Masters of The Air Tuesday Tours
To coincide with the release of the Apple TV+ World War II drama 'Masters of the Air', in collaboration with Bury St Edmunds…
Bury St Edmunds Guildhall, Guildhall Street, Bury St Edmunds IP33 1PR
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- 12th March 3:30pm - 13th February 5:00pm
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About this event
Friday January 26, 2024 sees the release of the Apple TV+ World War II drama Masters of the Air. Made by Band of Brothers and The Pacific producers Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, the nine-episode mini-series will focus on the courage and sacrifice of the US Eighth Air Force in the East of England during WWII.
To coincide with its release, in collaboration with Bury St Edmunds Guildhall, we have created a new guided walk on Bury St Edmunds in WWII.
The 60-minute walk will bring to life those Bury buildings and places which contributed to the war effort or helped raise the morale of allied servicemen and women during those dark days. It will end with a 30-minute visit to the Guildhall, to see the only surviving Royal Observer Corps Operations Room in the country, where specialist guides will describe its vital role in Britain’s air defence and the many lives it saved.
Walks will take place on Tuesday, 13 February and Tuesday, 12 March, and will start at 3.30pm from Bury St Edmunds Guildhall in Guildhall Street IP33 1PR (what3words///redeeming.reverses.readings).
Tours are in English and are suitable for all ages and abilities. Please let us know beforehand if you have any special access requirements. We regret that we cannot accept dogs (apart from assistance dogs) on our tours.
Adults £12, U-18s £6, U-5s free.
Advance booking essential. Click on the Book Tickets button above to book.
About the Venue
Secrets, stories and scandals are yours for the asking on the daily official historic walking tour of Bury St Edmunds.
This 90-minute tour of the historic centre of Bury St Edmunds includes the Abbey Gate, the Abbey Gardens and Abbey Ruins, the statue of St Edmund, St Edmundsbury Cathedral, St Mary’s Churchyard, Church Walks, Guildhall Street, Hatter Street, Abbeygate Street and the main market area.
Find out about the legend of St Edmund and the wolf, Bury St Edmunds’ connections to the Magna Carta, where Charles Dickens stayed, and the final resting place of a French Queen and Henry VIII’s beloved sister. Hear about the story of the great Abbey - once one of Europe’s most important pilgrimage sites whilst visiting the ruins and see the oldest Norman building in the country and the second oldest building in England.
The history of Bury St Edmunds stretches back over a thousand years starting with the martyrdom of Edmund, Anglo Saxon King and the original Patron Saint of England. Later came the establishment of the Benedictine Abbey dedicated to St Edmund, which became a major focus of pilgrimage in the Middle Ages. With Medieval, Georgian and Norman architecture, a visit to Bury St Edmunds is like taking a trip through time.
The Bury St Edmunds Tour Guides are all green or blue badge registered having completed their training with the National Institute of Tour Guiding. With years of experience and with a love of Bury St Edmunds, its history and people and a great sense of humour, the tour guides will ensure you see the best that Bury St Edmunds has to offer.
Between April and October guided walking tours of Historic Bury St Edmunds (90 minutes) run daily at 2pm. Additionally in August there is a daily tour at 11am.
Tours must be booked online in advance at the website above.
Tours cost £7.50 per person, Under 18s £4, Under 5s FREE, Family of four (max 2 adults) £20. We recommend parking at the long stay car park at Ram Meadow.
To manage social distance requirements the tour guides will now only accept online bookings, they have smaller group sizes and have modified their routes.
Visiting in Autumn or Winter? Then you'll love the Ghostly and Macabre Tours! Murder, executions, plague, riots, witchcraft and sightings of ghostly figures, the Bury St Edmunds Tour Guides take you on a journey around our haunted town.
Bespoke and Group Tours
The Bury St Edmunds Tour Guides also offer an extensive range of over 20 Themed Tours that can be pre-booked for groups and schools. All group, themed and ghost tours must be pre-booked and tickets are available from The Apex box office on Charter Square in the arc shopping centre. For information on the group tours and to book, contact The Apex box office on 01284 758130.
About the Venue
The earliest written mention of the Guildhall is in 1279, when the Bury St Edmunds Chronicle recorded the arrival of two visiting Lords. Recent archaeological discoveries suggest the building is much older, possibly dating to the mid-1100s.
It was built to host the local Guildhall Merchant, a group that oversaw all the business of the town, which was then at the heart of the lucrative wool trade. As a centre of civic power, the Guildhall became a bitter rival of the powerful Abbey of St Edmund and was a focal point for the town’s own peasants’ revolt in the 1300s - when a group of monks were held hostage within its secure walls.
The great and the good who ran the Guildhall used their wealth and influence to fight for the rights of the town’s ordinary citizens. They delivered justice in the Courtroom, turned the Tudor Kitchen into a soup kitchen in times of need, and offered the Banqueting Hall as a meeting space for the most important discussions of the day – including the fight to abolish the slave trade.
The Guildhall was also home to a group of remarkable, but unsung, local heroes, who helped change the course of the Second World War. The Royal Observer Corps (ROC) was a civil defence organisation which tracked aircraft movements above the skies of Britain. Their information was sent to RAF Fighter Command and helped to save thousands of lives. The Guildhall’s ROC Operations Room is the only surviving one of its kind in the world – a small space with an incredible story to tell.
Book a Private Tour
Join us on a journey through the Guildhall’s remarkable 800-year history on one of our guided tours.
Tickets are £7.50 per person. Minimum group size is 2 people. Children under 12 go free.
Please give at least 10 days’ notice when booking a tour. If you are not able to do this, we will do our best to schedule your visit at a convenient date and time.
ROC Operations Room Open Days
Discover the stories of the remarkable people who worked in the Ops Room on free open days throughout the year.
We also offer a range of cultural events including exhibitions, talks, concerts, and workshops. To find out more about our programme of events, venue hire, or private tours please visit our website.
Opening times: Office opening hours are Monday to Friday, 10am - 4pm. The venue is open to the public during scheduled events only, which will be advertised on our website.