Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Discuss airshows and other aviation events at the Imperial War Museum
MiG_Eater
Posts: 1342
Joined: Sat 18 Nov 2017, 4:58 pm

Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by MiG_Eater »

Message from Nick Grey seen on Facebook:

"A message from Nick Grey

Dear Friends of Flying Legends,
I look at this and the years gone by with immense gratitude for all the wonderful moments we have lived with you our faithful and fanatical community. It is with a heavy heart that we confirm 2019 was the final Flying Legends with our friends at IWM Duxford. We truly hope that our team will find an alternative location to welcome this iconic event and that we will have the privilege of seeing you all again. Thank you for your support and kindness.

Yours sincerely Nick"

User avatar
Tommy
UKAR Staff
Posts: 5681
Joined: Mon 14 Mar 2011, 11:39 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Tommy »



(Just in case anyone wanted the FB post in question)

That’s really quite bombshell news. 😩

User avatar
Talldan76
UKAR Staff
Posts: 1158
Joined: Sat 12 Oct 2013, 6:26 pm
Location: Colchester

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Talldan76 »

I have a feeling this is all down to the IWM.

They have apparently been angling for a long while for all airshows to cease on the site.

A big shame - where else can the show go?

North Weald has been suggested, but is, I think a non-starter because of the closeness of the M11.

MiG_Eater
Posts: 1342
Joined: Sat 18 Nov 2017, 4:58 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by MiG_Eater »

Talldan76 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:47 am


They have apparently been angling for a long while for all airshows to cease on the site.
I find this surprising. Surely they make a lot of money from the May/September shows?

It is very sad news. Personally I am not a regular attender of Legends as i'm more interested in jets than anything else; but this does feel like a real blow to our hobby and I really feel for all you guys who make the yearly pilgrimage.

User avatar
Pen Pusher
Posts: 6652
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 6:34 pm
Location: St Ives, Cambs
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Pen Pusher »

MiG_Eater wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:50 am
Talldan76 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:47 am

They have apparently been angling for a long while for all airshows to cease on the site.
I find this surprising. Surely they make a lot of money from the May/September shows?
Not surprising at all to us regulars. The pretty young things that run Duxford now have no interest in air shows and would be quite happy if there were no exhibits or visitors at Duxford. This September could well be the last air show.

Brian
The Future Of Photography Is Mirrorless

DUXFORDfotoGALLERY
DfG on Facebook

User avatar
Tommy
UKAR Staff
Posts: 5681
Joined: Mon 14 Mar 2011, 11:39 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Tommy »

That’s quite grim reading, Brian. Had no idea things were that bad 😭

darkman
Posts: 118
Joined: Sun 19 May 2013, 4:02 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by darkman »

I would be interested to know how much revenue the shows generate and where they hope to cover the shortfall from. I also thought the museum and shows were a good combo.

Hopefully a new home is found quickly

DaveBr
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 6:08 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by DaveBr »

I was always under the impression that airshow revenue was an essential element of Duxford's budget. Is this no longer the case?

(Understandable of course that Legends might be less valuable to IWM than their own shows)

User avatar
Pen Pusher
Posts: 6652
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 6:34 pm
Location: St Ives, Cambs
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Pen Pusher »

Tommy wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 8:02 am
That’s quite grim reading, Brian. Had no idea things were that bad 😭
Just waiting to see what the new Battle of Britain layout is like in Hangar 4, whether they have kept the large exhibits (aeroplanes) or replaced them with interactive displays. Apparently IWM is quite envious of what has happened in the old BoB hall at Hendon and want to go down that route and hey presto now outside 4 hangar and I believe there are now steps at the Hurricane, like they have at the Cold War jets at Hendon, so visitors can look in the cockpit.

Image

Brian
The Future Of Photography Is Mirrorless

DUXFORDfotoGALLERY
DfG on Facebook

User avatar
rockfordstone
Posts: 900
Joined: Wed 14 Feb 2018, 8:40 pm
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by rockfordstone »

DaveBr wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 8:10 am
I was always under the impression that airshow revenue was an essential element of Duxford's budget. Is this no longer the case?

(Understandable of course that Legends might be less valuable to IWM than their own shows)
likewise.
would be interesting to see how their membership scheme would be impacted if they stopped doing air shows completely. I'd certainly cancel mine if there were no airshows there

User avatar
cgwilson
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun 08 Dec 2019, 4:16 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by cgwilson »

Just reading the comments on whether the IWM wants to stop Airshows etc at Duxford and wondered how they think the place would be profitable if it just relied on exhibits or do they want rid of them also ? So what would be the plans? Sell the site? I think there would be an outcry if that happened .

I would be interested to know if this is based on facts rather than "Just my opinion" A sad day for the Warbird community for sure

MiG_Eater
Posts: 1342
Joined: Sat 18 Nov 2017, 4:58 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by MiG_Eater »

Grim reading indeed. Thank god for Old Warden.

User avatar
EGL
Posts: 357
Joined: Wed 03 Sep 2008, 7:41 pm
Location: Glasgow

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by EGL »

Surprised to read this as a "fairly" regular attender at Legends. One of the main benefits of Duxford previously is it's location and transport links. Easy to get from Stanstead to Cambridge then shuttle bus - for a few years I was able to do it in a day from Glasgow or Prestwick.

However, my last couple of visits to Duxford haven't been as enjoyable, partially down to the crowdline and display changes.

Could work out for the best if an alternative location can be found! Would be interesting to see if TFC would fly everything out for the weekend.

User avatar
boff180
UKAR Staff
Posts: 9029
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 2:28 pm
Location: Solihull
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by boff180 »


User avatar
rockfordstone
Posts: 900
Joined: Wed 14 Feb 2018, 8:40 pm
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by rockfordstone »

boff180 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 8:50 am
so it's all about money then

User avatar
Talldan76
UKAR Staff
Posts: 1158
Joined: Sat 12 Oct 2013, 6:26 pm
Location: Colchester

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Talldan76 »

Reading between the lines of the IWM press release, I would say that they wanted more money flowing back to them than TFC were willing to pay.

They talk of exciting changes to their own Air Show programme for next year...

Also, sounds like somewhere else found Covid to be a very good reason / excuse to cover up the real decisions?

User avatar
rockfordstone
Posts: 900
Joined: Wed 14 Feb 2018, 8:40 pm
Contact:

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by rockfordstone »

Talldan76 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 8:57 am
Reading between the lines of the IWM press release, I would say that they wanted more money flowing back to them than TFC were willing to pay.

They talk of exciting changes to their own Air Show programme for next year...

Also, sounds like somewhere else found Covid to be a very good reason / excuse to cover up the real decisions?
i'm willing to bet that they intend to replace legends with something they run so they can take all the revenue rather than just shop sales and whatever TFC pay for the site hire

User avatar
Wrexham Mackem
UKAR Staff
Posts: 2195
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 4:46 pm
Location: Farndon, Chester

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Wrexham Mackem »

rockfordstone wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 9:00 am
Talldan76 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 8:57 am
Reading between the lines of the IWM press release, I would say that they wanted more money flowing back to them than TFC were willing to pay.

They talk of exciting changes to their own Air Show programme for next year...

Also, sounds like somewhere else found Covid to be a very good reason / excuse to cover up the real decisions?
i'm willing to bet that they intend to replace legends with something they run so they can take all the revenue rather than just shop sales and whatever TFC pay for the site hire
Yep. Seems very much to be the case. It seems that Legends is taking a mid summer slot, and not providing the income for IWM that they would get running their own event. Make of that what you will.
its time to kick the tyres and light the fires

https://www.flickr.com/photos/151934326@N08/albums

danjama
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed 13 Jul 2011, 1:02 am

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by danjama »

Pen Pusher wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:57 am
MiG_Eater wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:50 am
Talldan76 wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 7:47 am

They have apparently been angling for a long while for all airshows to cease on the site.
I find this surprising. Surely they make a lot of money from the May/September shows?
Not surprising at all to us regulars. The pretty young things that run Duxford now have no interest in air shows and would be quite happy if there were no exhibits or visitors at Duxford. This September could well be the last air show.

Brian
My thoughts exactly.

Edited to add, if it becomes anything like the old BoB hangar at Hendon or the remodelled IWM London, I'm oot!
Last edited by danjama on Tue 25 Aug 2020, 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

DaveBr
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 6:08 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by DaveBr »

It seems to me that Flying Legends, as an iconic event that attracts visitors from around the world, contributes rather more to the Duxford brand than *just* direct revenue.

What a shame that no one at IWM has the foresight to recognise this.

rutley
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun 03 Nov 2019, 9:45 am

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by rutley »

A long time ago, there was a plan to do away with airshows at Duxford. That has now passed but the problem is now cash, or lack of it. Covid was beyond the control of the IWM but losing Legends was not. The income loss will only make their problems worse.

Mike
Posts: 1850
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 5:08 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by Mike »

rutley wrote:
Tue 25 Aug 2020, 10:00 am
A long time ago, there was a plan to do away with airshows at Duxford. That has now passed but the problem is now cash, or lack of it. Covid was beyond the control of the IWM but losing Legends was not. The income loss will only make their problems worse.
The whole point is that they will now organise their own major event in July, and all the profit will accrue to them instead of TFC. IWM have been after the July slot for themselves for a number of years now, and it was touch-and-go whether TFC put on Flying Legends at all for the past couple of years (look how late the date was confirmed a couple of years back, with last-minute negotiations going on behind the scenes)

The maths is easy to do. 15,000-20,000 people a day for two days at £30-£40 a ticket, plus Gold Passes, flightline walk, programmes, landing fees, stall revenue etc, and you get to somewhere between £1m and £1.5m gross revenue. Unlike other events, the fixed costs of running the site on a daily basis are already covered year-round by IWM (which reduces the additional costs of running the event) so there will be a tidy profit coming from each airshow.

This news comes as no surprise, sadly.

DOUGHNUT
Posts: 334
Joined: Sat 21 Mar 2009, 2:49 pm

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by DOUGHNUT »

How long before TFC decide to move all restoration and operations away from Duxford ? Always understood TFC received favourable rent from IWM in return for providing access to the hangar to see their collection all year around. It is not just about airshows.

User avatar
neilos
Posts: 790
Joined: Tue 02 Sep 2008, 9:10 am
Location: sunny melbourn

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by neilos »

It’s also going to be a huge hit financially for the local community as well!

User avatar
pbeardmore
Posts: 4354
Joined: Thu 06 Nov 2008, 9:16 am

Re: Flying Legends to cease at Duxford

Post by pbeardmore »

The IWM press realease is 100% spin. If they do run a similar style of show, I cant see them having the same connections and influence regarding getting special guests in in the way that FL has done over the years. "The glory days are over" is a tempting reaction and...actually , I fear it's true. Many of the IWM shows have been bland and FL , at it's peak, had a magic of it's own and , surely, TFC , must take credit for that.

I really do hope that TFC will use their imagination, infrastructure, experience and marketing skill to come up with a new event at another location both to raise funds and keep the magic alive. Bring back The Fighter Meet? Mini-Legends at Old Warden? It's a big ask. Not exactly over burdened with venues.

I get the impression that there is much goodwill towards TFC from airshow fans and I would hope that we would support any new venture they come up with, even though it may not be on the scale of the Duxford events.

"Glory days well they'll pass you by
Glory days in the wink of a young girl's eye
Glory days, glory days"
“The best computer is a man, and it’s the only one that can be mass-produced by unskilled labour.”

Post Reply