Aviation and military museums around Britain

Wednesday 28 August 2019

Monday 26 August


The Red Arrows, the incredible Royal Air Force Display Team, is currently on a tour of North America for the first time in more than a decade. The team, based at RAF Scampton, near Lincoln, puts the spotlight on Britain’s proud aviation heritage. Military and aviation buffs can explore various sites across Britain where you see everything from Second World War classic airplanes such as the Spitfire and Lancaster, to Winston Churchill’s War Rooms.


Imperial War Museum - Duxford


More than a century of aviation is on display in the hangars and buildings at RAF Duxford, the site where the first Spitfires first flew. See up close hundreds of aircraft and displays including the B-52, Concorde, the Spitfire, Lancaster and Tiger Moth, and the interior of a Vulcan bomber. There’s a permanent display of American aircraft from the Second World War to present day models, as well as a special Battle of Britain display exploring the UK’s defences from the First World War and beyond.


Duxford Battle of Britain Air Show 2019, IWM Duxford, 21-22 September 2019. Saturday tickets are £35, weekend tickets are £57.50 - children go free.


Adult tickets cost £18, children ages 5-15 £9 and under 4s go free. A family ticket for one adult and up to three children is £31.50, for two adults and up to 6 children is £45.


Imperial War Museum - London


IWM London explores conflicts throughout history including the Holocaust, the First World War and a special ‘Witnesses to War’ and how they’ve shaped past wars and modern society. Displays feature a Harrier jet, Spitfire plane, a V-2 rocket, a T-34 tank and a 13-Pounder Gun from the First World War. There is also a Reuters Land Rover damaged by a rocket attack in Gaza.


Free admission


Churchill War Rooms - London


From these hidden bunkers beneath the streets of Westminster, Winston Churchill and his war cabinet plotted the allied route to victory during the Second World War. Churchill War Rooms encompass a series of rooms and walkways, well-sheltered from the German bombing raids above. A must-see for Churchill fans to learn about his life and legacy.


Adult tickets cost £22, for children ages 5-15 tickets are £11, children ages four and under go free. Family tickets start from £40.


Farnborough Air Sciences Trust - Hampshire


The story of the history of aviation is told at Farnborough Air Sciences Trust. From the first airborne cameras and flying clothing to high altitude 'space suits', night vision aids, head-up cockpit displays and the first carbon fibre experiments, the development of aeronautical science owes much to Farnborough. You can tour a fully working demonstration wind tunnel!


Free admission


Tangmere Military Aviation Museum - Chichester


Tangmere Military Aviation Museum is located in a corner of the old Tangmere airfield, famed as an RAF fighter station from 1918 until Fighter Command left in 1958. Walk through a vast collection of historic aircrafts, from Hurricanes to two world speed record holding aircrafts. As well as being displayed in hanger-style halls, there are also flight simulators, making this a truly immersive aviation experience.


Adults: £10.00*; Over 60s: £8.00; Children between 5 and 16: £4.00; Children under 5: FREE



Gatwick Aviation Museum - Surrey


Gatwick Aviation Museum has a unique collection of British aircraft from the “golden age” of British aircraft manufacture (from the end of WWII until the 1970s). The collection features aircraft from major manufacturers such Avro, Hawker, Gloster, De Havilland, English Electric, Blackburn and Percival, plus aircraft engines from the likes of Bristol and Rolls Royce, as well as a collection of radio controlled and static models.


Adults £7.50; Children (5-14) £2.50; Under 5 Free


Dambusters Reservoir - Peak District

Derwent Dam (near Sheffield) offers a different view of aviation history as the site where the famous RAF ‘dambusters’ would practice bombing raids during the Second World War. You can walk around the tranquil Howden and Ladybower reservoirs and admire the dams still today. Derwent is a village 'drowned' in 1944 when the Ladybower Reservoir was created by flooding the village of Ashopton, Derwent Woodlands church and Derwent Hall. There are organised walks of the area.



National Museum of Flight - East Fortune, East Lothian


A highlight of the National Museum of Flight lets you get on board a G-BOAA Concorde (40 years since Scotland’s Concorde first flight), see a Red Arrows Hawk, and include hangar tours and see how East Fortune played a significant role in both World Wars.


Adult £12.50; Concession £10.50*; Child (5-15) £7.50 (under 5 free); Family (2 adults and 2 children) £33


Dumfries & Galloway Aviation Museum - Dumfries


The Dumfries & Galloway Aviation Museum collection started with a Bristol Hercules engine from a Wellington Bomber, and is now home to one of Europe’s most extensive collection of aero engines, as well as some of the earliest piston and radial engines through to modern jet engines, built by manufacturers including Rolls Royce, Armstrong Siddeley and De Havilland. The Control Tower is a very rare surviving example of a WW2 RAF control tower. It is home to the majority of the museum’s collection of smaller artefacts and memorabilia.


Adults: £5.40; Children and Concessions: £4.50; Family ticket (2 adults & 2 children): £16.00



Caernarfon Airworld Aviation Museum - Caernarfon https://www.airworldmuseum.com/


As one of the leading defensive sites along the Welsh coast, the airfield of the former RAF Llandwrog is now home to the Caernarfon Airworld Aviation Museum. Its extensive collection of aircraft and aviation memorabilia houses iconic machines such as the Hawker Hunter, D.H. Vampire, along with the only T2 BAe Harrier remaining worldwide. Fantastically, visitors may enter the cockpits of some of the aircraft and find out what it is like to sit in the narrow confines of a jet fighter aircraft.


Adult £6.50; Child/Pensioner £5; Family (2+2) £17.50



Fly in a Spitfire - Headcorn Aerodrome, Kent


For the experience of a lifetime, Fly In A Spitfire experience in a rare two-seater T9 Spitfire. An experienced Spitfire pilot will guide you through your unforgettable flight. Flights are also available in a Tiger Moth and a Harvard. Flights are from Headcorn Aerodrome, Kent (former RAF Lashenden) or from Sywell Aerodrome, Northants.


From £135 (Tiger Moth) to £2,750 (Spitfire)

For more information contact:

Cathy Stapells


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