Imperial War Museum Duxford
Duxford Airfield, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB22 4QR
- Contact us:
- Opening hours:
Open daily except 24, 25 and 26 December.
Summer 2007 (17 March to 28 October inclusive)
10.00 am - 6.00 pm (Last admission 5pm.)
Winter (29 October 2007 to 14 March 2008 inclusive)
10.00 am - 4.00 pm (Last admission 3pm.)
16 reviews of Imperial War Museum Duxford in English
The Imperial War Museum Duxford is simply a must for everybody who’s interested in history of aviation. Particularly all the large aircraft made in UK (Bristol Britannia, D.H. 106 Comet, D.H. 121 Trident etc.) are something worth to be seen. All these things are set on an original RAF airfield.
The Land Warfare Hall, however, seems somehow superficial to me.
HINT: Visit the museum off-season as it tends to be quite crowded.
I absouloutley love going here It's fun to learn about the history of war, and plus it's very interactive.. I haven't been for about 3 years since my grandad became parylised from the waist down.. we used to go to the memorial days and then look around the museum, I miss it very much,
Reviewed using Blackberry. Get the app
I visited IWM Duxford with my two young uns (7 and 3), and it was a good day out - but, as other posters have noted, quite pricey on entry.
The hands-on exhibits in the Air and Space Hall are very good for introducing kids to the science of aviation, and there's lots of fun to be had nipping in and out of the various planes on display.
There's a good, but small, playground that my 3 year old found met his exacting standards, and plenty of room on the grass to picnic and keep costs down.
The range of exhibits are very impressive, and they're working hard during the Summer to engage kids of all ages with some good hands on activities - particularly in the Battle of Britain hangar. Check out their website for details of what's on and when.
The Land War hangar is well worth the longer walk - and my 7 year old, who's addicted to the BBC's Horrible Histories - found the engaging exhibts really interesting.
One note of caution. We visited on a day when there was lots of flying and this did make it especially interesting. It might have been a little bit of struggle to keep their interest and enthusiasm levels so high without that special addition.
Part of the IWP, Duxford specialises in aircraft (though there are some ground vehicles). More than just a day out, this venue is a walk through the history of air warfare, with a little bit of commercial input.
One of the dominant buildings is the American museum dedicated to the thousands of U.S. servicemen who gave their lives in the Second World War. In there you will see an amazing selection of aircraft from the almost basic piston-engined, through combat jets like the Mcdonell Phantom, the awesome B52 to the ultimate jet - the iconic F117 Blackbird.
Not to be outdone, the British exhibition has it’s own outstanding aircraft; the Spitfire, the Vulcan Bomber from the cold war, the futuristic TSR2 and, in an outside area, you can walk around and climb inside the hird Concorde built (and the first one to exceed Mach2 on a sustained flight.
There are ground exhibitions and some interactive displays. there are tanks to climb on for the active little ones, and a wonderful gallery of original paintings all in the theme of flight.
If you can, try to visit when there are flight programmes
and get the feel of what Duxford was as an active base.
As a tribute to the fallen Americans, you may have time to visit the American Cemetery at Madingley, not far away on the outskirts of Cambridge. Here are listed the names of over 5,000 souls who never returned from missions.
Visiting Duxford is an uplifting experience and definitely leaves you with a feel-good feeling.
If you like planes and world wars this is a great place. We are not that in to planes etc. but we still really enjoyed it. If you and your kids like history, it is quite facinating.
The place is divided into areas. There are a few planes outside that you can go into and check out.
There are also hangers which have various exhibitions in. Some are better than others. There is: The Battle of Britian, The Maritime Collection, The Working Museum (you can see people working on the planes in here), The Flying Museum, The Amercian Air Museum, The Land Warfare Museum and Air Space.
They have various tours on which are quite interesting, but a bit boring for kids.
Air Space is their new hanger, which houses the concorde. You can go on and look around, which is quite interesting. The kids were interested too.
The Land Warfare Museum is more interactive. My kids enjoyed it in here alot more. They have a walk through that goes through The Normandy Experience.
They play videos in various places too, and you can watch as much or as little as you want.
They have a few small cafes, selling drinks and snacks. One in the American Air Museum and one nearer the entrance. Both are nice, but not really that cheap.
They have the usual shop on the way out, which you have to go through to get out, and get the usual crys of 'I want…’ from the kids. There are a few cheaper things though, which is useful if you would like to get a small memento.
Expensive to enter (although children get in free), once inside the site is huge and easily fills a day. Some of the plane information labels lean towards the technical, but there is also a fair amount of social history too. The prefab is a particular favourite exhibit. Within the Land Warfare Hall is the Anglian Regiment Museum with displays about war in the Far East. Rememberance Sunday is always a free day (and very crowded), so consider visiting then.
Air shows are even more expensive, but an amazing experience. There are cafes on site and you can watch planes being restored. The private owners who keep their planes at Duxford are contracted to put in a certain number of flying hours over the site a year, and even if it just the Tiger Moth of Dragonfly (pleasure flights) there is usually something flying at a point during the day.
Not your thing? think again. We visited the Flying Proms as a family outing last year and it was FANTASTIC. You are able to arrive earlier than the show starts which allows you time to wander through the museum areas. The planes are great, and the museum is informative. The flying proms which we attended were amazing - see my review for more details. there are different buildings to visit, they have different atmospheres inside the buildings. I recommend visiting the Land Warfare Hall. This has a display of military vehicles and can give you a little insight intot he conditions that are endured during wartimes. The vehicles displayed run through the timeline from the First World War to the Gulf War, they are kept in running condition. It displays the technical advances that have been made through the years.
Duxford still have a concorde on display, and a whole range of waritime planes. The shows that are put on here are fantastic and well worth the cost.
I must admit to being sceptical before going to the air show earlier in the year as i really didnt thinkit was 'my thing’......how i was wrong!
The flying displays are fantastic & undoubtedly the pinnacle of the day, but you must make time to walk round the different hangers and get to learn at least part of what the Imperial War Museum can teach us.
The chance to get close to & learn about the history is great & although I may not have flown - at least i can say i have been on concorde now!!!
This was so fascinating!! The planes are just outstandingly beautiful and this was a fabulous day out many times round!!! I took my charge and she loved it… I used to live not far from here and the flying displays were breathtaking! Well worth a visit or two…
Well signposted on event days, as its quite a distance away from central Cambridge, on event days there are some fantastic displays, on non event days there is plenty to see and do and the simulators are great, ideal for big parties of people
Put simply, if you like planes, you’ll adore this place. It’s got pretty much everything, from Second World War warbirds like the Spitfire and the Kittyhawk, right up to the modern day machines. They’ve even got a plane so big the hangar was built around it, it wouldn’t fit through the doors (the B-52 Stratofortress in the American Air Museum hangar). The American Air Museum also houses the only SR-71 Blackbird exhibited outside of the United States. They also have an example of the Bouncing Bomb, used in the Dambuster raids.
It doesn’t only do military planes, though. There’s a couple of commercial airliners there too, and even a space shuttle.
And even if planes aren’t your main interest, there’s still things for you to see, such as the land warfare museum (this is quite a walk from the main hangers, though. Take the tram if you can).
The gift shop can be a bit overpriced, but their variety is good. The catering (found in the American Air Museum) is also very good, but again, prices are a little high.
We had a great day out at the Autumn Airshow this year. We didn’t actually get to visit everything as it’s quite a long walk round all the various hangars for a toddler, and the 'train’ can’t run on Airshow days because of the crowds.
The Airspace hangar was my son’s favourite place, but he was a bit sad that a few of the interactive exhibits were broken.
This is a fantastic place. A former WW2 airfield and a huge site (thank goodness for the on-site tram service!). A number of hangers with a wide variety of displays. Exhibits are excellent, from an experimental concorde which you can walk through, the American hanger with the fabulous Blackbird SR-71, and even a hangar full of tanks. Here you can see military aircraft being restored to their former glory as well as a wide range of civilian aircraft which you can go into. Duxford hosts a number of excellent air displays through the year and i would highly recommend their version of the proms (take a picnic and hope for good weather).
The imperial was museum is a great day trip for all the family and its only just south of Cambridge. Its informative and keeps you interested.
Whats more exciting is that you can hire a hangar for functions and parties and dine under neath the planes!
Write your review of Imperial War Museum Duxford
Places nearby Imperial War Museum Duxford
Wandlebury Country Park Wandlebury Ring, Gog Magog Hills, A1307 Cambridge to Haverhill Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB22 3AE
sophieshine: “I work for wandlebury country park, its a great place to work and a great place for days out. the car park is now £2.50 but it really is worth it! ...” more...
Your bookmark has been removed
Your bookmark has been saved
Did you know?
You can access your bookmarks from our mobile apps!
From now on, we'll make sure you get updates about this place.