The best air shows to visit in 2021

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From aerial acrobatics to static displays, these aviation events will keep the whole family enthralled over the summer

The Royal International Air Tattoo might've been cancelled again this year, but there are lots of other similar events going ahead around the UK, meaning you can still get your fix of aviation-based fun.

Here, we've put together a list of air shows that you can attend over the next few months – along with ticket details – so that you can plan your calendar and start looking forward to some great days out. 

Note: All the information in this article is correct at the time of publishing, but you are advised to check the latest government guidance and make sure an event is still going ahead before you travel. It is also recommended that you book ahead to avoid disappointment. 

Air shows in July 

17 July 

Flying For Fun Evening Drive-In Display

The Shuttleworth Collection, Old Warden Aerodrome, nr Biggleswade, Bedfordshire SG18 9EP

The Shuttleworth Collection comprises around 40 airworthy planes, from pioneering aircraft to World War II fighters. The collection is usually on display in its eight hangars. However, for these award-winning drive-in events, visitors park in their own box with enough room to set up a picnic alongside, and enjoy the displays, with commentary available through their FM radio. Refreshments are also available to purchase. If it’s a very special occasion, you can book a flight in a 1940s T6 Harvard for £399. One for the bucket list. 

Prices from £5–£20, depending on vehicle size or if you are arriving on foot, bicycle or motorcycle. Individual tickets also required – adults £39, children free. 

17 July 

Battle Proms

Hatfield House, Hertforshire, AL9 5NQ 

Battle Proms

If you like to mix your aviation acrobatics with classical music and a picnic, then you’re in luck. This long-running series is back with two hours of orchestral performance, a parachute jump by the Red Devils, a Spitfire display, fireworks and more, all in the stately home setting of Hatfield House. 

Adults £48, children £21, under-fives free 

21 July 

Peterhead Scottish Week Flying Display

Peterhead Bay, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, AB42 1UB

If you’re near Peterhead Bay on 21 July, look up at 7pm and you might see the RAF Red Arrows display team overhead, as part of Peterhead Scottish Week, a week-long programme of summer events and celebrations. Commentary on the Red Arrows display will be broadcast on Waves Radio. 

24 & 25 July

Vintage Aircraft Club Fly-in Weekend

Bodmin Airfield, Cornwall, PL30 4BU 

Cornwall Flying Club hosts this event for the Vintage Aircraft Club, but all are welcome to come and enjoy the shows throughout the weekend. Entertainment on the Saturday evening is Flights of Fancy in one of the hangars – a night of music and poetry. 

Tickets for Flights of Fancy are £8 on the door

24 & 25 July

Duxford Summer Air Show

Duxford, Cambridgeshire CB22 4QR

Best air shows military planes flying

Photo: Tim Felce / Wikimedia Commons

Brought to you by Imperial War Museum Duxford, this weekend promises high-octane entertainment, with a RAF Typhoon roaring through the skies, a show from the RAF Red Arrows display team, aerobatics from the Wingwalkers, an appearance from The Blades Aerobatic Team, a parachute display and lots more.

Adults £42.50, children £14.25, under-fives free 

31 July & 1 August

Old Buckenham Air Show

Old Buckenham, Norfolk NR17 1PU

Even though it's been scaled down from the planned three days to two, the Old Buckenham Air Show promises an exciting combination of military and civilian aircraft (including Sally B, star of Hollywood movie Memphis Belle); military and civilian vehicles; tank rides; historical reenactors; helicopter rides and other flying experiences. 

Adults £20, children aged 12-16 £16, under-12s free (though they will still require a ticket). Weekend camping packages are also available.

Air shows in August

1 August 

Need for Speed Family Airshow

The Shuttleworth Collection, Old Warden Aerodrome, nr Biggleswade, Bedfordshire SG18 9EP

Child with binoculars

As the name suggests, this family favourite focuses on speed, with a large number of aircraft on the ground and in the air, a vehicle parade and much more. 

Prices from £5–£20 depending on vehicle size or if you are arriving on foot, bicycle or motorcycle. Individual tickets also required – adults £39, children free. 

4, 11 & 19 August, 9 October

Duxford Flying Days

Duxford, Cambridgeshire CB22 4QR

In addition to its massive air shows, Duxford hosts themed days that give visitors the chance to enjoy pop-up displays and experiences, explore the museum or just sit back and admire the aerial choreography. 

Adults £28.50, children aged 5–14 £14.25, under-fives free 

5 August 

Historic Helicopters Open Day

Chard Equestrian, Whitehouse Farm, Cricket St Thomas, Somerset TA20 4BP

An event to celebrate the restoration and return to flight of ex-RAF helicopter Sea King G-SEAK, Historic Helicopters Open Day will play host to the world’s only airworthy former RAF Westland Whirlwind HAR10, a Westland Wessex 5, helicopters from the stage and screen, as well as a selection of other aircraft. 

Adults £25, children aged 9–16 £15, families (2 adults and 2 children under 16) £65, under-eights and military, NHS and police workers free.

7 August

East Kirkby Airshow

Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre, East Kirkby, Lincolnshire, PE23 4DE

Air show silhouette

Enjoy three hours of air displays and see inside the cockpit of a Lancaster. There will also be reenactors, taxi runs in the Lancaster, stalls, vintage cars, a performance by the Military Wives choir and more, all adding up to a super day out. All funds raised go towards the restoration of the centre’s Lancaster NX611. 

Adults £21, children aged 6–15 £6, under-sixes free 

7 August 

Classic Car Show and Vintage Fly-in

Popham Airfield, Coxford Down, Winchester SO21 3BD

There will be dozens of vintage cars and aircraft to see at this show, along with an autojumble and craft stalls. 

Adults £8, children aged 4-16 £5, concessions £6 (plus booking fees) 

7 & 8 August

Cardiff Airport Charity Fly-in

Cardiff Airport, Vale of Glamorgan, CF62 3BD

This event in aid of Wales Air Ambulance will see a wide variety of vintage aircraft touching down into Cardiff Airport. Check out the website to see a list of the planes taking part and the timings for when they’ll be making their landings. 

7 & 8 August

Combined Ops

Headcorn Airfield, nr Maidstone, Kent TN27 9HX

This event will feature a range of modern and vintage aircraft and military vehicles, living history reenactors, stalls, food, kids’ entertainment and more. Some of the special things to see at the event include a Douglas C-47 Skytrain, a Supermarine Spitfire and the Pathfinder Parachute Group. 

Adults £12, children £7. Weekend camping tickets are also available 

26 & 27 August 

Clacton 150 Flypast

West Greensward, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex CO15 1NW

This event, to mark Clacton's 150th anniversary, will not feature any stalls or entertainment on the ground, but there will be thrilling flypasts by the Red Arrows, along with a Battle of Britain memorial flight. 

27 August 

Sidmouth Air Display

Sidmouth, Devon EX2 4DR 

Yellow stunt plane

Once part of the Sidmouth Regatta but deemed big enough for its own event, this day out will feature displays by the Red Arrows and a Dakota (BBMF). 

There is no entry fee for this event

28 August 

Wings and Wheels

Henstridge Airfield, Henstridge Marsh, Somerset BA8 0TA

First staged over 20 years ago, this event has a reputation for creating a unique atmosphere with the sounds of vintage and classic aircraft, the shine of classic car chrome, food and trade stalls. If you’d like to take your own classic car to display, entry is by donation on arrival. 

Adults £5, under-16s free 

29 August 

Little Gransden Air and Car Show

Fullers Hill Farm, Little Gransden, Cambridgeshire SG19 3BP

Enjoy three hours of seeing aircraft take to the skies, including early biplanes, WWII warbirds and aerobatics teams. On the ground, you'll find vintage, veteran and classic vehicles, large-scale model aircraft, a bar, food and live music from local band Junkyard Preachers. All funds raised will go to Children in Need and local charities. 

Adults from £20, under-16s from £8 

Air shows in September

2–5 September

Bournemouth Air Festival

Bournemouth, Dorset BH1 3AF

Bournemouth air show

Photo: Mike Searle / Wikimedia Commons

One of the biggest free air shows in Europe, this four-day festival will feature displays from the Red Arrows, Typhoons and Battle of Britain aircraft, as well as fireworks and flares released by parachutists. 

Boundless will have an exclusive members' area at this festival, offering loads of great benefits including a viewing balcony, a discounted bar, free hot drinks and much more – so why not come and join us. To register your interest, please visit our dedicated Bournemouth Air Festival page.

3–5 September 

The Victory Show

Foxlands Farm, Cosby, Leicestershire LE9 1SG

A tribute to World War II, this show will feature flying and static aircraft from the period and modern times, as well as 1940s vehicles, farm machinery, tanks and a huge army encampment. A 1940s-themed dinner dance is another show highlight, with music from swing and Big Band favourites. 

Adults £20, under-16s £10, children aged two and under free

11 September 

Air and Country Show

Abingdon Airfield, Oxfordshire OX13 6JG

This show provides the chance to see up to 70 types of aircraft, as well as classic and vintage vehicles, live music, local crafts and more. 

Adults £19, children aged 5–15 £5, under-fives free 

18 & 19 September

Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show

Duxford, Cambridgeshire CB22 4QR

Immerse yourself in the summer of 1940, when the Spitfire ruled the skies, bringing hope to the British Isles. Get up close to various military aircraft before they take to the skies for a four-hour display. Outfits from the 1940s are strongly encouraged to help you get into the Blitz spirit! 

The organisers are awaiting further confirmation on restrictions before putting tickets on sale, so check the website for the latest details.

18 & 19 September 

Sywell Classic: Pistons and Props

Sywell Aerodrome, Northamptonshire NN6 0BN

Classic planes will be just part of the fun at this family weekend that also includes iconic F1 cars, hot rods, dragsters, motorcycles, live music, a vintage fun fair and a shopping village.

Adult day tickets from £18, weekend tickets from £30, under-15s free. Weekend camping also available

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Photos: Getty Images, unless otherwise stated

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