Posts Tagged ‘April’

Newark Air Museum ATC Plane Build Competition

Wednesday, April 29th, 2020

ATC Plane Build Competition

Prompted by a tweet from 2195 Squadron Long Eaton Royal Air Force Cadets the Newark Air Museum has decided to re-work our build a model plane competition from the Radio Nottingham Big Day In event last weekend.

The museum is now going to try to reach out to Air Training Corps (ATC) Squadrons and cadets across the country to ask them to build their favourite museum aircraft or helicopter out of from recycled materials such as paper, cardboard, loo rolls, sticky back plastic etc.

Once it’s completed entrants will need to take a picture of the finished model and get their ATC Squadron to tweet it on the museum’s Twitter timeline @NewarkAirMus using the hash tag #NAMplaneBuildATC

The competition will close at 5pm on Saturday 16th May 2020; when the museum will then pick its favourite models.

As an incentive the museum is providing prizes of two FREE museum visits (for when it re-opens) for the ATC Squadrons that produces the best design, for up to 20 cadets, officers and civilian instructors per Squadron.

As an added incentive the museum has also add a prize of two £30 vouchers to spend in the Museum Shop for the Cadets that produce the winning design.

The museum would also like to say thank you to 2195 Sqn Long Eaton Royal Air Force Air Cadets for allowing them to use their photo!

www.newarkairmuseum.org

National Military Service Museums join forces to bring nation together (at home) in Virtual VE Day Festival

Tuesday, April 28th, 2020

VE Day Celebration

•  Tri-service museums host Virtual VE Day 75 Festival from 7-9 May 2020
•  Joint Command? Debunking the myths behind the Navy, Army and Air Force roles as they vied for victory 75 years ago
•  Free virtual events bring WW2 to life, for the nation at home

Tuesday, 28 April 2020 – The three historical institutions of the British Armed Forces invite the public to ‘stand with your services’ to celebrate 75 years since VE Day on Friday 8 May. The National Museum of the Royal Navy, National Army Museum and Royal Air Force Museum are hosting their first tri-service celebration with the Virtual VE Day 75 Festival taking place online from Thursday 7 May to Saturday 9 May 2020, inclusive.

In a way that the British do so well, the three museums of the Armed Forces will keep calm and carry on with their Virtual VE Day 75 Festival to replace individual pre-Covid ambitions for marking this important anniversary. The service museums encourage members of the public to come together, while staying at home, in conjunction with the government’s communications to ‘stay home and save lives’.

The virtual programme kicks off on Thursday 7 May, the date of Germany’s unconditional surrender, with ‘Vying for Victory: Britain’s Navy, Army and Air Force in Myth and Memory’. Chaired by historian and broadcaster, James Holland, this will see each museum fight their corner, discussing the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force’s respective roles during the closing stages of the Second World War. This free event will be broadcast on YouTube at 5pm on Thursday 7 May, followed by a live Q&A on CrowdCast at 7pm.

The Second World War was the first major conflict which saw the implementation of a truly joint operations and command. This involved three different services with three different sets of traditions, cultures and experiences. Leading military historians, Matthew Sheldon (National Museum of the Royal Navy); Dr Peter Johnson (National Army Museum) and Dr Harry Raffal (Royal Air Force Museum); will explore how each of the services has cemented its own contribution in myth, tradition and popular culture and question the accuracy of that representation via the highs and lows of this unique working relationship.

On Friday 8 May, members of the public are invited to get their gardens and homes decorated and prepare for a VE Day party. Enjoy learning about life on the Home Front, get thrifty with a Make Do and Mend session, and learn how to dig for victory. Discover some of the experiences of Women in War with poignant stories from the each of the museums’ archives. Such as that from Dorrie Thomas, who served as a Telegraphist in the Women’s Royal Navy Service and sent news of peace in Europe to members of the British Naval Fleet.

Historian and author, James Holland will speak to the National Army Museum’s Dr Peter Johnston at 2pm in a live webinar discussing ‘Why the Allies Won’, just before the nation tunes into the BBC to hear Churchill’s famous VE Day broadcast at 3pm. Victory celebrations commence at 4pm with a live Swing Dance Class followed by a sing-along concert with the Bluebird Belles.

Saturday 9 May brings living history to living rooms with reenactors sharing stories from real service personnel during the Second World War. Dr Peter Johnston takes a live webinar with historian Dr Jonathan Fennell on ‘Fighting the People’s War’, and an immersive walk-through of HMS Alliance will provide an insight into the extraordinary self-isolation experience of submariners as the rest of Europe celebrated.

Defence Minister Baroness Goldie said, “As plans for VE Day 75 have been forced to change hugely due to the pandemic, this imaginative and innovative virtual festival will provide a much-needed distraction in these uncertain times. This is a chance to rediscover the Second World War and will be a poignant reminder for us all of the sacrifice our Armed Forces made in honour of King and country.

“The cooperation of these three historic institutions is a fantastic achievement and will ensure that all generations are aware of the importance of VE Day and the unforgettable impact of events which took place 75 years ago.”

The museums are encouraging those joining to share pictures on social media with the hashtag #StandWithYourServices

www.rafmuseum.org

Yellow Sun Tail Cone Project at Newark

Wednesday, April 15th, 2020

Vulcan Yellow Sun

In autumn 2019, Philip Wardell, a volunteer at the Newark Air Museum (NAM) started work on the challenging task of constructing a replica tail cone for a Yellow Sun nuclear weapon casing.

The Yellow Sun was the first British operational high-yield strategic nuclear weapon. This particular casing has been on long term loan at Newark from the RAF Museum Reserve Collection at RAF Stafford since April 2012 and has been displayed on a Yellow Sun weapon trolley that was already part of the NAM collection.

The first sign of work on the project, was when a set of concentric wooden formers were first cut in the museum’s on-site workshop in October 2019. Since then, the replica tail cone has grown steadily in size and detail; often attracting lots of ribald comments from other museum volunteers.

A trial fitting of the replica tail cone to the weapon casing took place in mid-November, using the original fixing points on the casing to secure the tail cone in place. Once this fixing concept and sizing were proven work proceeded over the winter on riveting the metal coverings and tail fins in place.

The final fixing and repainting session for the tail cone took place just before the museum closed for the Covid-19 lockdown, and it now awaits inspection by visitors when the museum is allowed to reopen.

Phil’s original aim was to have the project completed in time for the Cold War Call Up event that was scheduled to take place in mid-May. Whilst this event was sadly cancelled, Phil completed the project ahead of schedule. It is understood that he may be undertaking a similar construction project next winter, to build a replica tail cone for the V-1 Flying Bomb (Doodlebug) remains that are displayed in Hangar 1 at the museum’s site in north eastern Nottinghamshire.

www.newarkairmuseum.org

Cockpit-Fest 2020 and Aeroboot Postponed

Wednesday, April 8th, 2020

Newark Cockpit Fest 2020

Yesterday morning (07.04.20) to help some international participants not lose money on travel arrangements; we have taken a decision to postpone the Cockpit-Fest 2020 and Aeroboot event in June.

This two-day event was due to take place on 20 & 21 June, 2020.

One possibility that we are looking at is to re-arrange these combined events for Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th August, 2020.

At the moment this is not a firm date and a lot will still depend on when the current lockdown arrangements are lifted. However, we would welcome your thoughts and feedback via the usual communication routes on here or social media

We are sorry for any inconvenience these changes may cause, especially to those people and groups who have been working on preparations on their displays for this event for many months. This includes external participants and our own museum members who have been working tirelessly on many different aircraft and projects like the Yellow Sun rebuild; but we feel that this is the right decision.

We will be communicating directly with everyone who had already made a commitment to the events.

www.newarkairmuseum.org

First Aircraft to Land at Dunsfold Aerodrome Joins Wings & Wheels Line-up

Friday, April 26th, 2019

Lysander at Dunsfold Wings and Wheels

Wings & Wheels are excited to announce that a Westland Lysander, the first aircraft to ever land at Dunsfold Aerodrome, will return to the aerodrome and display for the first time at the Show.

During the Second World War, Westland Lysander crews flew highly classified clandestine missions from England over Axis territory. As the aircraft will demonstrate during the Show, its wooden, fabric-covered wings taper gracefully, but it alights and takes off at extremely slow speeds on great, bulbous, fixed landing gear.

The Lysander could land in and take off from places that no one would normally recognize as an airfield. It could operate comfortably from pastures, fields and even clearings in the forest. This unique ability meant the Lysander was used primarily to drop off and pick up secret agents deep in enemy territory. Most of the operational record on this unique airplane remains tightly locked in official secrecy.

Jamie McAllister, Event Director, Wings & Wheels comments: “Wings & Wheels has always sought to celebrate, commemorate and acknowledge the incredible history of Dunsfold Aerodrome. Our air displays aim to reflect the Second World War planes that flew from the aerodrome and so we are thrilled the Westland Lysander is joining the air display. The Lysander (nickname the “Lizzie”) is a very special aircraft and, with its unique look and history, will delight our visitors.”

The sensational summer event for the whole family, Wings & Wheels at Dunsfold Aerodrome, will be celebrating its 15th and final Show with a change in date to Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th June. Famous favourites in the air and on the ground will blow your mind, whilst the attractions and Zones in the Arena will keep you entertained and buzzing with delight the WHOLE weekend.

Eyes to the sky as the ‘Wings’ of the event treats visitors to outstanding and diverse 5 hour air displays include show favourites the Red Arrows, Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (two Spitfires), Chinook, Hurricane, the Tigers Parachute Display Team, The Blades, Strikemaster, O’Brien’s Flying Circus, Richard Goodwin, The Turbulent Display Team, B-17 Flying Fortress Sally B and Fireflies Aerobatic Team, accompanied by witty and knowledgeable commentary from aviation experts and display pilots.

The ‘Wings’ of the event would not be complete without a close-up inspection of all the weekend’s visiting aircraft including Dunsfold’s resident Boeing 747 and Brooklands Museum’s VC10 in the ‘Wings Park’, both open for tours.

Supercars and classic and vintage icons put on an awe-inspiring display of power and speed on the Top Gear track in a 2 hour auto spectacular. The ‘Wheels’ of the show included displays from Koenigsegg Agera R, McLaren 12C, Lamborghini Aventador Roadster and Huracan, Pagani Zonda, Ferrari California T, Aston Martin Rapide, Dodge Monaco, TVR Tasmin 280i, Ducati Multistrada 1200s, Ferrari F355 Berlinetta, Ford GT40 and Lotus Elise. Visit the Wheels Zone with a bigger and better crowd line parade and interactive displays from car and motorbike clubs.

The Military Zone & Parade is interactive and explosive bringing re-enactors in a living history zone and our popular military vehicle parade. The Zone has over 80 military vehicles, six re-enactment groups, as well as the history of Dunsfold Aerodrome and Army, Navy and RAF recruitment stands for everyone’s enjoyment.

Sid’s Zone is an action packed free area for the little ones. From 10:00 until 16:00 the kids can join in with colouring competitions, arts and crafts, paper plane challenges, face painting and the popular Sid’s Trail which encourages the whole family to search the arena for questions and answers to win a goody bag. Meet and greets with show mascot Siddeley and the display pilots are not to be missed.

The excitement and anticipation doesn’t stop at the main displays as the 32 acre public arena is bursting with a huge variety of interactive attractions containing all you need for a great family day out. The show arena boasts go-karts, aviation and motoring simulators, military outlets and displays, static aircraft, fairground and over 60 retail outlets selling a wide variety of products and gifts. Shopping in the arena includes a craft marquee full of tempting tea time treats to take home and craft gifts.

As the last aircraft touches down the party starts across the arena with musical evening entertainment from Champagne at the Blitz, a 1940s songbird trio armed with smooth harmonies, seamed nylons and lots and LOTS of red lippy!

Taking the hassle out of your day the show includes added extras to make your experience even more enjoyable; over 18 fixed-price catering outlets, two bars, hospitality facilities, free on-site parking, public camping, lost children point, disabled access, informative show commentary, opportunities to meet the pilots, official show merchandise and grandstand seating.

The 15th annual Wings & Wheels will be held on Saturday 15th & Sunday 16th June 2019, at Dunsfold Park near Guildford, Surrey, and is open to spectators from 09:00 until 20:00.

Advanced rate tickets from £24 for adults or £55 for a family. Single child tickets (for children aged 5 – 15) will be £8. Children under 5 go free. Hospitality packages start from £199 per person, weekend passes, grandstand tickets and camping are also available. For more information visit www.wingsandwheels.net or to book standard tickets call 08712 305 572.

Hunter F2 ‘Heidi’ Restoration Complete

Wednesday, April 24th, 2019

Hawker Hunter at Sywell

On the 20th April 2019 the Sywell Aviation Museum Grand Opening saw the final unveiling of Hawker Hunter F.2 WN904 ‘Heidi’ after her 6 year long restoration. Only 45 F.2s were made – WN904 is the last complete example. F.2s were only flown by 257 and 263 Squadron. Heidi was flown exclusively with 257 as ‘Q Queenie’. VIP guests attended with a close connection to the F.2. On 6th March 1956, Flying Officer Denis Richard Courtney Whiteman took off on a routine night time cross country training flight in Hawker Hunter F.2 WN921 of 263 Sqn from Wattisham. He never returned and no wreckage was found. He was 23 years old leaving two young children. His daughter, Mary-Ann Andrews contacted the Museum last year when she discovered SAM had an F.2 and wanted to come and see it.

At the opening she and her brother Peter were witness to a surprise as whilst the Hunter’s port side is marked as it would have been in service with 257 Sqn, the starboard side has been finished in the colours of 263 Sqn, as WN921, their father’s own aeroplane, as a memorial to him. A short dedication by the Vicar of Sywell and Mears Ashby and the sounding of The Last Post followed.

Geoff Millward also attended as a VIP as his brother Dick Millward probably flew Heidi when on 257 in the 1950s before moving on to an illustrious RAF career.

The jet was formerly part of the IWM collection displayed on the gate at Waterbeach until the barracks closed in 2012 when she was gifted to the Sywell Aviation Museum as their first ever complete airframe. She has been restored as close to stock as possible including the addition of her radar, gun camera, restored ejection seat, cockpit and gunsight under the supervision of project manager and Museum Trustee, Damien Burke. Roundels and squadron markings designed by him were kindly supplied by local firm Sprint Graphics. Funding has been entirely through donations from the public and sales of donated model kits and aviation books (for which the Museum is always grateful).

Sywell Aviation Museum is now open every weekend and bank holiday 1030-1630 and Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 1200-1600hrs until the end of September. Group Bookings available outside hours. email sywellaviationmuseum@gmail.com or call 07968061708 for more info.

www.sywellaviationmuseum.org.uk

Historic Jet Provost planned for RAF Cosford Air Show

Wednesday, April 24th, 2019

Jet Provost at RAF Cosford Air Show

With the RAF Cosford Air Show now less than two months away, the organisers have announced that the event will celebrate 65 years since the first flight of the BAC Jet Provost, with unique displays in the air and on the ground.

The Jet Provost served the Royal Air Force for nearly 40 years as a flying training platform, on which thousands of RAF fast-jet pilots honed their skills.

In the air, there will be a special trio of aircraft performing a formation flying display together, including a Jet Provost T3 in the colours of the RAF Red Pelicans display team – a predecessor to the Red Arrows team of today.

Thanks to the participation of the RAF Museum, and a number of civilian aircraft operators, visitors will be able to see a chronologically arranged display of Jet Provost aircraft, from the initial T1 design, through the T3, T4 & Strikemaster armed variant. A Piston Provost – the aircraft on which the Jet Provost was based – will also form part of the display.

Air Show Director, Mr Clive Elliott said, “We are delighted to have this exciting display to celebrate the Jet Provost through the decades. We look forward to seeing them take to the Shropshire skies, as well as getting up close to these great aircraft in the static display.”

With the Air Show just over six weeks away and tickets selling fast, organisers are encouraging those wishing to attend to purchase their tickets soon. Air Show Tickets, priced £29.00, are currently available from the www.cosfordairshow.co.uk , RAF Museums in Cosford and Hendon and selected Tourist Information Centres. Accompanied under-16s enter the Air Show for free, making the event a superb family day out. The RAF Cosford Air Show is an advanced tickets only event, tickets will not be available on the gate.

Ukrainian Fast Jet to star at Air Tattoo

Thursday, April 18th, 2019

Ukrainian SU-27

One of the stars of last year’s airshow, a Russian-built Sukhoi Su-27 from the Ukrainian Air Force, is set to grace the skies above RAF Fairford once more in a thrilling flying display at 2019’s Royal International Air Tattoo.

The Soviet-era heavy fighter was initially created in reaction to the United States Air Force’s F-15 Eagle. The Sukhoi design, which was the first Soviet aircraft to be operated using an electronic interface instead of conventional manual flight controls, is an exceptionally agile aircraft that can reach top speeds of 2,500 km/h.

Codenamed ‘Flanker’ by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), it first flew in 1977, and was much feared by potential Western opponents during the Cold War.

Since the collapse of the USSR in 1991, the original Su-27 series has continued to equip the Russian armed forces and serve with the Ukrainian Air Force, which we are excited to be welcoming back to the Air Tattoo this July.

Also delighting visitors with their thrilling flying displays will be the RAF Red Arrows, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and the rarely seen Spanish Navy Harriers.

On the ground, visitors will be able to marvel at large transports like the Ukrainian Il-76 ‘Candid’, attending in support of the Su-27, the Royal Jordanian Air Force C-130H Hercules and the US Air Force’s C-17 Globemaster III, to name a few.

Tickets for the airshow, which is staged annually in support of the RAF Charitable Trust, can be purchased online at www.airtattoo.com or by calling 01285 713456. All accompanied under-18s go free.

STAAR recruits are ready for take-off!

Thursday, April 18th, 2019

STAAR Engines

The Summer Time Advanced Aerospace Residency (STAAR) class of 2019 has been selected from a record breaking number of applications from students across England, Scotland and Wales.

This summer, sixty Year 10 students aged 14-15 will participate in two, week long residentials that will see recruits experiencing life as an aerospace engineer, where they will live, work, learn and solve tasks together!

Over 260 students applied for the 60 places available for this year’s summer camp which offers a unique insight into the exciting world of aerospace for youngsters interested in future careers in STEM related fields. Prior to selection, applications were verified ensuring students met the criteria and then placed into a random draw of girls and boys for week 1 and week 2. The draw took place on board the VC10 aircraft by representatives of the organisations who help deliver the programme.

STAAR is fully funded by the global aerospace and defence technology giant, Northrop Grumman, with the support of the Northrop Grumman Foundation in partnership with the Royal Air Force Museum. The residential weeks will accommodate 30 students per week and is delivered by the RAF Museum, Royal Air Force Cosford, RAF Youth and STEM Engagement Team and Tablet Academy.

Sophie Millward, Access and Learning Administrator STAAR Programme, RAF Museum said:
“As we head towards the third year of the STAAR programme, it’s brilliant to see the demand for places growing year on year. We received hundreds of applications from schools spanning the entire length of the country, more than double the number compared to last year. We look forward to welcoming students in July for what will be a truly unique, engaging and memorable experience working with some of the best mentors in the aerospace industry.”

Gillian Arnott, Communications Manager and Corporate Citizenship Lead at Northrop Grumman UK said:
“This year, we are delighted to welcome and work with the Jon Egging Trust Blue Skies Programme, to offer STAAR places to four of their students, each of whom has met the STAAR recruit criteria. The mission of the Blue Skies Programme, to create opportunities to engage and inspire young people, particularly with an interest in aviation, is closely aligned with Northrop Grumman’s STEM educational outreach mission.”

Laura Carey, Area Director Central, Jon Egging Trust said:
“We are excited for our Blue Skies students who will be taking part in this fantastic opportunity to develop their skills in STEM in such an inspirational environment. The Jon Egging Trust delivers accredited programmes to increase young peoples’ self-confidence, self-esteem and other vital life and work skills and was set up in memory of Red Arrows Pilot Jon Egging who tragically lost his life at the Bournemouth Air Festival. The Trust realises Jon’s dreams of inspiring young people through his love of aviation, teamwork and leadership, helping them to overcome adversity, identify their strengths and work towards their ambitions.”

The class of 2019 will be invited to attend the RAF Cosford Air Show on 9 June, where they will have the opportunity to meet with fellow recruits, STAAR partners and enjoy a day viewing the very pinnacle of the aerospace industry. Recruits will also be handed their starter packs and kit ready to start the residential week on 22-26 July and 29 July-2 August 2019.

For more information on the STAAR programme visit www.rafmuseum.org/STAAR.

Dress Up and Get Down for a Celebration of Vintage at Brooklands Museum

Wednesday, April 17th, 2019

Vintage at Brooklands Museum

The public are urged to dress up in vintage style, step back in time and immerse themselves in nostalgia well into the evening at Brooklands Museum’s annual homage to the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s on Saturday 18th May. Live period music in the dance marquee, aircraft and vehicle displays and a well-stocked trade village will mean an unmissable day as the 32 acre site brings together the fashion, music, dancing and vehicles from these great post-war decades of style.

In the dance marquee will be a rolling programme of live music, DJs and FREE dance classes while outside, under the Race Bays will be traders selling everything from clothing and records to homewares, books and magazines. Any ladies wishing to refine their look should head to the Press Hut as a vintage-style hair and make-up parlour will be set up courtesy of Hair That Turns Heads – a troupe of stylists who specialise in recreating the looks and styles from the period. Due to the high demand on the day, they are already taking appointments in advance. To discuss a booking, speak with the team directly on: 07733 383 735 or e-mail: lucy@hairthatturnsheads.co.uk.

Displays of vehicles will include saloons, tourers, vans, motorcycles, hot rods and military which will fill the Paddock, Motoring Village and surrounding areas along with re-enactor groups portraying everything from the Home Guard, RAF and Land Army Girls to civilian and family life adding to the ‘time travelling’ effect. In the skies, the organisers are planning fly-ins of period aircraft*. These will land on the airstrip opposite the Museum entrance at Mercedes-Benz World and visitors will be able to see them up close and meet the pilots.

Special guests on the day include the Vintage Tourists, a couple of globe-trotting gals who write about the very finest places to visit all with a vintage twist. They have been tasked with scouting the site for the best-dressed man and lady at this year’s event which culminates in a prize-giving ceremony in the marquee in front of eager crowds. Also making an appearance will be Studio Harlow: specialising in Hollywood style portraits, they will be setting up a free portrait studio in the Art Deco surroundings of the Ladies Reading Room in the Clubhouse. This will give visitors a chance to capture their inner film star and provide a memorable keepsake of their day.

Brooklands was the world’s first purpose-built motor racing venue which retains its 1930s appearance and buildings so is a perfect venue for such a nostalgic event as this. As well as the motoring heritage, aircraft production and flying which took place at Brooklands over an 80 year period can be fully explored by visitors as their entry ticket includes access to the incredible Award-Winning Aircraft Factory. Inside, full size sections of aircraft are displayed on ‘assembly lines’ and visitors can try some of the tooling and manufacturing skills used by workers through specially-designed interactive work stations. The centre piece in the factory is ‘R for Robert’, the Brooklands WW2 Wellington Bomber surrounded by artefacts that tell the incredible stories during this period and ‘meet’ some of the pilots, engineers and 14,000 workforce that made Brooklands one of the most productive aviation sites in Europe.

All the aircraft, racing car and motorcycle exhibition areas at the Museum will be open as usual from 10am until 5pm. However, the music and dancing will continue in the marquee until 9pm with a bar and catering to keep visitors sustained. There will be a Family Activity Zone led by the Brooklands Learning Team where children can make their own traditional toy to take home. FREE parking will be available, just follow the event signage on the day.

Tickets are available in advance at a discounted rate or on the day: Adults £14.50/£16, Seniors £13.50/£15, Children (5-16 yrs) £8/£9, Family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 children) £38/£42. Advance discounted tickets are available from the Museum Shop or from www.brooklandsmuseum.com. Dance Classes are included in the entry price. The Concorde Experience is £5 for adults, £3 for children. Rides in the 4D Theatre are £4 for adults, £2 for children.