London Biggin Hill Airport (BQH/EGKB) is located almost 20km southeast of the city centre of London. While the airport was opened in 1917 and thus home to military operations in both world wars, today it is only used as hub for private/sport aircraft after the RAF ended all operations here in 1992. During a visit you may see plenty business travellers or VIPs using anything from Cessna 510 up to Global 7500 or a helicopter using BQH to get to/from London – one of the major airports for business and private travels in Greater London. The airport is opened from 06:30 to 23:00 on weekdays and from 08:00 to 22:00 on weekends/public holidays. For more info visit their website
There is Heritage Hangar which is open for tours and spitfire flights. The hangar tour/museum visit is pricy but can be done. For more info visit their Website
The Biggin Hill Memorial museum has a replica/mock up Spitfire and Hurricane outside of it in the car park on stands. The parking lot is open to the public and can be accessed at any time without paying to enter the museum. The gate to walk through is slightly up the road.
Written by Severin Hackenberger in cooperation with Ryan Fenn and Tim Lowe. Last Update: 2021
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| (4 votes, average: 4.50 out of 5)
|03/21||1802m / 5912ft|
|Ladder||Useful and recommended to be part of your equipment, however leave it down as long as possible to avoid problems! But they are accepted here.|
|Car/Public Transport||Car not really needed as the bus serves all spots here quite well and frequent.|
|Drinks/Food||Enough stores/shops/pubs in Biggin Hill itself in the southeast.|
|Hotels||Very few around, none of them are special spotter spots.|
|Season||Winter has nicer light and less haze, but worse weather and less traffic. We recommend summer.|
|Security||Spotting here is encouraged, but try to keep a low profile and to attract as little attention as possible. VIPs/Business guests do not like to be photographed, so do not shoot during boarding!|
|03/21||Single runway operations depending on wind/destination. However, they always try to minimize loss of time with flying/taxiing, this leads to weird runway operations. A plane can land on 21 while another departs just seconds later on 03. Keep this in mind: Main direction of arrivals is 21, main direction of departures in 03. This is only a simple rules, not every plane has to follow this ideal.|
|Spot #1 – Field – 21 + heavy 03 Movements|
|WHERE||Park at the public parking for the “Leaves Green Common”, a park along Ashmore Ln. Park your car there and cross the A233, continue a bit south and then keep left. Cross the forestline north of the houses as marked on the map, head to the fence over the field and just search your favourite position along the fence. Keep in mind that you should not go up too much towards the ramp as security will send you away then.
There is a bus stop at the A233.
|WHAT||This spot offers nice views onto the northern part of the runway thus all 21 as well as heavy 03 movements.|
|TIME||Early afternoon till sunset.|
|MISC.||Ladder may be required to avoid fence blur, but be careful not to leave it up all time and not to go to far up the fence towards the ramp in the south as security will take action and may move you back down then. Their fine with ladders though in general, but try to avoid attention. Haze may be an issue on hot summer days.|
Global short final = 310mm
|Spot #2 – A233 – Signature Ramp + 03 Movements|
|WHERE||Spot is located along the Main Rd/A233 just west of the runway axis on a grass pitch. Easiest is to park your car at spot #3 and walk over here or to take the bus to “Main Road / SaltBox Hill”.|
|WHAT||Nice view onto the signature ramp behind as well as all runway 03 movements and taxiway H in front.
For runway movements go to Spot B, for taxiway Hotel holding short of 03 to spot A.
|TIME||Noon till sunset roughly.|
|MISC.||1-2 step ladder may be useful for ground shots but not really needed as the fence is not too high and tight either. Haze on the ramp may be an issue on hot days.|
|Spot #3 – Lookout Café – Ramp + 03 movements|
|WHERE||+++ Currently the Lookout Cafe is a COVID-19 testing center for the local area and is closed to the public. It will re-open soon but no confirmed date. +++
This spot is located around the famous Lookout Café in the airport’s south. Either take place on their terrace, order something and shoot from the fence or take some pictures outside the facility along the fence around the ramp west of it. Spot can easily reached by car (access via Maitland View from the east and parking just in front) or public transport as there are many bus stops around: e.g. just south of the spot is “Main Road / Sunningvale Avenue (Stop B)”
|WHAT||From here you can see the ramp in front (mostly small sports or small business aircraft) as well as all 03 movements – if the view is not blocked by parking aircraft.|
|TIME||Depends on the aircraft’ angle, but best around the morning till later noon.|
|MISC.||Limited time due to cafe hours and how busy it is – you may be sent if you do not consume anything for longer time. Haze by parked aircraft can be an issue.
When standing outside of the café a 1-2 step ladder may be useful for ground shots but not really needed as the fence is not too high and tight either.
Hi, I’m travelling up by car on Monday for a few hours from ramsgate, can I still park in the lookout cafe car park to view the aircraft or is that closed aswell thanks in advance
I want to see the red arrows on Sunday at Biggin Hill with my little boy and think viewpoint 2 is best, can you park in the airport and then walk around?
If the red arrows didn’t fly off from runway 03 you would still be able to see them the other side of the runway right?