What are you planning? Where shall we go?
[From briefing for the guide teams volunteers at the museum this morning]

Operations will be very much as during last autumn's 'relaxation of lockdown', ie

1300-1600 only
limited seating and menu in cafe, but picnic tables available by airside fence
continuing precautions: distancing, face coverings, T&T check-in
(NHS App barcodes displayed in various places)
cockpits within hangar, Trident, Vulcan not open

Most exhibits are the same and in the same places still

From weekend 26-27 June, unless HMG Guidance changes, we hope to be able to revert to 'normal' (pre-Covid) conditions; ie 1000-1600, fuller cafe menu, more seating, ..


Airport management has informed us that they intend, starting soon and to be completed this year, to erect a 2.4m high mesh fence between the assigned museum areas and 'airside' areas. We have asked but have not yet been told whether airside access can continue during these works, and how (if at all :roll: ) it will be possible when the works are complete. We hope there will be incorporated into the fence some sort of adequately securable gate (pedestrian or, ideally, wingspan-wide!), with the museum Duty Manager able and authorised to open it for airside visitor arrivals; and, if necessary to move whole aircraft in and out.

Also, it looks as if Taxiway R and the museum airside parking area has not been mown since the pre-Christmas lockdown. The 'R1' Holding Point sign is barely visible through the grass from the 'picnic tables mound'! Looks like a 'tundra tyres' surface at the moment ..

So, it might be prudent (and even helpful to the museum :wink: ) for anyone hoping to fly in to visit at a weekend, or even just to fly in to Staverton, to ask when calling PPR whether Taxiway R and the apron have been mown recently. I assume they're still in the AIP ..

Anyway, we hope to see Forumites again very soon. Hereunder is a photo of the airside grass this morning, and of a new caption board showing some of the 'coming soon' attractions on which the restoration team have been working when permitted under 'workplace' guidance:


Very gratifying footfalls over the weekend given the limited hours :) No sign yet either of the taxiway/apron being mown nor of the start of the construction of the new airside fence. Interested to hear whether anyone calling for PPR has also asked about the taxiway.

Quite a few visitors were, however, surprised (and a very few slightly miffed :? ) that we were still doing T&T registration* for all visitors of 14 or over. Forumites planning to visit - by road or air - may care to note ..

Not much SEP flying going on, probably because of the wind.

[*as required both by PHE 'guidance' for an 'indoor attraction' and for continuing Visit England accreditation (which requires compliance with PHE!). Both PHE and VE have told us that we are liable for 'spot checks' by 'secret shoppers' :roll: We have the NHS T&T App barcodes up in various places, but for visitors who cannot use it (who may have no mobile 'phone, or who have not downloaded the App, or who have deleted it!) we have to ask them to fill in forms which we have printed. This can cause delays at the Welcome desk, which in turn (because of 'distancing') can generate queues back out of the door if there's a rush of arrivals. We've had to roster an extra volunteer outside the outer doors to 'marshal' the visitor queue]
Two fly-ins yesterday :)

We also had a 'secret shopper' visit from VisitEngland, checking on our Covid precautions as well as the usual criteria for continued Accreditation. We 'passed with flying colours' according to instant feedback :thumright:
2Donkeys, MachFlyer liked this
Just had the first TripAdvisor visitor review since reopening, bringing us to 600 since opening ~8 years ago, and another 5* :) This gives 80% 5*, 97% 4-5*, but still #2 among 'local attractions' according to TripAdvisor's opaque algorithm. Gloucester Cathedral, with >3,500 reviews but slightly lower * averages, is still #1 - but, as we like to say, they had 1,000 years' headstart .. :wink:

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attractio ... gland.html

Taxiway R and museum apron had been remown, but were again looking a bit long last weekend, so it might still be prudent to ask about them when calling for PPR if planning a fly-in visit. We are still hoping to reopen fully (longer hours, cockpits open, fuller cafe menu) on Saturday 26 June.
johnm liked this