Experience Some WWII History With This Informative Dambusters Helicopter Flight

  • Enjoy a 30-minute helicopter flight
  • Retrace the Dambusters’ famous training regime
  • Soar over the beautiful Peak District
  • Birds’ eye view of the twin dams
  • Pick out historic landmarks and monuments
  • Fly from Sheffield, South Yorkshire
  • £175 for a 30 minute flight!
Helicopter In Flight

Click Here To Book Your Flight With Wish.co.uk
Who are wish.co.uk?

World War II history buffs, take note. If you’re interested in seeing the very place where No. 617 Squadron, aka the ‘Dambusters’ carried out their UK training, now’s your chance. Don’t just drive there and squint through a pair of binoculars – see it like they did. With this Dambusters helicopter experience you’ll get to retrace the actual route of the famous squadron’s training run as they practised low-level flying in preparation for their daring raid. You’ll fly for up to 30 minutes hundreds of feet over the beautiful Peak District, working your way towards the Derwent Valley and over the twin dams. You can even hum the theme tune if you want.

This commemorative helicopter flight retraces the route that the Squadron took whilst training over the Peak District as they prepared for their mission in Germany.

You don’t need to be a war historian to know of the Dambusters. The event was daring in itself, but once Hollywood took notice, the story of Royal Air Force No. 617 Squadron soon became immortalised.

In May 1943, a swift and daring raid took place on German dams by No. 617 Squadron, who later became known as the ‘Dambusters’. The attack, codenamed Operation Chastise, intended to destroy various German powerplants and dams – and it did just that. The Squadron breached two major dams in Germany’s Ruhr Valley – the Möhne and Edersee dams, damaged the Sorpe dam, and destroyed a number of powerplants, factories and mines.

Over 60 years have passed since Operation Chastise, yet the raid is remembered as one of the key events of World War II. This commemorative helicopter flight retraces the route that the Squadron took whilst training over the Peak District as they prepared for their mission in Germany. Whether you’re a keen historian, war enthusiast, or you’re just going along to humour your dad, it’s impossible not to get caught up in the drama of this landmark moment in time.

So what can you expect from your Dambusters helicopter flight? Dams for one thing, but definitely no busting. Set off from Sheffield and fly over the fabulous Peak District, see Derwent Valley from above and view the twin dams – all of which provided the training ground for the pilots’ raid. You’ll have the chance to understand the skill and bravery of wartime pilots as they navigated specific routes and made best use of 1940s technology to pinpoint specific targets. It’s incredible to think that, strapped into their enormous Lancasters, they managed to navigate the route from a mere 60 feet above the ground.

There really isn’t much more to say other than DO IT. It’s a pretty momentous experience and the type that you won’t forget in a hurry. Or ever.

On the day you’ll first meet your pilot and undergo a briefing, which tells you what to expect and what not to do whilst you’re several hundred feet above the ground. We’d like to think that most of it is common sense – you know, don’t parachute out the door, don’t play TiddlyWinks with the pilot, etc. It’s also a chance to find out more about the Dambusters route, the helicopter, the landscape, and whatever else you want to ask. As for the flight itself, there isn’t usually a formal commentary – but most pilots are often happy to point out key landmarks or answer questions en route.

The time from engines-on to engines-off is around 30 minutes, so you’ll typically get around 25 minutes in the air. Bear in mind that you’ll need to allow additional time for the briefing, as well as actually finding the place and parking up – so allow extra time to make sure you arrive promptly. After all, you wouldn’t want to miss out just because you had a “should’ve gone to Specsavers” moment and drove to the wrong side of Sheffield.

You’ll be sharing the flight with a small number of other passengers, unless you book the whole craft. Flights take place on selected weekends from March through to October, sometimes during November too, so make sure you book well in advance to avoid disappointment.

As for participants, helicopter flights aren’t generally recommended for people who don’t like heights, so bear this in mind before you buy. Participants also need to be under 18 stone and no taller than 6’3”. The minimum age is usually six years old, and it’s standard practice for children to be accompanied by a paying adult.

Spectators are welcome to attend and can watch your take-off and landing from the airfield – however, if you plan to bring a number of friends and family members, do check with the airfield first to make sure they don’t have any restrictions on numbers. It is a working airfield after all, not a crèche.

Finally, remember that even though helicopters are pretty robust and versatile aircraft, in extreme weather conditions your flight may get postponed. Don’t worry, it will be rescheduled for another date which is good news for you. Trust us, you wouldn’t want to be hundreds of feet up while Mother Nature is doing her worst. It’s not fun.

You’ll normally take off from Owler Bar, on the edge of the Peak District just south of Sheffield. There are a number of pubs and cafes nearby so anyone left behind can head off for a tipple once they’ve waved you off.
No, you won’t be flying in a Lancaster bomber. These experiences take place in a helicopter, usually a modern Bell 206 Jet Ranger helicopter or similar. Most carry around four people so it’s ideal if you’re planning a family outing, or a nostalgic trip for your old buddies.

Some Jolly Good Q&As

What route does the Dambusters experience follow?
You’ll set off from Sheffield and follow the Squadron’s historic Derwent Valley training route, high above the lovely Peak District and over the twin dams. It’s pretty soul-stirring stuff.

Didn’t the actual raid take place in Germany?
Yes it did. And no, we’re not flying you to Germany. The Dambusters’ training regime took place in the Peak District, and this experience will cover the route that they took whilst preparing for the attack on German dams.

What else can we expect to see?
Remember Wuthering Heights? The scenery will look a bit like that. Lots of rolling hills and dales and craggy rock formations. You’ll be too high to spot Cathy or Heathcliff (or Kate Bush for that matter) but you should easily see Chatsworth House, the Mam Tor rock formations, and of course the dams themselves – Ladybower, Derwent and Howden.

Buy Your Vouchers

To be able to book your taster flight on a specific date and time you first need an experience day voucher (how it works). You can buy these from Wish.co.uk who sell vouchers for the following location:

  • Sheffield, South Yorkshire

£175 per person (5 minutes flight time)

Click Here To Book Your Flight With Wish.co.uk Right Now

Book your once-in-a-lifetime experience with Wish.co.uk. They are fanatical about offering top-notch customer service to all. They are thoroughly good chaps you know.