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TAKING FLIGHT: Shenley aircraft museum’s new million-pound development now fully operational

 Published on: 23rd November 2023   |   By: Bryn Holmes   |   Category: Uncategorized

The de Havilland Aircraft Museum in Shenley has now fully opened its newest development- and is looking to the future for further attractions.

Following a £1.9 million grant from the Lottery Heritage Fund five years ago, and extra match funding bringing that total up to £3 million, the dedicated aviation history site was able to open up the Sir Geoffrey de Havilland Hangar in 2020, with it now fully operational.

The museum’s president, Philip Birtles, said: “We’re now able to bring most of our aircraft under cover, which is essential, and we now have a really modern area on display.

“Our new building features a mezzanine floor where we can have events of up to 80 people. That is helping us earn enough money to keep this place going, because normal punters coming through the doors don’t pay all the bills.”

The site, which is nearly entirely volunteer-run, was Britain’s first aviation museum when it opened in November 1959. It is dedicated to the original prototype and restoration of the de Havilland Mosquito, one of several planes that saw action in the Second World War.

However, the museum isn’t settling down any time soon. Philip has also revealed upcoming plans for a flight simulator for people looking to experience what it was like to fly the Mosquito themselves, and also a new exhibition on the Cold War, featuring various aircraft, rockets and missiles in their collection.

To find out more about the museum and upcoming events there, visit their website.

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