Key.Aero Network
Register Free

Page 3 of 14 FirstFirst 123456713 ... LastLast
Results 61 to 90 of 409

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

  1. #61
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    1,551
    Quote Originally Posted by hampden98 View Post
    It's dusty, dark, tired and worn.
    You could say that about most of Hendon. I thought the BoB hall was one of the better elements. The bomber hall is a cramped, illogically laid out and badly lit mess of harsh spotlights and huge shadows. It is an impressive collection of aircraft, so the weekday pensioner crowd who simply want to see the same aircraft every few months in perpetuity get their fill (most of this forum, apparently). As an actual museum I thought it fell rather flat. Anywhere else a Lancaster or Vulcan would be the pinnacle of an indoor collection, but in Hendon they are relatively difficult to make out in either the gloom or the beam of the occasional spotlight, dazzling you as you look up. The Vulcan especially becomes little more than a large canopy that turns areas of the floor underneath into complete darkness.

  2. #62
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Kent.UK
    Posts
    1,722
    The centre of the BofB hall is the memorial with the names of the participants surround the wreck of a Hurricane in which one died.
    I just hope that it doesn't end up in storage because someone thinks it is 'just junk.'
    mmitch.

  3. #63
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    656
    It seems futile to criticise a redevlopment of part of the museum without knowing what is going on. What interests me more is the situation of the museum as a "tourist attraction". For some years now, attractions in central London have been steadily smartened up and public transport has also been improved. Has Hendon been missing out on this? Is it getting to be rather out on a limb? Does public transport to the museum need to be improved? Surely these are more important questions than the precise nature of the exhibitions?

  4. #64
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    193
    Another two cents worth.
    I remember visiting the Battle of Britain Museum ( it was a 'Museum' then, not a 'Hall'), shortly after it opened. My first visit to Hendon. I was pretty disappointed. Dark, rather dull and, I thought, not a great advertisement for the RAFM as a whole. Subsequent visits reinforced this view and I tended to spend little if any, time on the place. The rest of the site, especially the galleries of artifacts and displays I found much more interesting.
    Cosford, which I visit much more regularly than Hendon, lacks the latter. (Cold War building? A vast echoey chamber with far too much background noise and a truly dopey location for the shop, but anywhere that manages to squeeze a Belfast indoors has to get my approval!).
    I'm not averse to changes at Hendon, on which I have always had a bit of a downer; when they were casting around for a location the choice of a place near London where there was no prospect of flying struck me as rather dimwitted - especially in the light of all those former bases that were closing down and had runways and all the infrastructure required to operate aircraft. (Does this dream location sound familiar?). Of course, I was a tad biased, living as I did at Syerston which at the time was utterly unused and had all those lovely Expansion Plan buildings etc with which to tell the story of the RAF. Naturally, I wanted the museum on my doorstep!
    Of course, it was a National museum so proximity to London was a consideration but the vast majority of the RAF has spent it's life in pretty rural locations and I have always wondered if those setting up the RAFM site were more concerned with the idea of the fleshpots close by with which to make a lively weekend out of the rather prosaic museum business which should have been the prime concern. (Disclaimer: purely a cynical personal opinion - it's an age thing).
    Change is inevitable I fear, and not always for the better. Like many I have strong views on the subject of RAFM decisions and policies which would,no doubt, stir up lively debate if aired but, while I feel very strongly that the BoB should be properly recognized as the pivotal event it was, I am not sorry to see the back of the Hall; time will tell, only please- don't overdo the computer graphics and interactives! ( Another age thing!).

  5. #65
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1,493
    Quote Originally Posted by mmitch View Post
    The centre of the BofB hall is the memorial with the names of the participants surround the wreck of a Hurricane in which one died.
    I just hope that it doesn't end up in storage because someone thinks it is 'just junk.'
    mmitch.
    Agreed, that is one of the most contemplative museum exhibits ever (though I miss the Home Guard mannequin) . If I had my way the Do17 would be similarly positioned on the opposite side of the hall with a list of the German dead.

  6. #66
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Below waterlevel
    Posts
    2,053
    So then the hunt will be on to find an Italian wreck to list the fallen Italians.
    Cees

  7. #67
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    pi::
    Posts
    3,424
    The Italian was lucky... he survived and so did the 42

  8. #68
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    St Ives, cambs
    Posts
    2,581
    HP111

    There is a bus stop virtually outside the main gate and the tube is a five minute walk away.

    When I left an hour ago, it was quite busy mainly with kids running around.

    Slightly off topic, I'm at the Tower of London and first time I've seen a 21 gun salute. For the Queens birthday I was told.

    Brian
    The Future Of Photography Is Mirrorless

    DUXFORDfotoGALLERY
    DfG on Facebook

  9. #69
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1,493
    Quote Originally Posted by CeBro View Post
    So then the hunt will be on to find an Italian wreck to list the fallen Italians.
    Cees
    Why not, there must be something in the water around Malta or in the North African desert that would fit the bill.

  10. #70
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Below waterlevel
    Posts
    2,053
    I'm all for it to give a balanced vision of what happend then.
    Has any Italian aircraft investigation ever taken place in the UK?
    Cees

  11. #71
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    656
    Quote Originally Posted by Pen Pusher View Post
    HP111
    ..... the tube is a five minute walk away......
    Brian
    Just to be pedantic on that point, it was more like twelve minutes last time I timed it - so 15 minutes for a lot of people.
    It hasn't always been obvious what route to take from the tube station.
    I am just trying to understand the parameters relating to access to the museum.
    I am tending to feel that Hendon is an unavoidably limited site and is best regarded as an outpost of Cosford.

  12. #72
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1,493
    Quote Originally Posted by CeBro View Post
    I'm all for it to give a balanced vision of what happend then.
    Has any Italian aircraft investigation ever taken place in the UK?
    Cees
    The RAE conducted engineering assessments of the following (or parts of) Italian aircraft at Farnborough.
    Caproni Campini
    BR20
    CR42
    Fiat G55
    MC 202
    Piaggio P108
    SM S82

    The BR20 and CR42 were BoB casualties with the RAFMs CR42 being the sole survivor.

  13. #73
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    1,551
    Quote Originally Posted by HP111 View Post
    Just to be pedantic on that point, it was more like twelve minutes last time I timed it - so 15 minutes for a lot of people.
    It hasn't always been obvious what route to take from the tube station.
    I am just trying to understand the parameters relating to access to the museum.
    I did it in about twelve minutes, from memory, from Colindale. This station is right on the edge of zone three, whereas Hendon Central is in zone two. My Oyster pass was only set up for the first two zones.

    I did the route beforehand using Google street view, to get a feel for the buildings. Without that I would have been following the banners on the lampposts.

  14. #74
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Cambridge, Duxfordshire
    Posts
    3,481
    The whole thing needs a radical policy re-think at the top level. The fundamental problem is that the generation that could be excited and/or inspired by a static artefact coupled with their own imagination, enough to travel to suburban North London, are becoming grandparents now. Things need to at least move. Bemoaning it won't help, though it's not a great state of affairs.

    One idea that would work is a working museum, combining the BoBMF with the static content of the RAFM. Rather like Duxford, in fact. One facility for two operations, and double the draw. Just need a venue.
    www.whirlwindfighterproject.org
    It's all good. Probably.

  15. #75
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    On QRA
    Posts
    65
    Wether we like it or not the the road most larger museums in the uk are going down is to cater for those who spend the most money, ie familys.
    Children now have very short attention spans and expect instant entertainment via electronic means, phones, ipads etc so museums start putting in entertainment consoles,
    sorry interactive displays. Looking at static dust gatherers will not do. Then its off to the Cafe to refuel followed by some goodys from the shop.
    A small fortune spent and compare that to those who bring flasks and sandwiches, moan about parking fees and spend nought then whine about how the museum is going down hill.
    And lets not forget the corporate and private functions that bring in cash.
    Thanks to them a middle aged anorak like myself will be able to have a museum to visit in the future
    With the public spending squeeze income generation is the buzzword and lets not forget corporate functions.

  16. #76
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    On your six
    Posts
    1,980
    Might be worth remembering that a museums primary task is to preserve it's exhibits, everything else is secondary.

    The small amount of signage on most exhibits (not just Hendon) is barely equal to that found on an Airfix box, and as for interactive displays (when they are working) kids use them just to get more points than each other, the details such as "which mark of spitfire was manufactured in the highest numbers" are instantly forgotten, as they move on to the next screen, on the other hand if you were to start one up, and I don't think they'd forget that in a hurray.
    Why be your own worse critic, that's what the forum is for.

  17. #77
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Grantown on Spey
    Posts
    2,577
    On my few visits to Hendon I have always been sad to note the abscence of information about the history of many of the airframes shown in front of them. They give no credit to the efforts of the many who saved them and leave most of the public poorly informed about preservation. Yes I know the info is all there on line but thats no use to a casual visitor.

  18. #78
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Irthlingborough
    Posts
    313
    I'll probably get shot down in flames but personally, I'd like to see the 3 RAF establishments (Hendon, Cosford & Stafford) all relocated to one site and then sell Hendon!

    Sure Hendon has transportation links but if there is a need to increase visitor numbers, I don't consider the Museum to be in the ideal location and could be situated more centrally!

    Then, the money obtained from a sale could then be used for restoration of existing exhibits, funding new acquisitions and given sufficient space, could also allow for the medals, uniforms, personal stories, paintings plus many of the artefacts stored at Stafford, to be displayed again!

    Cosford, if the Museum side could be extended would be ideal and yes, while this is similar to what already exists at Duxford, would be without but any active operators onsite and each Hangar (or Hanger, take your pick) could then be used to tell its own story of the RAF.

    Additionally, if the continuation of the air shows could also be allowed, this may allow the possibility of regular income for the RAF Museum!

    Wittering may have been an ideal site, prior to its transfer to the Army though are there any of RAF Station due for closure that would fit the bill?

    I accept that this is a very simplistic view and that there will be many that feel that Hendon is sacrosanct and that money would also be needed to bring a new site up to standard, but I do feel that all three sites should be together as one and readily available to the public,

    Hendon is too small for this to happen and I don't believe that it has any chance of expanding on its current site!

    As I say, a very simplistic view and I'm sure that I will be shot down by many plus I also need to get back to work
    Tony

    ...and pray that there's intelligent life somewhere up in Space cos there's bugg*r all down here on Earth!

  19. #79
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Nördlich
    Posts
    110
    Quote Originally Posted by scotavia View Post
    On my few visits to Hendon I have always been sad to note the abscence of information about the history of many of the airframes shown in front of them. They give no credit to the efforts of the many who saved them and leave most of the public poorly informed about preservation. Yes I know the info is all there on line but thats no use to a casual visitor.
    Entirely agree. I was not aware that the Ju88 ended up in Allied hands after it was flown to Scotland by two defectors and another not so cooperative crew member, until after my visit.

  20. #80
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    168
    It is interesting to ponder that 50 years on from when the site was chosen at RAF Hendon because it was considered well-situated we now find it being overwhelmed by progress. Go back 60 odd years from that time and the site was chosen for aviation because it was open and semi-rural!

    Times change, can't stop that.

    Those running the RAF Museum find themselves now with some difficult choices. Certainly I'm sure we'd all like to see the whole collection together and displayed somewhere with an active runway. But the money simply doesn't exist for that at present.

    The BoB Hall, excellent as it was, was getting tired. I am happy to hold fire and see what transpires from the plans: those responsible I'm sure are well aware of the significance of that 4/5/6/7 (delete to preference to avoid argument) month period in the 100 years of the RAF and it will remain a notably prominent part of the new displays. I love Mitch and Aeronut's ideas for the rolls of honour, I hope someone reads and takes note.

    Space at Hendon is getting more and more squeezed as the service gets older and accumulates more history, more stories and more artifacts. Difficult choices indeed.

  21. #81
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Usually somewhere....
    Posts
    3,073
    I went to Hendon on Monday for the first time since December 2003 and was disappointed overall, which is not good as I intend to take our youngest and my wife there in the near future and I don't think, certainly from my wife's point of view, who does like aeroplanes, that the trip will be much of a success.

    I have been going since I was very young, and more often then too - I still have my 1974 edition of the guide book(!), when it was just the original hall and witnessed over the years the building of the BoB, Bomber Command (BCH) and Milestones Halls as well as the movement of the Graham-White building.

    The BCH had no coherence to it anymore - I don't think it is "marketed" as such any more - but it was all disjointed and there were loads of empty spaces. I agree with the comment regarding the Vulcan, it is wedged into the corner and is not well displayed as a result. The hall does not flow from the Milestones building very well either.
    The Milestones building seemed much emptier as well than when it first opened too.

    The original main hall was okay but again some parts are quite full and others have an empty feel to them. The original entrance lobby was just a dingy space with no appeal and just the cadet glider hanging from the roof. There seemed to be a lot of places on the whole site that seemed to be empty, wasted space. I was not impressed with the Belvedere rotor resting on a pad on the cockpit glazing of the EH101 either. The original dioramas in the upper galleries - more now wasted space - when it first opened were quite good and I am sure that a modern interpretation could be made in order to interest and engage young and old alike.

    The BoB hall was always interesting when it first opened but agree it is in need of a revamp of sorts. Whilst there were signs up telling the public about the survey work going on it had a feel of a "car boot" with the bits of the aircraft plonked in all sorts of places, although my friend and I did comment that it was nice to see inside parts of the aircraft that you would not normally see.

    Outside the state of the launches were not endearing and were not a good example to be set for the public. If they were under restoration then they needed a caption to state as such. I don't believe that they should be outside either being of wooden construction although I do appreciate that they were sea going and would be out in all weathers.

    The best presented part was the Graham-White building and the WWI display. This was clear and informative, although not sure about hanging the aircraft but it worked.

    Overall the place seemed a little run down and unloved with aircraft being dusty too. The actual site of the museum also felt hemmed in by the new building going on that appeared not to take into consideration the museum as a neighbour. Information as to what the other buildings on site would have been used for and put them into context would have been nice.

    I like the suggestions on here, of the 110 with the Lancaster, the Dornier 17 with a memorial to the German losses and more themed groupings - remember the Camm "collection" in the middle of the original hall?
    The RAF has almost a century of history and it needs to be displayed better certainly here. Cosford, especially the Cold War building, certainly are a better visit.
    It is only kinky the first time...

  22. #82
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Haren, the Netherlands
    Posts
    407

    RAF Museum Hendon 1980

    This is how the BoB Hall looked like in 1980

















    Last edited by Jur; 29th July 2016 at 09:27.
    Jur

  23. #83
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    168
    Personally, I'd rather see the He 163 relocate to Cosford than the Ju 88 if airframes are being shuffled.

    Nice pictures...

  24. #84
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    609
    Excellent set of photos Jur. Just as they should be displayed. No clutter, no special effect lighting and no pointless "info" banners hanging from the roof.

  25. #85
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,232
    I quite like the 1980's display

  26. #86
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Haren, the Netherlands
    Posts
    407
    Quote Originally Posted by CADman View Post
    Just as they should be displayed. No clutter, no special effect lighting and no pointless "info" banners hanging from the roof.
    Just my feeling CADman; I never was a fan of the gloomy display with effect spotlights.
    Jur

  27. #87
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Just S of Stansted TMZ Fairsted
    Posts
    3,473
    I like the 1980s look but no good and not exciting enough for todays armchair kids, it needs to have a screen.
    I remember it like that
    SMOKE SMOKE GO!
    TA out

  28. #88
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    London
    Posts
    573
    Tony C

    Wittering is still an active RAF base, admittedly they only have Tutors flying from there now. Its also the transport and logistic hub.

    Perhaps you meant RAF Lyneham or Cottesmore which have gone to the Army, which given the size of them means they can likely expand as opposed to whatever they were in before.

    Lyneham airfield is now covered in solar panels. As is the now sold off RAF Coltishall.

    And I don't think the cash strapped MoD would really want to stick the Hendon into a soon to close site they can make cash from for the government really (Mildenhall and Alconbury for example)

    Tim

  29. #89
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    156
    I agree with TonyC it would be great to join Hendon, Cosford and Stafford all on one site. It would also be good if that site was home to the BBMF and possibly the Reds as well, an active airfield if only on limited scale is a bigger draw than as others have said a collection of statics no matter what there significance. Just my opinion.

    Roger

  30. #90
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Irthlingborough
    Posts
    313
    Quote Originally Posted by Binbrook 01 View Post
    Wittering is still an active RAF base, admittedly they only have Tutors flying from there now. Its also the transport and logistic hub.

    Perhaps you meant RAF Lyneham or Cottesmore which have gone to the Army

    Tim
    Thanks for the correction Tim, my only excuse is that being of a certain age, my memory is not ....

    What was I saying!

    Well, you get the idea
    Tony

    ...and pray that there's intelligent life somewhere up in Space cos there's bugg*r all down here on Earth!

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

 

- Part of the    Network -

KEY AERO AVIATION NEWS

MAGAZINES

AVIATION FORUM

SHOP

 

WEBSITES