An early morning start at IWM North on Monday, as we met up with fellow volunteers and staff from the other branches at IWM Duxford for Volunteers week.
We travelled south through the Midlands on our journey, stopping off on some familiar services on the M6 and M1… the route usually adopted when I visit my relatives there. It was a bit rainy on the way there, but I was looking forward to visiting Duxford. Due to that branch holding most of the museums Aircraft Collection
We arrived at Duxford’s Entrance around about noon, and then after a short repast, we all entered the main hall, where the chairman of the imperial war museum welcomed us all and the ceremonies for the volunteer awards commenced.
I received my award for “Developing in a Role” from the chairman – and heard my Vollie Manager deliver a wonderful (more than a ) few words on why i’d won it!
How I started as a guide, then doing object handling and family history….
I did whisper at one point….”Ta boss! you can stop now….!!!” (sic)
After the awards ceremony, we took a look around the hangar and the various activities on display, this included seeing how concorde dipped its nose, to sending messages by morse code – to walking on board a Lancaster bomber. I enjoyed walking round the RAF Fleet, and got a really good view of the planes from the top deck of the gallery.
This is a picture of a Barrage Balloon, It was used (alongside many others) to provide cover against enemy bombing attacks on Britain during world war II.
Despite its size and volume these balloons were terribly lightweight and required teams of operators to anchor them and keep them in position.
They were used in areas of strategic importance , such as Runways , Railways and Docks. The port of Manchester was considered a key target for the enemy airplanes in World War II because of the vast amount of goods coming through it.
The one you see on here , is part of Imperial War Museum North’s Large object collection where the balloon operators tale is one of many displayed throughout the Museum’s Main Exhibition Space