What to expect at first IWM Live event at Duxford

Published: 5:10 PM January 9, 2022 Updated: 5:43 PM January 9, 2022 Veterans and historic objects will be brought together with expert talks by curators and leading authors as Imperial War Museums launches its first ever IWM Live event at Duxford.

Tickets are now available for IWM Live, a new all-day event on Saturday, June 11, 2022. The day will bring together IWM’s collection, the expertise of the museum’s curators, book signings from leading historical authors, and the opportunity for visitors to engage with veterans of conflict.

American Air Museum

The American Air Museum at IWM Duxford, a Stirling Prize-nominated building and the home of aircraft and stories celebrating American aviation – Credit: IWM Events will take place at IWM Duxford and range from talks about iconic aircraft, such as the Lancaster, Vulcan, Spitfire and Mosquito, to demonstrations and presentations of some of the most compelling objects from the IWM collection. 

Avro 698 Vulcan B2.
/p
pThe Vulcan Restoration Trust will show visitors up close features of the aircraft

Avro 698 Vulcan B2. The Vulcan Restoration Trust will show visitors up close features of the aircraft in a session entitled ‘How to Survive a Vulcan Crash’ – Credit: (C) IWM 2010.20.3

Avro 683 Lancaster Mk X, on the airfield at IWM Duxford.

Avro 683 Lancaster Mk X, on the airfield at IWM Duxford. – Credit: (C) IWM 2010.20.5

These will offer the chance to handle objects, some of which will be presented to the public for the very first time. Emily Charles, curator at IWM and speaker at IWM Live, said: “We are so excited to showcase everything special about experiencing IWM live and in person with this event.

“In particular I’m looking forward to introducing audiences to stories of some of the real people who shaped life and culture in the UK when American forces came to Britain in the Second World War.

“IWM Live is a really exciting venture for us and there really is nowhere better to see history come to life than at this site which has seen some of the most dramatic days in 20th century conflict.”

Author Damien Lewis will be discussing his latest book, due for publication in May 2022, at IWM Live.

Author Damien Lewis will be discussing his latest book – due for publication in May 2022 – at IWM Live. – Credit: Supplied by IWM IWM organisers are thrilled to be joined by expert writers including Professor Richard Overy (The Dictators; Blood and Ruins: The Great Imperial War 1931-1945), Clare Mulley (The Women Who Flew For Hitler), Dr Helen Fry (Spymaster; The Walls Have Ears), Katja Hoyer (Blood and Iron), and Damien Lewis, who will be discussing and signing copies of his latest book published just weeks before IWM Live takes place.

Black GIs in Britain employed in manual labour.

Black GIs in Britain employed in manual labour.

IWM Curator Emily Charles will be talking on the history of Black Americans in Britain during the Second World War. – Credit: (C) IWM HU 33450 Alongside them, IWM’s own expert curators will be leading talks on topics including HMS Belfast and the Arctic Convoys, Black Americans in Britain during the Second World War, and stories of how IWM was founded in the midst of the First World War.

A Long Range Desert Group truck halted while its crew enjoy a midday break in the shade beneath the vehicle, July 1942.

A Long Range Desert Group truck halted while its crew enjoy a midday break in the shade beneath the vehicle, July 1942. IWM curator Rob Rumble will be using objects from IWM’s collection to discuss what patrols with this group would have been like. – Credit: (C) IWM HU 71344

Katja Hoyer, author of Blood and Iron: The Rise and Fall of the German Empire, said: “There couldn’t be a more apt place to meet existing and future readers. “The historical significance of Duxford makes it a fascinating venue to visit. “I’m delighted to be part of this exciting programme at IWM Live and share the stage with not just my fellow historians but with some of the museum’s fantastic collections.”

Historian Katja Hoyer, author of Blood and Iron, who will be speaking to audiences and signing books at IWM Live

Historian Katja Hoyer, author of Blood and Iron, who will be speaking to audiences and signing books at IWM Live – Credit: Supplied by IWM

There will also be the chance to hear about how IWM London’s recently opened new Second World War Galleries were designed.

IWM Duxford in Cambridgeshire is Europe’s largest air museum, with a fascinating history that dates back to the First World War.

Members of 19 Squadron at RAF Duxford, where they were based and flew from during the Battle of Britain.

Members of 19 Squadron at RAF Duxford, where they were based and flew from during the Battle of Britain.

The Duxford Story 1938-1940 will be the subject of events at IWM Live – Credit: (C) IWM HU 58237