Daedalus D-Day 80 show descends into "poor behaviour" as volunteers spat at amid delays to get in

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A D-Day event to honour veterans descended into “poor behaviour” including volunteers being spat at as frustrated visitors suffered “extreme delays” in getting in.

Daedalus D-Day 80 show at the former airfield HMS Daedalus. Pic: Keith Woodland

Daedalus D-Day 80 show at the former airfield HMS Daedalus. Pic: Keith Woodland
Daedalus D-Day 80 show at the former airfield HMS Daedalus. Pic: Keith Woodland | Keith Woodland/K Woodland Photog

The first day of the Daedalus D-Day 80 show at the former airfield HMS Daedalus, Lee-on-the-Solent, turned into a nightmare for some as thousands of people flocked to get in around midday. Long queues and lengthy traffic delays in the area led to frustrations spilling over.

Event organisers said over 9,300 people went to the event and “enjoyed the first day” which was an “amazing day with some once-in-a-lifetime memories and some amazing aircraft”. The Red Arrows were the pick of the show for many people.

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However, organisers were forced to release a statement on social media to defend themselves from criticism. It read: “We know there were problems with traffic and queues. In essence around 5,000 people all tried to arrive at the event at 12 o'clock and this led to extreme delays. 

“We are very sorry to those affected and frustrated and the minority who found the event unsuitable as a result and chose to go home. However poor behaviour, including spitting at our hardworking volunteer team, is never acceptable.

“Lessons have been learnt. We have taken steps to streamline the entrance procedures to minimise congestion including opening up a second entrance for pre-paid ticket holders once on site. But some delays at peak times are unavoidable at a busy event. 

“No one who had bought tickets was willfully turned away, however when the car park reached capacity we had to fill spaces as they became available. Thank you all for your support. If you have constructive suggestions for how we can do better we always want to hear them. Please send feedback, requests and comments to [email protected].”

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Organisers said there were no problems today (Sunday) with lessons learned. A social media statement said: “Learning a hard lesson from yesterday...event car parking is for those pre-booked only.

“Please do not try to come to the site unless you have pre-booked. You are welcome to walk to the site and get entry tickets on the gate. A second ticket entry has been opened for advanced ticket holders only to try to cut down on queue times for entry.

“Thanks for your support and understanding. It's going to be another great day. See you soon.”

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