Royal International Air Tattoo 2023


The Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT) stands as the largest military air show globally, annually drawing approximately 150,000 visitors across its three-day duration. In 2023, the event hosted a staggering 253 aircraft from 25 different countries, all made possible by the dedicated efforts of 1338 volunteers, contractors, military personnel, and staff.

The need for on-site accommodation was driven by a desire for convenience and to mitigate traffic congestion on show days, a recurring challenge due to the high volume of visitors.

In a testament to the dynamic nature of the event’s demands, an unexpected last-minute requirement for four cabins emerged, underlining the importance of adaptability and responsiveness.

  • Project name: The Royal International Air Tattoo 2023
  • Sector: Air Show
  • Location: RAF Fairford, Gloucester
  • Client: The Royal International Air Tattoo
  • Supplied by: Wernick Events
  • Accommodation type: Offices, Hospitality units, Male & female toilets, Showers, two-berth sleeper units, Ticket offices


To meet the client’s requirements, Matthew Bardwell (Events Manager), Adam Leadbeater (Head of Ground Operations) and Lawson Eadle (Ground Operations Project Coordinator) alongside their wider team had to collaborate from January 2023 until the end of the event in August.

The team faced several challenges, including unpredictable weather conditions that made the installation and de-rigging processes particularly tricky due to unstable ground. However, their experience and resourcefulness allowed them to overcome these obstacles and provide an effective solution.

The solutions provided by Wernick included a range of accommodation such as offices and hospitality units ranging from 10ft to 32ft. Male & female toilets, showers, 108 two-berth sleeper units and ticket offices were also provided. These units not only fulfilled the need for temporary living spaces but also served as functional workspaces for event management and staff.


What sets Wernick apart is its remarkable agility in responding to unforeseen requirements. Beyond addressing the last-minute need for additional office space, they orchestrated the installation of 132 cabins, alongside the other units, over an 8-day timeframe. This accomplishment demonstrates not just adaptability but the scale of work that was carried out and executed with precision.

The success of the Royal International Air Tattoo 2023 was a collaborative effort, with many unsung heroes working diligently behind the scenes. While Matt Bardwell’s expertise in managing the event site played a pivotal role, the contributions of others like Liam Muldoon (Managing Director), Terri Burbridge (Hire Controller), and the entire yard team were vital.

Matt Bardwell managed the site very well and the service we got was, and always is, of such a high standard. Accommodations were swiftly arranged, with even last-minute cabin needs met. Consistently excellent with their service quality, with support from the entire Wernick Events team.

Adam Leadbeater
Ground Operations Manager

Images from RIAT 2022