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Thread: RAF Museum Hendon - Closure / Dispersion of Battle of Britain Hall

  1. #271
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    Just to be clear - the Royal Air Force Museum operates across two sites - at Hendon and at Cosford. It is one entity, with airframes often rotating between the two, and indeed rotating off display as well. Suggesting that one site is a 'better' museum than the other misses the point rather. In an ideal world, the museum would take on an entire airfield, with appropriate history back to 1918 and before, and curate both the airfield and the collection accordingly.

    I also agree with FB's comment about the museum telling the story of the RAF, not its opponents. The IWM would be a much better place to do that - and it does so at Duxford, though not in quite the same way as had been the case at Hendon.

  2. #272
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    ww2 was arguably the RAF's time, and the B of B the high point of that time, so it deserves to be high lighted and if we have the aircraft involved all the better... pre/post that time by all means show what they had to high light how RAF aircraft developed, but the ww2 period deserves its own gallery.
    Then when johnny visits on a school trip he can ask and be shown what his g/dad flew in, and then see what the baddies flew against him in, he will probably like the "shiny" fighters shown elsewhere cause they are from the recent past, but the ww2 aircraft have bumps and guns and propellers, and he associates them with his family...
    "Museum- a building, place or institution devoted to the acquisition, conservation, study, exhibition, and educational interpretation of objects having scientific, historic, or artistic value."

    Or are we going down the road of apologising or removing things from our history because in todays world its deemed uncorrect...

    just my view, regards,
    jack...


    this post may contain grammatical errors...

  3. #273
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    I entirely agree with Bruce and FB and I've said this for years. While the RAFM should not ignore its opponents and allies, it should focus its aim on the RAF. For example, the RAFM B17 should be in RAF colours, ideally 100 Group. There are two other UK B17s that properly memorialise the USAAF, even if they are both in the same place.
    Last edited by WebPilot; 1st September 2017 at 14:27.

  4. #274
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    Some very good points in the thread. I still will believe that the BoB hall should have stayed and be revamped. I do believe that some commands are woefully underrepresented. I also echo sentiments about wider RAF heritage. Certainly the Chinook display is not what it could be. I pray Bravo November gets in there one day as she cuts across so much British aviation heritage and history....Falklands to NI, GW1, GW2 to the present day as well as being a significant Flight Test airframe too. I also think the B17 in RAF colours as well as the Cat would be good. But please keep a dedicated tribute to the Few at both sites.

  5. #275
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    There seems to be a lack of joined up thinking at Cosford and Hendon. Cosford concentrates on the Cold war, plus prototypes and test aircraft . Hendon has the WW1 exhibition so it makes sense to have a large WW2 exhibition and concentrate on these at hendon. By all means show the falklands, Gulf wars, Korea, Afghanistan etc but make the core of the collection the machines, and crews from both world wars, with over 75% of that content being RAF. Always thought it a travesty that there is not one Transport Command aircraft at hendon!
    Last edited by farnboroughrob; 2nd September 2017 at 18:01.

  6. #276
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    I personally feel that the Battle of Britain period should be represented in some way, yes i do get it that the RAF wasn't solely the Battle of Britain but surely any RAF Museum should represent it on a scale that it so rightly deserves.

    In regard to the former Battle of Britain hall, i have to say i liked the feel of the whole place even though as some have said it looked a little tired, it just gave you that atmosphere even though some aircraft were not from the period but i guess it would be a little hard to find the likes of a complete Battle of Britain Ju87, so i guess the next best thing would be a later model Stuka and the likes,even though not correct it certainly did it for me.

    I know in this current world that things move on but lets not forget an extremely important part of our history.

    Represent it and respect it in the way it deserves.

    Never forget..
    Last edited by hawker1966; 1st September 2017 at 18:57.

  7. #277
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    I always thought the Hurricane wreck memorial centre piece was a moving place to stop for a moment. I can remember (some years ago)a group of unruly school children being removed from there by security for being disrespectful. Instead the museum management do it for them these days.
    mmitch.

  8. #278
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    A very good point, that word comes to mind to me also.

  9. #279
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnboroughrob
    Always though it a travesty that there is not one Transport Command aircraft at Hendon!
    Not 'always' of course.

    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

  10. #280
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    There seems to be plenty of land surrounding the IWM at Duxford to either build a much larger building to house a complete history of the complete Royal Air Force or possibly a slightly smaller building to accommodate what is currently at Hendon and have the museum split into two buildings.
    If you're not living on the edge then you're taking up too much space!

  11. #281
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    Duxford isn't part of the RAF Museum.

    Brian
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  12. #282
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    I thought they were all part of the IWM group.
    If you're not living on the edge then you're taking up too much space!

  13. #283
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    Moggy,
    I tried not to mention the Beverley......

    Given the crucial role the Dakota played across all Theatres in WW2, and the work the C130 did post-war, it is appalling that neither are represented at Hendon. The lack of a real Chinook, Puma, Jag, GR7/9, VC-10, C130 and Nimrod at Hendon is an astonishing oversight to post war campaigns - yet we have Cold War jets like the Lightning, F4 and F3 with little operational significance (though with wide enthusiast appeal...) blocking space at Hendon when 'their' campaign, the Cold War, is a major focus for Cosford. In 30 years the Nimrod, C130K and VC-10 outside will all have been scrapped.....The 'shuffle' has freed up space which could tell more than just the tales of fighter pilots and save some of these airframes whilst telling of the vital roles the aircraft, crews and groundcrews performed. Curate the collection properly and explain to people the rationale behind it.

  14. #284
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    Utterly pointless to try to get a C-130, VC-10 or Nimrod into Hendon; realistically think of the cost of moving any of these and the huge space they'd require! There is also already a Nimrod (R1?) at Cosford.
    WA$.

  15. #285
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    I still think the RAFM biggest problems is being spit into two different sites. You can never tell the history of the RAF that way iunless you have a duplicate collection.

    Of course this aimchair expert hasn't a clue on where the best location for the RAFM would be. Hendon would be too small. Cosford perhaps too remote, but also the lenght of the runways has been a problem in flying in some larger types.

    On the subject of space at Duxford some wise soul on these forums did suggest moving the Science Museum's reserve collection there from wroughton.

  16. #286
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    Speaking of absent exhibits, I fail to understand why, allegedly, Cosford has turned down taking on the Shackleton currently at Manchester. How can the RAF museum collection be complete without one?

  17. #287
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    The Shackleton is part of the RAFM collection, along with most of the aircraft in the Manchester museum.

    To my mind it doesn't matter that there are no transport aircraft at Hendon. They are in the collection, which operates on two sites in the U.K., and also loans its aircraft out to other organisations such as Tangmere, and of course Pima. For enthusiasts, we will likely visit both sites anyway.

    I am starting to think that the non RAF aircraft in the collection would be better off with the IWM, and could be placed in better context there, with one or two exceptions. Likewise there are aircraft in the IWM collection that are not strictly relevant to their core remit of recording a history of conflict.

  18. #288
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    I would agree with that. There are definitely aircraft in both collections that could be swapped to the benefit of both.

  19. #289
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    Creaking Door,
    I don't think it's "utterly pointless" - particularly if you're re-designing the museum and the RAFM has moved similar aircraft (Valiant) recently. The C130 is actually not that big, and the high wing permits exhibits to be displayed underneath. The inside could easily be an effective "walk through" exhibit (a bit like the Chinook one) with screens telling the role of the -130 in RAF service. The VC10 and Nimrod are big, but then have a look at the size of the F4 and F3 - they're not small aircraft. The role of AAR is an essential "force multiplier" for the Fast Jet fleets - I accept that the TriStar is too big and that Cosford has a Victor K2 ("double hatting" as a V-Bomber) but there would be room to have a VC-10 at Hendon, possibly where the Valiant came from if nothing else! How about the VC-10 suspended from the ceiling or elevated with a trio of FJ "plugged in" - that would be quite a sight......Whatever happened to the old Nimrod recruiting fuselage that used to attend the airshows? Could make the basis for a great exhibit; if nothing else, a fuselage mock up with screens telling the role of MPA could be accommodated along one of the outer walls. The lack of aircraft with substantial combat/operational pedigree at Hendon (Jag, GR9, C130) whilst Cold War Warriors (F4 and F3) are represented continues to baffle me. Some sensible moves, and some curation policy changes could see a better blend of aircraft in each location.

  20. #290
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    Bruce, yes I realise the Manchester Shackleton is part of the RAFM collection, but my understanding based on various media reports, is that with Manchester wishing to dispose of it, Cosford has turned it down. If that is the case, where does it go?

  21. #291
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    The IWM got rid of it's 'Ju-52' recently because 'it didn't fit' who is to say they wouldn't do the same for any Enemy/non-sexy Aircraft if the 'Director-General' feels like it?
    Królewska Moc Powietrza nie jest lot cyrku.....

  22. #292
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    The best place for the Shackleton would be the new Avro Heritage Centre at Woodford, but I cannot understand why MOSI wants to lose this fantastic and popular exhibit!

  23. #293
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    How about a VC-10 suspended from the ceiling...
    At Hendon.....now you are dreaming!

    Large airframes have been moved to Hendon, the Liberator for example, but the Valiant (quite rightly in my opinion) was moved away to Cosford; as for moving a C-130 to Hendon by road, why bother when one could be flown to Cosford?

    Anyway, doesn't Cosford have a Hercules (and a VC-10) on display?
    Last edited by Creaking Door; 4th September 2017 at 11:05.
    WA$.

  24. #294
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    "There seems to be plenty of land surrounding the IWM at Duxford to either build a much larger building to house a complete history of the complete Royal Air Force or possibly a slightly smaller building to accommodate what is currently at Hendon and have the museum split into two buildings"

    a. Duxford is IWM not RAFM
    b. Given that Duxford is fighting planning permission to try and keep the airfield active where the land is highly valuable as a potential Cambridge dormitory town, motorway service station etc. then even if it were a single museum entity, that just wouldn't be affordable

    Duxford does, however, have an approved master plan for site development that will see some good and positive changes.


    The ideal location (in terms of history, airfield and hangars etc. with probably the potential to build more) would be RAF Scampton (with a co-located RAFAT and RAFBBMF). You would have an RAF centre piece museum and flying aircraft (not unlike what is attractive with Duxford). However, unfortunately and sadly, it is in the middle of Lincolnshire, not significantly near a motorway network or large populous, or London etc.
    Last edited by Agent K; 4th September 2017 at 11:18.

  25. #295
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    My views on Hendon have already been mentioned, but two things still stick in my mind,

    A museum is there to show major works a country owns / holds or deeds and the means used to accomplish them, and these days there seems to be a mad rush to introduce technology to tell that story, that is fair enough, but where it falls down is when it replaces the items that it is purporting to represent, people visit Military museums to see real tangible aircraft, weapons, tanks and ships, not models or TV screens.
    Again the shuffling around of the assets between sites and the mad rush to introduce kiddie and corporate entertaining facilities have seen what is beoming a rarity in its own right, the Catalina dumped outdoors to deteriorate, I would rather it was put in store than left outside, surely there is plenty of hangerage it could be placed in. With the departure of the JU-52, something said to not fit into the collections, one does wonder at the monies and time lavished on the recovered Dornier which while being a magnificent effort and gesture, was neither operated or a type we used, and one wonders if the room that is taking up would not have been better used to house the Cat that is relevant to types we operated.

    The BOB hall and it's dismantling. Ok maybe it needed a rethink and a refresh, but for the foreign tourist, as indeed the UK, one of the main draws to Hendon must be been the fact it was one of the only places in the World where one could see such a vibrant collection of surviving types from the Battle of Britain and the second world war, the BOB being first war truly fought in the air only.
    To disseminate amongst other collections and across the world this truly historic collection is a travesty, and has broken up a collection that may never be seen again together, yes the UK has fought wars since and yes there is a need to see the RAF in more modern times, but Cosford with the cold war collection and Duxford with its collections deal with those. I just find it incredulous that the RAF PLC signed up to this rape of the hall.

    As for Bravo November.... strange isn't it, It was just another Chinook, I knew the crew, had been on several jolly's abroad with members of the crew etc and could tell you some tales, heck I even remember it arriving back at Odiham and climbing over it and looking at the state it was in considering it only had a couple of hundred hours on the clock lol.. Sadly some of the crew are no longer with us........

    Probably the best place and cheapest to have developed would have been RAF St Athan, Move Cosford and the Army / Navy training there under one roof, as per the original plans and you could have converted the super hangars into the new Museum, there would have been room to house the 10's and hercs etc indoors and a runway that could take everything. Shame it is being wasted as a car plant.
    Last edited by TonyT; 4th September 2017 at 11:42.

  26. #296
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    Here you go the ideal site... St Athans







    http://www.hlngroup.co.uk/portfolio-...dragon-hangar/

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  28. #298
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    QUOTE "With the departure of the JU-52, something said to not fit into the collections, one does wonder at the monies and time lavished on the recovered Dornier which while being a magnificent effort and gesture, was neither operated or a type we used, and one wonders if the room that is taking up would not have been better used to house the Cat that is relevant to types we operated."

    Tony,

    The RAFM site at Cosford displays a CASA 352 (Ju52/3m derivative), so far as I know it is still on display. The Amiot licence built Ju52/3m derivative that was on show at IWM Duxford and used to represent a Luftwaffe aircraft was disposed of and is now at Krakow. Are you perhaps conflating the RAFM and IWM?

    TIm
    "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."(Mary Baker Eddy)

  29. #299
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    I realise there are two, I was just looking at it as a rather narrow collecting policy the IWM seems to be following.

    Strange as it is, St Athans would be a merry go round for some of the types as the aerial photo shows the remains of the hangar bases to the left, where the collection used to be housed, we ran the 410, 190 and Tony there.

  30. #300
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    A rather narrow collecting policy that includes the AAM! Albeit a rather nice hall.

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