Posts Tagged ‘october’

Did you know?

Sunday, October 29th, 2023


We’re not just a world-class celebration of aviation, but also a charitable enterprise with a mission to inspire the next generation of air, space and STEM pioneers.

• Over the last 10 years RIAT has gifted over £6.5M in donations to our parent charity, The Royal Air Force Charitable Trust (RAFCT)

• In the last year RAFCT has created meaningful experiences in STEM and aviation for 120,000 young people

• By 2026 RAFCT will increase this to 500,000 by partnering with specialist STEM organisations and creating new, innovative projects and competitions

• RAFCT’s Road to RIAT schools STEM competition continues to grow, 400 schools nationwide will take part in the coming year, with the winners enjoying a special final stage at RIAT 24!

The proceeds from ticket sales and all your generous donations directly contribute to helping dreams become a reality, through our parent company, The Royal Air Force Charitable Trust (RAFCT).

Sywell Jetstream Update and Appeal!

Thursday, October 19th, 2023

Sywell Jetstream

Sywell Aviation Museum’s second airframe, Handley Page Jetstream 200 G-RAVL has recently achieved a couple of milestones since its arrival at the Northamptonshire aerodrome in March 2021.

Most of the work has been internal and includes replacement of missing cockpit instruments (with special thanks to the Trenchard Museum at Halton) to the point where it is complete and a new set of passenger windows fitted. In addition, the control runs have been worked through and the repainted and refurbished tailplane and elevators reinstalled on the airframe. Further work will involve aileron and flap controls before the surfaces can be installed then attention will turn to the passenger cabin before a complete external repaint. One side will see her in fresh new paint in the Cranfield College of Aeronautics scheme she currently wears whereas the other will see her adopt her former RACAL Decca livery and G-AWVK registration.

All this work has been funded by donations as the Museum does not charge an entry fee. The majority of which was raised at the Museum’s popular book and model sale held in March this year.

Again the Museum is making an appeal for the donation of aviation books, and especially model kits and accessories, diecast models etc to enable another sale to take place in the new year. Kind donors can see where the money raised goes and the progress that has been made directly due to their generosity.

If you are able to donate any items to the Museum please contact or call 07968061708 – collection can be arranged.

RAF Museum Volunteer awarded MBE for 50 years’ service to heritage

Friday, October 13th, 2023

RAF Museum Roy Martin

RAF Museum Midlands Volunteer Roy Martin has been honoured in HM The King’s Birthday Honours List 2023 and presented with his MBE by HRH The Prince of Wales in a ceremony held at Windsor Castle.

The long-serving volunteer was given the honour at a formal investiture ceremony on Tuesday 4 October, where he received his insignia, in the presence of his wife and two sons.

The King’s Birthday Honours mark the extraordinary contributions of people across the UK, for their outstanding achievement or service to the community which has had a long-term, significant impact. Colleagues at the RAF Museum are delighted to see Roy awarded an MBE for his services and commitment to the heritage sector, and this award is a celebration of his decades of volunteering.

Roy first volunteered at the Museum 50 years ago as Curator. After four years he returned to his engineering roots, overseeing the engineering volunteer team who support the Museum’s Technicians and Apprentices to maintain the aircraft and keep them looking their best. Prior to joining the Museum, Roy served in the RAF for 22 years as Chief Technician, including nine years at RAF Cosford.

On receiving his MBE, RAF Museum Volunteer, Roy Martin said:
‘I was over the moon when I received my letter from Buckingham Palace back in June, informing me I was on The King’s Birthday Honours List. It was a long but exciting wait until October when I was invited to Windsor Castle to receive my medal, accompanied by my wife and our two sons.

It wasn’t until we arrived at the Castle that we were told The Prince of Wales would be awarding my medal at the investiture ceremony. This seemed special, with me being Welsh, and his association with the RAF. He was dressed in his RAF uniform which I thought was very appropriate for the background to my award. He mentioned my 50 years work at the RAF Museum and that he had visited the Museum several times. It was a very sociable, relaxed and enjoyable few moments that I will never forget.

After the ceremony we strolled through the grounds and took lots of family photos. Bits of the day keep coming back in my thoughts – I will never forget what a wonderful experience we had.’

On his time volunteering at the RAF Museum, Roy added:
‘Being involved in the evolution of the RAF Museum over the past 50 years has been an amazing experience. I find it very rewarding when I see the public admiring the exhibit condition maintained by my group of volunteers.’

RAF Museum CEO, Maggie Appleton said:
‘The whole Museum team is absolutely thrilled for Roy. He is a brilliant engineer and problem-solver and, even more important, he supports all of us with his warmth and generosity of spirit. We are so fortunate at the Museum to be blessed with brilliant volunteers, and Roy’s award is a very fitting and much deserved tribute.’

The RAF Museum is open daily from 10.00am and entry is free. For more information visit

Exciting new themes for RIAT24

Monday, October 9th, 2023


The Royal International Air Tattoo will take place on the 19th, 20th and 21st July 2024 and we’re announcing new aircraft themes to fire you up for the next aviation extravaganza.

RIAT24 marks the 50th Anniversary of the F-16 Fighting Falcon’s first flight and RIAT will host a global celebration of this impressive combat jet. Join us to see a fantastic static line-up of Fighting Falcons from around the world as well as spectacular F-16 flying displays.

In addition, our operational theme will be Pushing the Boundaries in Air and Space, where we will be highlighting the important work of flight test and evaluation in modern aviation, with aircraft and organisations from around the world, showcasing their latest technological developments.

So, don’t miss out, get your tickets now. Saturday early bird & Friday & Sunday super early bird, still available.

It’s GOLD for the RAF Museum Midlands!

Thursday, October 20th, 2022

RAF Museum Gold

The RAF Museum Midlands is delighted to announce it has officially achieved the highest accreditation awarded by the VisitEngland Visitor Attraction Quality Assessment Scheme: the Gold Award.

The honours are designed to celebrate excellence within the visitor attraction sector and are available to members of the Visitor Attraction Quality Scheme who represent a wide range of tourism experiences in England.

The RAF Museum is proud to be one of only 30 visitor experiences to receive the highest honour in the 2021-2022 awards, where a total of 97 businesses across the country were recognised for going the extra mile to provide a high-quality day out. Accolades are given for five categories: Welcome, Best Told Story, Quality Food & Drink, Hidden Gem, and Gold for the overall winners.

To achieve the new Gold status, the RAF Museum scored consistently high levels of visitor experience across a wide range of areas, including welcome, catering and orientation, following the annual VisitEngland Visitor Attraction Quality Scheme assessment.

Alan Edwards, RAF Museum Midlands Operations Manager said:
‘We are thrilled to have been presented with the prestigious Gold Award in the VisitEngland Visitor Attraction Accolade 2021-22. It’s hugely gratifying to have this endorsement and recognition of the efforts we make to provide a first-class day out for our visitors. This award will spur us on to continue making improvements to the overall Museum experience, ensuring that we remain a top attraction for many years to come. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate our 50th anniversary than with a Gold Award!’

Discover more about the amazing things to see and do at the award-winning Museum at The Museum is open daily from 10.00am and admission is free.

Aerospace Bristol launches £500,000 appeal to help inspire future engineers, as the museum celebrates its 5th birthday

Thursday, October 20th, 2022

Aerospace Bristol visitors

The home of Concorde is raising funds to sustain and grow its award-winning schools programme over the next 5 years.

Filton, Bristol, 18th October 2022: Aerospace Bristol has announced the launch of Engineering Futures, a new fundraising appeal that aims to raise £500,000 over the course of the museum’s fifth birthday year. Funds raised through the appeal will support the charity’s award-winning learning programme, which has reached over 50,000 school children and young people in the local community since Aerospace Bristol opened in October 2017.

Sally Cordwell, CEO of Aerospace Bristol, said:
“As we celebrate Aerospace Bristol’s fifth birthday and look back upon the achievements of the last five years, it’s crucial that we also look ahead and raise the vital funds needed to sustain and grow the Aerospace Bristol learning programme, which benefits so many young people across the region.

We’re therefore calling on corporate supporters and individuals who care about our engineering industry to support the Engineering Futures appeal and play a part in nurturing the next generation of engineering talent.”

Amy Seadon, Learning & Community Engagement Manager, added:
“Looking back on five years of Aerospace Bristol, we’re proud to have inspired so many young people with workshops like Supersonic Sound, Mission to Mars, Hubble Explorers, and Blast off Rockets, as well as opportunities to work alongside engineers in our Conservation Workshop, and enjoy interactive exhibits, science shows and hands-on visitor activities.

Through the Engineering Futures appeal, we hope to build upon our existing work and enable even more young people to get to grips with science and engineering whilst discovering amazing aircraft and the people who built them.” Aerospace Bristol is a family visitor attraction that tells the story of Bristol’s aerospace achievements from the earliest days of powered flight through to the modern day. The museum is home to the last Concorde ever to fly, with visitors able to step on board Concorde, explore the passenger cabin, glimpse into the cockpit, and learn about the supersonic passenger jet through a show projected on to the fuselage of the iconic aircraft.

As part of Aerospace Bristol’s fifth birthday celebrations, visitors will be able to enjoy a range of events and activities over the upcoming October half-term.

School holiday activities include a demonstration of Concorde’s droop nose on Monday 24thOctober, model flying demonstrations on Tuesday 25th and Thursday 27th October, and the chance to travel to the museum on a vintage Bristol bus, with shuttle buses running between the museum and The Mall, Cribbs Causeway, throughout Saturday 29th October.

The museum will also be unveiling a new Bristol Fighter display, with the wooden frame of the WWI aeroplane suspended above the museum’s existing replica.

To find out more about Aerospace Bristol and the Engineering Futures appeal, visit

Capturing the moment: RAF Museum Midlands buries 50th Anniversary time capsule

Wednesday, October 19th, 2022

RAF Museum Time Capsule

The Royal Air Force Museum Midlands has marked its 50th anniversary milestone by preserving mementos in a time capsule, so future visitors can peek into the past.

The time capsule containing memorabilia, messages, and notable objects giving a snapshot of the Museum today, have been buried in the Museum grounds alongside a learning space used by schools. The capsule now lies in wait for its reopening when its contents are unlocked on the Museum’s 100th anniversary in 2072.

The capsule has been built by Museum Apprentices, and contains items from the time of its burial, including a souvenir guide, Museum teddy bear and newspapers. Messages from staff and volunteers adorned on an RAF flag, together with video messages, have also made it into the capsule. With a nod to the Museums 50 year history, items including badges and booklets dating back five decades have been buried, along with concept art and development plans, so those opening the capsule in 50 years’ time can reflect on the Museum’s ambitions in 2022. RAF Cosford also gifted a Station Commanders Challenge Medal for inclusion in the capsule.

Joining RAF Museum CEO Maggie Appleton, staff, apprentices, and volunteers for the burial event, were students from Burghill Community Academy and Leasowes High School, winners of the Museum’s 50th anniversary art and design competitions. The student’s birthday card design and 3D model of the Museum will be preserved in the capsule, along with a 50th anniversary patchwork created by members of High Flyers adult SEN day centre.

Dierdre Cuss, RAF Museum Access & Learning Assistant said:
‘This is all about the future of the Museum, for the staff, volunteers and the young people who visit us in 2072. When deciding what items to include, we worked with local schools and asked colleagues what they thought would be important to pass on to the next generation, giving a snapshot of the Museum at the time we marked our 50th anniversary. I can’t help but wonder how we’ll feel about these items in the future, and what will go into the next time capsule once these re-emerge. This was a great way of marking the occasion and capturing a moment in time that will spark discovery and debate in the future.’

A plaque will mark the spot where the capsule has been buried.

The Museum is open daily from 10.00am, for more information or to pre-book your arrival time online, visit

British Airways 747 Retires to Dunsfold Aerodrome

Thursday, October 22nd, 2020

747 retires to Dunsfold

Dunsfold Aerodrome is delighted to confirm a second 747 will be taking up residence on the airfield from today, Thursday 22nd October, where it will begin its new life as a TV and film set.

The retired British Airways 747, registration G-CIVW, will depart from Cardiff Airport as flight number BA9178E, landing into the Aerodrome in Surrey at 14:15*.

Jim McAllister, Chief Executive, Dunsfold Aerodrome, comments: “The 747 is a unique and important piece of aviation history and we are excited to be taking delivery of this retired aircraft at Dunsfold Aerodrome. Whilst G-CIVW will no longer fly, the aircraft will be preserved and given a new lease of life in the world of TV and film, training and special events.”

The aircraft, affectionately known as the Queen of the Skies, was built in Everett in the United States and entered the British Airways fleet on 15 May 1998. Its last flight was on 11th June 2020 from Bournemouth to Cardiff and, since then, the aircraft has been stored at Cardiff Airport.

G-CIVW will keep its Chatham Dockyard livery which was first introduced in June 1997. The livery takes its name from the Historic Dockyard, Chatham, Kent and was based on the original flag used by Admiral Nelson in the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. The Chatham Dockyard livery was created for BA by the Admiral’s Original Flag Loft factory in Chatham which had made flags for more than 400 years.

The aircraft, like many other 747s, has ties with the world of film, having flown many actors worldwide in its cabins and visited film set hotspots like Los Angeles and New York. In its new role it will feature more prominently in front of the camera, used to mock up interior and exterior shots for TV and film.

With an aviation heritage that includes the development of military aircraft such as the Harrier, Hawk and Hunter, Dunsfold Aerodrome is the perfect fit for the generation-defining 747.

Please note that due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Aerodrome will not be open to spectators for the 747s final flight and landing.

To watch a live stream of the landing please go to our Facebook page

Brooklands Museum receives lifeline grant from Government’s £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund

Wednesday, October 14th, 2020

Brooklands Museum

Brooklands Museum in Weybridge, Surrey has been awarded £950,000 as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) to help face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure they have a sustainable future, the Culture Secretary has announced today.

Brooklands Museum is one of 1,385 cultural and creative organisations across the country receiving urgently needed support. £257 million of investment has been announced today as part of the very first round of the Culture Recovery Fund grants programme being administered by Arts Council England. Further rounds of funding in the cultural and heritage sector are due to be announced over the coming weeks.

Based on the site of the world’s first purpose-built motor racing circuit and the most prolific aircraft manufacturing site in Europe, Brooklands Museum attracts visitors who are looking for an experience that immerses them in British history, in the place where it actually happened. The stories of the men and women from Brooklands’ pioneering age to the heyday of British aviation and pre-war motorsport, are celebrated throughout the Museum, giving up-close access to an incredible collection of cars, planes and historic buildings. Each visit is brought to life by the over 800-strong workforce of dedicated volunteers, whose knowledge, experience and enthusiasm for Brooklands are the backbone of the visitor experience.

Like many organisations up and down the country, Brooklands Museum continues to face financial challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The next six months will be exceptionally difficult as the winter season and uncertain lockdown restrictions prevail. The funding has been awarded to cover the Museum’s projected losses until Spring 2021 and to provide a cash reserve to cover up to eight weeks’ running costs.

Brooklands Museum Director and CEO, Tamalie Newbery said:
“We are absolutely thrilled to receive this funding. Brooklands is an award-winning museum and now we will be able to remain open to visitors and carry on our work preserving the Brooklands site and collection. As an independent charity, income from visitors has always been our main source of funds, so the Covid epidemic has been very tough. However, we have been delighted by the public’s response since we reopened in August and this grant means that throughout this winter and beyond, people will be able to continue coming here and discovering the inspiring stories of what people accomplished here.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:
“This funding is a vital boost for the theatres, music venues, museums and cultural organisations that form the soul of our nation. It will protect these special places, save jobs and help the culture sector’s recovery.

“These places and projects are cultural beacons the length and breadth of the country. This unprecedented investment in the arts is proof this government is here for culture, with further support to come in the days and weeks ahead so that the culture sector can bounce back strongly.”

Chair, Arts Council England, Sir Nicholas Serota, said:
“Theatres, museums, galleries, dance companies and music venues bring joy to people and life to our cities, towns and villages. This life-changing funding will save thousands of cultural spaces loved by local communities and international audiences. Further funding is still to be announced and we are working hard to support our sector during these challenging times.”

Brooklands Museum is open Thursday to Sunday and every day during half term (week of 26th October). Tickets must be booked in advance at

Brooklands Museum is part of Visit Britain’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ scheme and adheres fully to official Covid-19 guidance with the appropriate safety measures in place for its visitors.

Aircraft conservation work goes on show at RAF Museum Cosford

Wednesday, October 14th, 2020

Wellington restoration at RAF Museum Cosford

Date: 9-14 November 2020 / Time: 10:15am-3:00pm (time slots) / Cost: £6.00pp (under 11s free)

Visitors to the Royal Air Force Museum Cosford will have the opportunity to step inside the Conservation Centre and take a look behind the scenes at aircraft conservation projects, during the annual Open Week from 9-14 November.

In addition to getting up close to current projects, including the refabrication of a Wellington bomber and the reconstruction of the Handley Page Hampden, those visiting during the Open Week will have the chance to speak with the teams who carry out the vital work.

A new arrival in the Conservation Centre and a highlight at this year’s event is the Hawker Tempest II. The Tempest was transported by road from the Museum’s London site in February and will undergo some remedial work by the team at Cosford. The Museum’s example served with No. 5 Squadron RAF, based at Peshawar (now part of Pakistan), before being transferred to the Royal Indian Air Force in 1947. Providing close-air support to the Indian Army, the Tempest remained in front line Indian service until 1953. It was later acquired by the RAF Museum and has been on public display in London since 1991. This is the first time the aircraft has been to Cosford and visitors attending the Open Week will have the first glimpse.

The newly restored Second World War Westland Lysander III (S.D.) fuselage, and the almost complete Handley Page Hampden fuselage, will soon be moving to the RAF Museum’s London site for public display. The Open Week in November will be the last opportunity for aviation fans to view both aircraft at Cosford.

The Lysander has now been restored to its former glory after undergoing three years of conservation work including a new fabric outer skin and complete repaint. As the only surviving Special Duties variant of its type, the Lysander is now painted in No 161 Squadron Special Ops colour scheme, reflecting its service towards the end of the war in non-operational special transport services.

Nearing the end of almost 30 years of restoration, the Hampden is one of only three examples of the type remaining, recovered from a crash site in northern Russia in 1991. The aircraft now has all four fuselage components fully assembled, attached and painted in its original 144 Squadron colour scheme and serial number. The Hampden restored at Cosford is the first complete fuselage section in the UK since the mid-1940s. Visitors to the open week will have the exclusive opportunity to view the cockpit and inside the fuselage from the wing box area, where they will see all the crew positions.

The Open Week is also an opportunity to see the on-going restoration of the Vickers Wellington. One of two remaining Wellingtons, the aircraft at Cosford is the only complete example of its type. Members of the public who have followed the story of the world’s last surviving Dornier Do 17 will be able to get up close to the aircrafts forward fuselage and learn more about the project.

The Conservation Centre will open from 9-14 November between 10.15am and 3.00pm each day, with 45-minute time slots. The number of tickets available for each time slot are limited and must be booked in advance. Tickets are now available to purchase via the Museum website, admission is £6.00 per person (children under 11 are free and must be accompanied by an adult).

To ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience, there will be several precautions in place. Measures include the introduction of time slots and limiting the number of tickets available, and social distancing markers and barriers will control the number of individuals in each area.

The Museum’s display hangars will open from 10.00am until 4.00pm. While still offering FREE entry to all, visitors are kindly asked to pre-book their arrival time online at