

The Gold Experience and Premium Members area will have strictly limited capacity and the following social distancing measures in place:

  • Social distancing markers for entry and accessing amenities.
  • Additional toilet facilities – with staff and regular cleaning rotas.
  • Additional staff to monitor movement and safety of visitors
  • We strongly encourage visitors to wear a face mask at all times in congested areas, but it is mandatory to wear a face mask in indoor spaces or covered areas including marquees, hangars and exhibitions.
  • Due to limited space inside our areas, we encourage you to bring your own personal protection equipment (PPE) to wear 
Hygiene and Safety Measures
Measures in Place

To underpin our social distancing policy, we will also:

  • Increase staff numbers on site to help control the number of people in each hangar and enforce our social distancing policy outlined above.
  • Staff and volunteers will be easily identifiable, adhere to social distancing regulations, and be provided with suitable PPE, including our designated Social Distancing Supervisors and Social Distancing Champions.
  • There will be stations with hand sanitisers (NHS grade) at all entrances, catering areas and entrances to hangars. Where possible, we encourage visitors to also bring their own hand sanitisers to keep with them and use throughout the day.
  • These sanitiser stations will be staffed to ensure they are topped up throughout the day, with visitors encouraged to use the sanitiser on entry and exit.
  • Additional toilets will be installed across the site; spaced apart for safe queuing and all with hand sanitiser facilities (NHS grade)
  • There will be one cleaner available per toilet block to enable cleanliness and high standards of hygiene
  • The public event areas will be cleaned every evening.
  • We will be increasing staffing in all key areas which include entry points, hangars, exhibitions and toilets.
  • Where staff are in direct contact with the public, they will be provided with suitable PPE to keep both parties safe.
  • Our event map will clearly include locations of handwashing facilities and toilets, which will be staffed and cleaned regularly.
  • All key areas will have a dedicated cleaner with suitable PPE, who will be in the location throughout the day to keep areas sanitised.

These areas will proactively include:

  • Toilets
  • Handrails on stairs
  • Door handles
  • Touch screens
  • Information stands
  • AirSpace interactive items
  • Lift Calls points
  • Card points
  • Food collections areas
  • Chairs and benches
  • Bins
  • Shop counters
  • Kiosks

Please help us by using hand sanitiser, washing hands thoroughly, observing social distancing markers, and where possible, please bring and use your own PPE. Together we can make this event as safe as possible during unprecedented times.

Additional Information
Travel & Arrival
  • We will be providing more entrance points on the day in order to avoid long queues on entry and reduce crowds around the visitor centre.
  • We will still be providing shuttle buses for visitors that require transport from Cambridge and Royston stations
  • Buses will run at reduced capacity and timetables due to operator restrictions. We will be following the Stagecoach policy of allowing 20 people per bus. Please see Stagecoach Shuttle Buses section below for more information.
  • Our shuttle services and partners will also be required to follow Government guidelines and requirements to keep visitors safe.
Supporting Visitors

We have put the above measures in place to ensure visitors are protected during their visit.

We will update this COVID-19 response document regularly in line with government announcements and advice to keep visitors up to date with any changes to our policy and ensure we protect visitors, staff and volunteers.

Our designated Social Distancing Supervisors, supported by our security teams, are there to enforce social distancing measures and ensure those who don’t comply are removed from site. Social Distancing Supervisors support a team of Social Distancing Champions easily recognisable in orange branded t-shirts across the site and can offer help and advice on the day.

Before the event, we will update ticket holders by email with our final plans for the event and advise on any actions visitors can take to help support us.

As a charity, ticket sales help us tell more important stories. We hope that people can support and attend this event by booking in advance.

Please do join our email list so we can keep you updated on ticket sales and our social distancing policies on the day.

Supporting Staff and Volunteers

We are putting in place a programme of training and guidance for staff and volunteers, supporting visitors on the day and working across the showground.

Staff and volunteers will use social distancing measures to interact with visitors where possible and apply strict hygiene policies.

Visitors are required to observe suitable social distancing measures as a condition of entry. Those who do not will be removed so that we meet necessary health and safety standards for staff, volunteers and visitors.

Supporting Traders and Suppliers

All suppliers and entertainers onsite have their own Covid-19 risk assessment plan in place to support IWM in keeping you safe on site. This includes temperature checks for catering staff.

Our suppliers will also be provided with guidance on our social distancing policy and hygiene requirements.


In the event the 80th anniversary Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show three-day event needs to be cancelled following government advice and COVID-19 updates, we will inform ticket holders of our refund policy. Please ensure you actively use and monitor the email account you provide when confirming your eticket.

If you are a ticket holder for Duxford Air Festival 2020 and/or Flying Legends 2020 and wish to purchase a ticket to Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show whilst claiming your ticket refund, please complete the form that can be found here to let us know your preferred option.

If you are unable to transfer your ticket purchase to attend the 80th anniversary Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show weekend, please consider donating your ticket price. As a charity, now more than ever IWM needs your support to ensure we can continue to tell personal stories and experiences of conflict for current and future generations to come.

Grandstand Experience Cancellation

The 80th anniversary Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show is still expected to go ahead on Saturday 19 & Sunday 20 September.

We welcome millions of visitors to our museums and historic sites every year. The wellbeing of our visitors, staff and volunteers will always be our top priority.

After careful consideration, taking into account government guidelines on social distancing, we have taken the decision to remove the Grandstand Experience from this year’s event. We will refund your Grandstand Experience ticket, while your Air Show ticket will remain valid and can be used on the day. 

IWM is both a museum and a charity, and we are currently suffering from a significant fall in income. If you would be willing to forgo your refund and instead donate the amount to IWM, we would be very grateful. Every donation helps IWM tell stories that deserve to be told.  Once again, your air show ticket is not affected and will remain valid.

We fully expect the Grandstand Experience to be available again for our air shows in 2021.

Stagecoach Shuttle Buses

We will be running shuttle buses to and from Cambridge and Royston train stations and Trumpington  Park & Ride.  Our transport partner, Stagecoach, will be managing routes and safety on the day. To find out more please read their 'Stay Safe When You Travel' guidance.

Symptoms and Illness

Following government and Public Health England guidance, if you have a temperature, cough or shortness of breath, please do not attend the event to protect our staff, visitors and volunteers.

If you have any of the above symptoms 14 days before the event, you should self-isolate.

For people feeling ill on the day with COVID-19 symptoms, there will be an isolation area; away from the public and supported by NHS staff.

For more advice and information on COVID-19 symptoms, please check the official websites below:

NHS Symptoms Check

Government Guidance

Supporting the NHS

We will be working closely with NHS services to ensure the support level is correct and in line with the needs of the event and crowds, and without putting pressure on local NHS services.

NHS track and trace will be in place, please ensure your booking email is your primary email address and you check it regularly. Your contact details will be stored up to 21 days after the event.