Friday, 22 November 2013

RAF Cosford – Museum Visit

Last week, I met up with my brother Mike and we drove down to the RAF Museum, Cosford. The weather was foul so fortunately we were mostly in the hanger areas.

We started in the Restoration Hanger, not usually open, so it was pretty busy with interested and knowledgeable visitor and the Volunteers/Museum Staff doing the restoration work.

Our immediate attention was drawn to the Vickers Wellington Bomber – in pieces – being lovingly restored. The Wellington has a special significance for our family as it was the plane our Father flew towards the end of the war when he was with Coastal Command.

Surprisingly, there are only 2 remaining Wellingtons left – this one is the Mark T.X MF628 which first flew in May 1944 and was later converted in 1948 to a navigation trainer hence the T.X designation.
The aluminium wing section – minus it's fabric covering
The fuselage section with some repairs to the covering
Rear gun turret
Nose gun turret

For those interested, check out this link to a visit by an enthusiast.

To my delight, there was also a boat (!) in the shed.
RAF Range Safety Launch 1667, built in 1956
Timber framing

Twin screws – no engines to be seen though!

Another plane in restoration that caught our eye was the sister WW2 medium bomber to the Vickers, a Handley Page Hampden.

  Hampden P1344 – shot down in Finland in September 1942
Bullet holes still in situ
Part of the tail – shot through
A new section fabricated in aluminium

After a well-earned coffee and buttie, we went onto the War Planes hanger.

The iconic Spitfire
My brother stands next to a Consolidated PBY Catalina Flying Boat. Our Father, having learned to fly in the USA, flew one of these from Newfoundland to Ireland, I think in 1942/3

The amazing Harrier Jump Jet

We also saw the Dornier Bomber that has recently been lifted from the sea and is being washed down in tunnel tents – unfortunately, my camera ran out of battery power!
See this link for interest.

It was a really good day out – albeit wet and cold! It was good to spend time with my brother Mike as well. There is still more to see and hopefully a further visit next year?!

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