Traffic - A word of warning

All you'll ever need to know about the UK's biggest airshow
User avatar
LN Strike Eagle
UKAR Staff
Posts: 10657
Joined: Mon 21 Jul 2008, 3:29 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by LN Strike Eagle »

Manonthefence wrote:Dan

8am is not bright and early for RIAT

Only ever been a problem once before arriving at that time, with the traffic chaos in 2002.

If the traffic is that bad 30 mins after gates opened, what must it have been like for those joining the queues an hour or two after that? Traffic jams on that scale, that early, is poor. If queues were building before gates opened, then open the gates early and get the queues moving like any other airshow would.
"You really are an oafish philistine at times!"

User avatar
Lightning
Posts: 344
Joined: Sun 07 Sep 2008, 1:10 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Lightning »

Are the people here who set off from home after 7 a.m new to RIAT? I did this a couple of times in the late 1990s, and learned my lesson: aim to get to the queue for 6:00-6:30 a.m at the latest. The longest queue at that time is for getting in the gate for your ticket on foot :grin:

I gave this rat race a miss this year though :wink:

User avatar
Glenn Beasley
Posts: 737
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 12:46 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Glenn Beasley »

Best get up at 3:30am then next year and not 04:00am.... :whistle:

tomw94
Posts: 102
Joined: Sat 09 May 2009, 11:13 am

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by tomw94 »

i was up at 5am and arrived at RIAT at 7:15 am and didnt get in untill 7:45 so the ques after about 8 must have been awfull.

Johnhbailey
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue 14 Jul 2009, 2:46 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Johnhbailey »

Left home at 6:30 a.m. , red route through Burford. Followed the signs through the lanes around the north of Lechlade. Hit the rear of the queue ( in said lanes, north of the A417 ) at 08:00, was out of the car and walking to the entrance at 09:10 - having been selected by plod for on-base parking. Took a slow walk back to the car after the Vulcan display ( we were in the CSMA enclosure at the west end of the runway ) and arrived back at the car after the RNZAF 757 had finished - 16:45 or so ? LOTS of other people packed up after the Vulcan too. Left via Fairford village - not deliberately, but plod were more interested in watching the aircraft than directing the traffic and the signs weren't helpful - and turned right onto A417 towards Lechlade. Hit tailback going into Lechlade but that was my fault for not using the numerous avoiding routes available to anyone who can read an OS map. Eventually dived off through Southrop, easy run from there. Huge queue going north through Burford ( probably that bl**dy bridge again ) but managed to spot the tailback from the A40 roundabout so used the A40 instead and went home via Oxford. Back in Milton Keynes at 19:00.

I'm puzzled though - if it took me 70 minutes to get in on the Red route, how was it that the original started of this thread arrived at the queue at the smae time and took 2 hours to get in ?

John

webmonkeyuk
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon 08 Sep 2008, 8:51 am

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by webmonkeyuk »

i came in via the green route i think it was, down the a429 anyway then on to the a417 got there about 8:45 after setting off at 4:00 from teesside, the only traffic i hit was near poulton which i was in for around 20 min but seen as i was heading to totterdown the traffic cleared after the airshow turn off. coming back home was just as easy

ursa_major
Posts: 651
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 7:11 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by ursa_major »

Yesterday was interesting traffic-wise:

We left Lincoln 0400, by 0555 we were having breakfast at the Cherwell valley services. Left the services 0625, and headed in via the Burford & the red route. We got through lechlade with no hassle, and got to the Shell garage on the A417 at the top of the Whelford road at 0730. Finally got parked on-base at 0810. The cause of the problems? 2 lanes in use until the junction in Whelford village, when the right lane was forced to merge into the left with very little notice, as the lane had been coned off to allow traffic to join unobstructed from the right. Bad call that early in the day. Stop/start using a policeman to work the junction would have been a lot smoother.

On the way out, mindful of the sell-out, we held back until 1945 before trying to leave to get to our hotel in Oxford. Less than 10 minutes to get off base and onto the Whelford road. 35 minutes from joining the road to turning on to the A417. Why? No signs telling the queues that at the end, the left lane would go left, the right lane right. Signs appeared about 50 yards or so from the junction. This cause chaos as the majority of the left hand land, not thinking in advance, then had to merge into the right hand lane just before the junction. Police were manning the A417 junction and this flowed freely once you'd got to it. Heading into Lechlade to go out via Faringdon, we hit another jam before we'd got anywhere close to Lechlade. it took us around 35-40 minutes to get through Lechlade because there had been some kind of accident in the village, with an ambulance blocking most of the road at a choke-point on the bend forcing cars to drive up onto the little island in the road to get by. Finally arrived at the hotel 2130ish.

b1rdman
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri 10 Jul 2009, 2:56 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by b1rdman »

Meant to leave Witney at 7:30 ish but ended up leaving about 8am due to McDonalds dive thru for breakfast lol

I knew full well that leaving at 8 would mean queuing for longer. Hit the queue on red route at lechlade at about 8.20 and didnt make it to the base until about 9:45 but got on base parking at least which was pretty cool. I've seen worse traffic in previous RIATs!

Have to say though, Wings radio was absolute cack for traffic reports, played far too much music and why dont they broadcast the whole commentry on it?

Getting out was easy. Watched Typhoon from car and then left the base catching some of Italian team on way out. Was back home at 5:45pm

User avatar
Batman3
Posts: 761
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 10:54 am
Location: Chippenham, Wiltshire

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Batman3 »

Went on the green route and joined the queue at 6am, was 30 people back. 6am sounds a stupid time but even 10 minutes later the queue was 100's of people long and multiplied every minute! The trick for RIAT is get there stupidly early and leave stupidly late. Green route on the way home was slow but moving which atleast was something.

BigBlackCat
Posts: 195
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 5:58 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by BigBlackCat »

ursa_major wrote:Yesterday was interesting traffic-wise:

We left Lincoln 0400, by 0555 we were having breakfast at the Cherwell valley services. Left the services 0625, and headed in via the Burford & the red route. We got through lechlade with no hassle, and got to the Shell garage on the A417 at the top of the Whelford road at 0730. Finally got parked on-base at 0810. The cause of the problems? 2 lanes in use until the junction in Whelford village, when the right lane was forced to merge into the left with very little notice, as the lane had been coned off to allow traffic to join unobstructed from the right. Bad call that early in the day. Stop/start using a policeman to work the junction would have been a lot smoother.

On the way out, mindful of the sell-out, we held back until 1945 before trying to leave to get to our hotel in Oxford. Less than 10 minutes to get off base and onto the Whelford road. 35 minutes from joining the road to turning on to the A417. Why? No signs telling the queues that at the end, the left lane would go left, the right lane right. Signs appeared about 50 yards or so from the junction. This cause chaos as the majority of the left hand land, not thinking in advance, then had to merge into the right hand lane just before the junction. Police were manning the A417 junction and this flowed freely once you'd got to it. Heading into Lechlade to go out via Faringdon, we hit another jam before we'd got anywhere close to Lechlade. it took us around 35-40 minutes to get through Lechlade because there had been some kind of accident in the village, with an ambulance blocking most of the road at a choke-point on the bend forcing cars to drive up onto the little island in the road to get by. Finally arrived at the hotel 2130ish.



Had a similar experience to the above one.

Does anyone know why the on base parking was not used fr the early arrivals? we were directed to the red car park field, and had to hump all our gear into the showground, only to find that just as we were approaching the entrance, cars were being allowed to park on base about 10 metres fom it.

If you make the effort to get on base early don't you deserve the advantage of parking on base and having less distance to walk?

b1rdman
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri 10 Jul 2009, 2:56 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by b1rdman »

From what I've herad on base parking was opened up at 7.30 but it was luck of the draw whether you got on or not as cops were dividing up traffic equally

User avatar
LN Strike Eagle
UKAR Staff
Posts: 10657
Joined: Mon 21 Jul 2008, 3:29 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by LN Strike Eagle »

Johnhbailey wrote:Followed the signs through the lanes around the north of Lechlade. Hit the rear of the queue ( in said lanes, north of the A417 ) at 08:00, was out of the car and walking to the entrance at 09:10 - having been selected by plod for on-base parking.

That's the same way we arrived! Hit the queue maybe 5 - 10 minutes past 0800 at the latest, and we were parking the car on base as the Spanish F-18 was displaying. He took off when we were on the main road at the end of the runway.
"You really are an oafish philistine at times!"

ursa_major
Posts: 651
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 7:11 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by ursa_major »

LN Strike Eagle wrote:
Johnhbailey wrote:Followed the signs through the lanes around the north of Lechlade. Hit the rear of the queue ( in said lanes, north of the A417 ) at 08:00, was out of the car and walking to the entrance at 09:10 - having been selected by plod for on-base parking.

That's the same way we arrived! Hit the queue maybe 5 - 10 minutes past 0800 at the latest, and we were parking the car on base as the Spanish F-18 was displaying. He took off when we were on the main road at the end of the runway.


There were 2 routes through Lechlade - the first was signposted as an 'alternative route for cars & light vans' whereas the second, which went through the centre of Lechlade was signed as being for coaches etc too. This might explain the difference in experiences?.

User avatar
Wrexham Mackem
UKAR Staff
Posts: 2295
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 4:46 pm
Location: Farndon, Chester

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Wrexham Mackem »

Does anyone know why the on base parking was not used fr the early arrivals? we were directed to the red car park field, and had to hump all our gear into the showground, only to find that just as we were approaching the entrance, cars were being allowed to park on base about 10 metres fom it.


Yes, that happened as the 'early birders' got to the entrance, after a long cold queue and pretty long walk, the first cars in the normal car park were disembarking their passengers straight into the showground entrace. I'd still rather get there early and avoid any danger of queueing in the car though. I'm not very good at that :smile:
its time to kick the tyres and light the fires

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

andyxh558

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by andyxh558 »

Left home at 3.30 am and was inside, parked up and at the crowdline at 06.30. We got stuck for around 5 minutes and then just guided in and parked up by the A10s, Great!.... or so I thought as We decided to go over the fence to the campsite for something to eat, the distance was 15 metres as the crow flies or 3 miles as the astra flies :tongue: :tongue: :tongue:.

I wont be doing it again, kempsford next year!!!!!

User avatar
Batman3
Posts: 761
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 10:54 am
Location: Chippenham, Wiltshire

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Batman3 »

andyxh558 wrote:Left home at 3.30 am and was inside, parked up and at the crowdline at 06.30. We got stuck for around 5 minutes and then just guided in and parked up by the A10s, Great!.... or so I thought as We decided to go over the fence to the campsite for something to eat, the distance was 15 metres as the crow flies or 3 miles as the astra flies :tongue: :tongue: :tongue:.

I wont be doing it again, kempsford next year!!!!!


At the crowdline for 06:30?? :shock: how?

andyxh558

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by andyxh558 »

we had disabled badges due to my wife's disability. I was astounded myself!!!

User avatar
Rover75
Posts: 758
Joined: Sun 31 Aug 2008, 4:00 pm
Location: Norwich
Contact:

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Rover75 »

We left Norwich at 0200hrs & arrived in the Red early bird car park at 0625hrs, whilst we were queuing waiting for the gates to open, several disabled drivers were being directed from the car park to (I assume on station parking) over the road. Unfortunately they were being directed directly through the queues of waiting punters, which was amusing.
A lot of people were asking why the early arivals were not directed to on station parking.
Canon EOS 40D
Canon EOS 40D
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rover75

User avatar
DerekF
Posts: 4862
Joined: Sun 07 Sep 2008, 7:54 am
Location: Handforth, Cheshire, UK

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by DerekF »

On Saturday, I went in through the blue route from the Swindon direction and literally drove straight in to be parked up just before 7am. Joined a long, and ever increasing queue before the gates opened at 7.30am Took first static pic of KC-135 at 7.50am

On the way out I was in the car at 6.10pm and out of the car park just before 7pm. It seemed to be slow but it always does. Not helped by some miserable gits who just would not let anyone in. How they joined the queue I don't know. It took another half hour of slowish traffic to get to the Premier Inn at Blunsdon. Tucking in to burger and chips at 8.15pm - not too bad really.

pb643
Posts: 877
Joined: Mon 01 Sep 2008, 7:31 am

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by pb643 »

I've seen worse traffic in previous RIATs


However we are dealing with significantly less punters than RIAT at its busiest years, I seem to recall two days figures of around 400,000 at the most. I believe this year was meant to be capped at around 160,000. Probably less than Waddington this year.

With the addition of on base parking, in addition to the previously used fields, should have left greater flexibility to keep the traffic flowing and consequently should have been equally as good as any year since it returned to Fairford.

In my opinion, I think the traffic, like pretty much everything else connected with RIAT has become overly complex and over managed. I mean, queuing for 15-20min from the red car park for a bunch of adults to cross a road at a crossing, when there was virtually no traffic on the road.

Talk about nanny state!


Phil

User avatar
Danny
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sat 04 Apr 2009, 11:05 am
Location: Norwich, UK
Contact:

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Danny »

DerekF wrote:On Saturday, I went in through the blue route from the Swindon direction and literally drove straight in to be parked up just before 7am. Joined a long, and ever increasing queue before the gates opened at 7.30am


I was nearly in Swindon at the back of that queue. :grin:
"Can you believe it? Chelsea will just not let go in the Champions League!"

User avatar
Dollar99
Posts: 465
Joined: Fri 05 Sep 2008, 1:31 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Dollar99 »

Left Swindon at 07:07 this morning parked on base by 07:30!! Departed after the Vulcan and it took me almost as long to take off the wet clothing as it did to drive home. No problems that I saw :biggrin:

Johnhbailey
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue 14 Jul 2009, 2:46 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Johnhbailey »

ursa_major wrote:
LN Strike Eagle wrote:
Johnhbailey wrote:Followed the signs through the lanes around the north of Lechlade. Hit the rear of the queue ( in said lanes, north of the A417 ) at 08:00, was out of the car and walking to the entrance at 09:10 - having been selected by plod for on-base parking.

That's the same way we arrived! Hit the queue maybe 5 - 10 minutes past 0800 at the latest, and we were parking the car on base as the Spanish F-18 was displaying. He took off when we were on the main road at the end of the runway.


There were 2 routes through Lechlade - the first was signposted as an 'alternative route for cars & light vans' whereas the second, which went through the centre of Lechlade was signed as being for coaches etc too. This might explain the difference in experiences?.


There was no police presence at that turn to force you to take the 'cars and light vans' route; I just read the sign and thought that any route which didn't go through the centre of Lechlade sounded good to me. However I think LN Strike Eagle is saying he took exactly the same turn as me - while I'd love to be able to say that it's amazing how much difference 10 minutes can make, I can't help but think that something else must've changed to make such a large difference !

By the time the Spanish F-18 took off I'd gotten seated in the CSMA enclosure, and that was a good mile from the Red entrance.

User avatar
Senna_S
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed 13 May 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by Senna_S »

Dollar99 wrote:Left Swindon at 07:07 this morning parked on base by 07:30!! Departed after the Vulcan and it took me almost as long to take off the wet clothing as it did to drive home. No problems that I saw :biggrin:

Yep - I came in from Cirencester and left a bit later than I'd like (about 7:25). Cut through the lanes to join the green route which had a minor queue at that time and was probably parked up on the hard-standing about 7:50. Took about 10 mins to get through 'security' and was enjoying a bacon roll by 8:20. :tongue: Heard on the RIAT radio at about 11:30 that some people still stuck in traffic and expectation was that it would take another 2 hours to get in :shock:
Left the Jubilee Gardens straight after the Reds and queued in the car-park for about an hour. Seemed like there was about a 100 queues of cars, but no-one moving. As someone else said on this thread, no-one was directing traffic, so it was a bit of a free-for-all, with people driving over the grass to join another of the 100 queues. :loser:
Out of the car park got sent down the Cricklade road, but that was relatively free-flowing, and back home in about 20 minutes. :smile:
Thanks,
Simon.

User avatar
bigfatron
Posts: 918
Joined: Mon 06 Jul 2009, 11:40 am

Re: Traffic - A word of warning

Post by bigfatron »

We did the red route in on the Saturday, setting off from SW London at just after 6am. Took about 3 hours in the end including getting turned around at one point to do the alternate red route (which seemed to involve going back on yourself for a mile or so). On the plus side at least I was on base just as the Spanish F18 went up. Getting away was at least a bit better, hung around post-display to do the statics and didn't get back on the road until about 7:30-7:45ish. Took just under 2 hours to get back and at least it was moving for the most part.