Links to Aviation Museums

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#21 Post by 603DX » Sun May 12, 2019 5:15 pm

The Shoreham Aircraft Museum is in the Kent village of Shoreham, nestling in the beautiful Darent Valley. No connection at all to the airport at Shoreham, West Sussex.

Many of the exhibits were recovered by local aviation groups, from known crash locations during the Battle of Britain period, when large numbers of Luftwaffe and RAF aircraft were shot down along the River Darent Valley. There is also a chalk board bearing the signatures of several well-known RAF pilots, on loan from the famous "White Hart" pub near Biggin Hill. Al Deere, "Screwball" Beurling, and Brian Kingcombe are among the names included.

http://www.shoreham-aircraft-museum.co.uk

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#22 Post by 4mastacker » Thu May 16, 2019 7:23 pm

I would like to add this wonderful place.

The de Havilland Museum

Just off the M25 at London Colney and well worth a visit. I paid an unscheduled visit last year when my car started playing up just as I was approaching J22 and I needed to let the engine cool down. Brilliant museum with a very friendly crew.
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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#23 Post by 603DX » Fri May 17, 2019 2:29 pm

I support 4mastacker's recommendation above, for the London Colney de Havilland Museum. I have visited there at least twice in recent years, and found it to be particularly engrossing. The close proximity to the Salisbury Hall property, from the adjacent unprepared fields of which the first Mosquito prototypes took off, makes the museum's location pretty unique.

Two points of interest for me: I purchased a splendid print in the shop, titled "Mosquito. The Wooden Wonder of Salisbury Hall", by Robert Tomlin, at a reasonable price. Signed by John "Cat's Eyes" Cunningham no less, who was very familiar with the Mossy, and was actually based at RAF West Malling in Kent during WW2, just a few miles from my home as a young toddler, keen on aircraft even then!

And also, there is/was a complete family tree on display of the de Havilland family, including Geoffrey and Olivia, who of course was a major star of the famous movie "Gone With the Wind". She and other family members had close connections with the island of Guernsey, and despite her fairly advanced years, she returned to the island from the USA to take a prominent part in a commemorative parade around the island's roads. My own family connections with Guernsey made that of special interest to me.

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#24 Post by Capetonian » Fri May 17, 2019 3:14 pm

My own family connections with Guernsey made that of special interest to me.
Coincidentally I am sitting in St Peter Port as I read this!
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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#25 Post by izod tester » Fri May 17, 2019 4:49 pm

It is, or was, possible to meet Blacksheep at the de Havilland museum. He certainly used to be a volunteer there.

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#26 Post by G-CPTN » Fri May 17, 2019 5:23 pm

izod tester wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 4:49 pm
It is, or was, possible to meet Blacksheep at the de Havilland museum. He certainly used to be a volunteer there.
I have been to the DH museum four times without meeting Blacksheep.

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#27 Post by 603DX » Sat May 18, 2019 4:47 pm

Further to my post #21 above, I've now found the full list of all signatures chalked on that former blackout screen. In addition to the three I recalled from memory, here are a few more, several of them rather unexpected!

S/L Neville Duke (later the famous test pilot)
S/L Tony Bartley (married to the beautiful actress Deborah Kerr)
G/Cpt 'Sailor' Malan
W/Cdr Geoffrey Page
W/Cdr Stanford Tuck
M/RAF The Lord Tedder (!)
S/L Jan Zurakowski (later the well known Meteor test pilot)
W/Cdr Paddy Barthrop
W/Cdr 'Grubby' Grice (the C.O. of Biggin Hill)

I spent quite a while, studying those illustrious names on the prominently displayed board ... ^:)^

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#28 Post by G-CPTN » Sat May 18, 2019 10:14 pm

On a point of order, were the signatures effected when the subjects were of lower rank rather than what they later achieved?

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#29 Post by 603DX » Sun May 19, 2019 10:20 am

G-CPTN wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 10:14 pm
On a point of order, were the signatures effected when the subjects were of lower rank rather than what they later achieved?
No way of telling, as far as I know.

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#30 Post by G-CPTN » Sun May 19, 2019 10:39 am

603DX wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 10:20 am
G-CPTN wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 10:14 pm
On a point of order, were the signatures effected when the subjects were of lower rank rather than what they later achieved?
No way of telling, as far as I know.
I presume that the signatures were simply their 'civilian' names and not accompanied by their military rank.

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Re: Links to Aviation Museums

#31 Post by 603DX » Sun May 19, 2019 11:22 am

G-CPTN wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 10:39 am
603DX wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 10:20 am
G-CPTN wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 10:14 pm
On a point of order, were the signatures effected when the subjects were of lower rank rather than what they later achieved?
No way of telling, as far as I know.
I presume that the signatures were simply their 'civilian' names and not accompanied by their military rank.
If you click on the museum link I gave in post #21, the framed board is the last image on it, with the RAF Ensign to its left, which came from the original chapel at Biggin Hill. As you presumed, all signatures on it are their 'civilian' names without ranks given. "Al" Deere's and Brian Kingcombe's signatures are prominently visible half-way down, towards the left, and "Screwball" Beurling's is fourth below Kingcombe's, but a bit fainter. After the war the preserved board was unveiled by "Sailor" Malan at the White Hart, from which it was transferred to the Shoreham museum. A full list of names, ranks, military decorations and squadrons is available there, from my copy of which I was quoting. Clearly, someone has done a lot of research to produce all this!

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