1 days

From $315

Activity Level:


Come and see a legend at close quarters

There is no airplane more iconic than the Spitfire. Called by many the savior of the Free World, especially during the Battle of Britain, this sleek design is frequently seen at air shows around the world. This is your chance to get up close and personal with the fighter at one of the world’s leading Spitfire operators - and at the famous Battle of Britain fighter station, Biggin Hill.

We will study:

  • Design and development, discussing new research into the origins
  • The role of the Spitfire in the Battle of Britain
  • The fighting power of the Spitfire
  • The engineering of the wing design
  • The stories of the brave men who flew from RAF Biggin Hill

Where we’ll be:

There can be nowhere better to study the Spitfire than the former RAF Biggin Hill in the 80th year of the Battle of Britain. The facilities of the Heritage Hangar are world-class and afford a privileged access to Spitfires under maintenance, re-build and flying. The hangar would be conducted by one of the engineers who spends every day with these magnificent machines and he’ll be able to answer the most in-depth engineering questions.


Paul Beaver will lead the discussion on the Spitfire throughout the day, focusing on the study areas. The advantage of the Heritage Hangar is that much of the lectures can be illustrated with real examples from the engineering shop floor.

Tour Guide:

Paul Beaver is a well-known historian and broadcaster who continues to research the Spitfire. He spent six years flying Spitfires in six European countries. He regularly lectures on his experiences to lay and expert audiences, including at the Battle of Battle Bunker in Uxbridge. Paul has recently been appointed Honorary Group Captain of No 601 (County of London) Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, which flew Spitfires during and the immediately after the war.

Please Note:

The day is held in a working hangar, which can be noisy both inside and outside. Our lecture will also be given here and while the setting is unique, it can also be fairly loud at times and you may regularly hear or see aircraft taking off and landing. 

Tour highlights:

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Keeping you safe on your next tour

  • FREE 'Travel Safe' kits for every traveller
  • Self-drive options
  • Enhanced Health and Safety audits
  • Distanced seating on coaches
  • 'Get me home' service and private airport transfers
  • COVID protocols at our hotels, and aboard our cruise ships
  • Packed lunches and flexible dining options
  • Flexible balance payment date and COVID-friendly refund conditions
  • COVID-testing and training for tour staff
  • Constant monitoring and post-tour tracing


Meet your Experts

Colonel Paul Beaver

Andante Guide Lecturer

Paul Beaver is very much a hands-on historian with a pilot’s log book which includes the Spitfire, Harvard and Mustang.

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Spitfires in hangar (Photo by John Goodman)
Tour dates & prices
Tour Departure Tour ID Departure date Guided by Price Availability
3 May 2022 AXSP220503 3 May 2022 (Tuesday) Colonel Paul Beaver $315
(ex. flights)
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2 August 2022 AXSP220802 2 August 2022 (Tuesday) Colonel Paul Beaver $315
(ex. flights)
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20 September 2022 AXSP220920 20 September 2022 (Tuesday) Colonel Paul Beaver $315
(ex. flights)
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