The outside airliner display is virtually a catalogue of post-war British airliners. Starting with the wonderful Concorde. Unfortunately we didn’t have time to do the film and visit to the plane interior – and that was an extra to our admission.
The VC10. This one finished its career as the Sultan of Oman’s personal transport. The interior was extremely well appointed – though quite basic compared with today’s executive jets, and even 1st class airline travel.
You could take the captain’s seat, though I’m not sure what that expression is all about!
VC10, Vanguard, and I think a BAC 1-11.
Vanguard, Varsity (RAF crew trainer) and Viking.
A replica Vimy, that is (or at least was till recently) airworthy. Apart from being a WW1 bomber, these planes completed the first N-S Africa flight, and the first UK-Australia flight.
One of the hangers contains a display illustrating aircraft construction. This is a WW1 BE2 replica.
A Supermarine Schneider Trophy seaplane. First of a string of planes that eventually grew into the Spitfire.
Wellington WW2 bomber. R for Robert was salvaged from Loch Ness, having been located by a team of monster hunters.
There’s also a replica Wellington fuselage to explore. The geodetic framework was new at the time, and not only made the Wellington a versatile workhorse used throughout WW2, but made it very resistant to enemy attack.
Three generation of fighters – Sopwith Camel (replica), Hawker Hurricane, and behind, Hawker Hunter.
The elegant Hawker Hart, from the 1930’s. An all metal biplane, that was still in service at the start of WW2, and containing ideas that would evolve into the Hurricane.
Hawker Hunter. One of the more successful post-WW2 military aircraft.
Elsewhere, a display of hardware including this Barnes-Wallis bouncing bomb prototype.
And his early ‘Tall Boy’/’Big Boy’ earthquake bomb. I think the display case in the foreground implies that Barnes-Wallis had been involved in developing ideas from airships to the Swallow flying wing aircraft – not that we should try and swallow an airship.
Next post – buses.