U.K. Travel Tips

Profile picture for user PhantomII

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20 years 1 month

Posts: 7,989

Outside of Duxford, where would you guys recommend travelling to in the U.K. as far as historical aviation is concerned? Figured I'd ask those closest to all the good stuff!

Thanks!

Original post
Profile picture for user Planemike

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12 years 1 month

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I feel sure a thread already exists containing everyones thoughts, ideas and reccommdations on this topic.

How long do you have? Are you able to travel the whole of the country?

Planemike

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14 years 11 months

Posts: 2,895

will you have transport or be relying on trains, buses, etc.?

Roger Smith.

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8 years 6 months

Posts: 851

In no particular order places I have visited and enjoyed apart from ones already mentioned.
Imperial War Museum, central London
RAF museum, Hendon (London suburbs)
RAF museum, Cosford, near Wolverhampton 140 miles from London by car
Shuttleworth Collection, Old Warden, Bedfordshire 50 miles from London by car
Solent Sky, Southampton, 85 miles from London by car
Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre, East Kirkby, Lincolnshire, 130 miles from London by car
Fleet Air Arm museum, Yeovilton, Somerset 130 miles from London by car

Member for

12 years 11 months

Posts: 1,037

Tangmere I think is lovely for a small museum feel with some great artefacts. About 70 minutes by train from London and a short bus ride from there right to the main gate.

FB

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11 years 1 month

Posts: 637

You will find more aviation museum per square mile in the UK than anywhere else. You have the big national museums
RAF Museum hendon, off airport in north London, acess able by public transport. Large Battle of Britain collection, many German aircraft plus new WW1 exhibition, free admission
IWM South Lambeth, in central Lonon, small number of aircraft in a bigger museum, free admission
Science Museum, some early aircraft, and a few WW1 WW2 again central London, free admission
Fleet Air Arm Museum, in Somerset 2+ hours from london, big naval aircraft collection and carrier deck mock up on active military base
RAF Museum Cosford, near Birmingham, big cold war exhibition and prototypes and some of the large RAF aircraft on a RAF ground training base
Museum of Army Flying, Middle Wallop half way from London to Yeovilton, many helicopters and air observation types. Active helicopter base

You have many volunteer museum that mainly contain post war jets, with some noticeable exceptions.

shuttleworth collection- many flyable prewar and even pre WW1 aircraft-a must, car required, grass airfield
Airbase Coventry and Newquay airports- many flyable jets from the 50's and 60's plus static aircraft
de havilland aircraft musuem- need a car for this, three de Havilland Mosquitos and many other company products
Solent sky- in the middle of Southampton Solent fly boat spitfire, S6 schnieder seaplane and many more
Manchester- city center with a cross section of aircraft
Brooklands museum- not far from Heathrow motor and aircraft museum Concorde, Wellington and more
Yorkshire Air Museum- Halifax, Mosquito and many more

Hope this gives you a good idea of a few places, its will all depend on how long you have and weather you have access to a car?

Rob

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16 years 6 months

Posts: 8,505

I would agree with all the above. Plus East Kirkby and East Fortune if time permits. East Kirkby especially as it is a bit of a time warp back to the dark days of WWII.

Profile picture for user Denis

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15 years 11 months

Posts: 1,496

And being from the US, there are quite a few 8th AAF related museums in East Anglia such as Thorpe Abbots (100th BG(H), Framlingham/Parham(390th BG(H), Debach(493rd BG (H), that are situated in the old control towers of what is left of these airfields.

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13 years 6 months

Posts: 158

If it was me I'd do -
Brooklands and FAST(Farnborough), 20 miles apart & easily do both in one day.
Yeovilton
Cosford
Newark
But it all comes down to your travel arrangements etc.

Member for

7 years 10 months

Posts: 641

I would definitely recommend the Science Museum in London as they have some of the most famous aircraft in Britain, e.g. Alcock and Brown's Vimy, Amy Johnsons Gipsy Moth, Britain's first jet, the Gloster E28/39, the Supermarine S6B that won the won the Schneider Trophy outright, and an original Cody aeroplane.
Also, if you plan to visit the Shuttleworth Collection try to get there on a flying day.
But, where ever you decide to go have a great time. I'm sure you will.

Profile picture for user Whitley_Project

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20 years 1 month

Posts: 2,800

Hi - the RAF Museum (London) would be my first choice, followed by the IWM in London (think it's closed at the present time for refurb) and Duxford.

Is there anything in particular you want to see?

Profile picture for user PhantomII

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20 years 1 month

Posts: 7,989

Wow! I knew you guys had a lot of aviation history here, but for the size of the country that's quite a lot of places! The FAA Museum at Yeovilton interests me in particular for some reason...do they have a Swordfish by chance?

As for my travel options (yes to a car for those who asked), they are wide open. Let's just say my stay in the U.K. isn't exactly temporary. Thanks for all the tips!

Profile picture for user OneEighthBit

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11 years 10 months

Posts: 729

Why not take in the beautiful Cotswolds and come visit the newly re-opened Jet Age Museum near Cheltenham?

http://www.jetagemuseum.org/

We're not the biggest museum in the country but we've got lots of good stuff and very passionate volunteers. :)

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11 years 1 month

Posts: 637

Wow! I knew you guys had a lot of aviation history here, but for the size of the country that's quite a lot of places! The FAA Museum at Yeovilton interests me in particular for some reason...do they have a Swordfish by chance?

As for my travel options (yes to a car for those who asked), they are wide open. Let's just say my stay in the U.K. isn't exactly temporary. Thanks for all the tips!


One tip for Yeovilton is that it is located on the A303 road which, in the summer, is a major tourist route and at weekends is very busy and can be slow, a weekday visit would be best. The museum is in 4 main sections. First has some replica WW1 aircraft and some more modern helicopters. then a ww2/Korean era hall with Swordfish, Avenger, Hellcat, Firefly, Seafire, Seafury etc. Then there is 'carrier' this is a mocked up flight deck with 50's and 60's aircraft (Phantom,Buccaneer,Seahawk,Sea Vixen etc)arranged 'on deck' . The photography conditions are poor but it is a good experience. You then walk through a simulation of the inside of the carriers island which is quite realistic. The final hangar contains a prototype concorde (belong to the Science museum been here since the 70's as they had nowhere to put it!) plus research aircraft, Sea Harriers and others. Have fun
Profile picture for user Moggy C

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20 years 1 month

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You do need to allow a full day for Duxford, and even then you won't have seen it all.

Shuttleworth/Old Warden is very close (by car) but there is no sense in trying to do both in one day.

Near to Duxford is The Eagle pub in Cambridge with its famous autographed ceiling; a must for anyone interested in the Mighty Eighth and Bomber Command

Moggy

Profile picture for user Moggy C

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20 years 1 month

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And don't forget East Kirkby. As close as you'll get to a live WW2 Bomber Command aerodrome, complete with living Lancaster.

Moggy

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13 years 4 months

Posts: 8,856

If you visit Yeovilton, you might consider doing Bovington (tank collection) and Portsmouth ( historical dockyards) as they are all within about 60 miles of each other, plus you have Stonehenge if you feel you want to follow in Obama's steps.

See

http://www.tankmuseum.org/home

http://www.historicdockyard.co.uk/

You have access to the ships shown above and below decks.

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13 years 4 months

Posts: 8,856

Try to hit Duxford when a show is on too, legends is the best.