Visiting Duxford

Monday 5th June 2017

Venue : Imperial War Museum Duxford, Cambridge

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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.

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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)

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Matt by Fighter Aircraft

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.

Flight

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IWM Duxford , Cambridge, 5/6/2017

 

For a brief moment today,

looking around the hangar in Cambridge

I got to see the marvels of flight first hand

Great planes – from early pioneers to new planes and even spaceflight

Hoped to see something special – and I wasn’t disappointed

Tomorrow – i’ll take a look at what I captured

 

 

Fashion on the Ration

Salford 5th January 2017

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This afternoon, I’ve been helping out at Imperial War Museum North just over the bridge from Salford, by the banks of the Manchester ship canal.

Regular readers will know I help out with the computers on the “Your History” information point and throughout the Main exhibition space.  Well, Today I’ve been directing visitors by the special gallery and giving assistance where necessary.

The special gallery covers the time in British history where clothes were rationed, in order to preserve fuel and resources during war time.

As part of the exhibition – a special handling collection has been created, by some of the volunteers with help from the museum staff.  This is shown on our Information station, where volunteers and veterans talk about specific objects and the tales behind them.

Image result for ww2 utility clothing

 

New Day of Vollying

Monday Afternoon saw me returning back over the Bridge to the Home of the Imperial War Museum in the North, on the Trafford side of the Manchester Ship Canal

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Today has seen me on the Information point Handling trolley, where visitors from all around the country have been able to look at objects and pick them up as the volunteers tell a little bit about the items the visitor is holding and a little about its origins.

These range from a helmet used by the armed forces during the battle of the somme, which was later used in world war II, to a babies gas mask used during world war ii as protection against potential gas attack.

In addition we direct and explain how to go around the big area that makes up the main exhibition space, which holds objects from World war I to Modern day

The Trolley is always of interest to visitors both young and old, because of the interactive nature of the exhibits.  Schoolchildren enjoy hearing about the objects on display.

Unfinished

Unfinished

During the sackings of Rome and Greece

The builders fled the construction site

Leaving the temple and markets to birds

As angry protesters had their words

The wreckage that built up was left in the sand

till one day a man from museum had plans

to recover the buildings located by sea

and learn of the heritage of the site for free

A Busman’s Holiday – In Cosford

Old Trafford, Manchester , 5th August

Time        :   Zero Nine Hundred Hours.

Location :   Imperial War Museum North, Old Trafford, Manchester

Destination : RAF Museum, Cosford, Shropshire

 

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Bill by the RAF Twin-propped Bomber – and it wasn’t raining!

 

 

Having done the Great Orme (see here) Bill Nigel and me meet up for a trip to the Royal Air Force Museum in Cosford, Shropshire.

Travelling down the M6 from Manchester and then the M42 we reached our destination, despite queues and roadworks.

Upon arriving at RAF Cosford, we enjoy a bite to eat in the form of soup and a roll in the café.  I had the Tomato (V.Nice!)

Then we hit the Galleries.  Each hangar told the tale of planes that flew in the first and second world wars, as well as some of the individuals that took part in their operation.  A mini timeline, similar to that of IWM North’s Main exhibition space (only a lot smaller) told the history of the RAF from its earliest time as the Royal Flying Corps all the way to the role played in more recent conflict in the Middle east.

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Experimental Aircraft

 

I particularly enjoyed the Test flight Gallery.  This explained the developmental process behind Planes like the Spitfire and the Harrier Jump Jet .

 

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Nigel taking shots of the aircraft….

 

War in the Air had both Allied and German Planes on display as we read how they came to be, and their roles in the Battle of Britain and beyond.  I’m pleased to say I saw a Supermarine Spitfire up close whilst walking round the exhibit, and the one I saw was the oldest surviving model in the world

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All planes have to have something to make them tick – and Cosford’s collection delves deep into many of the engines that got them going.

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I also viewed the artillery used by the RAF Regiment – The Air force soldiers who are assigned to protect the airfields.

It was a most enjoyable day – a pin, bookmark and mug – as well as my photos will remind me of viewing some great pieces of aviation history….just need to get the photos off the camera now 🙂

Something for Historical scholars to spot – my pic shows a statue of Lenin in the distance – but can you spot the other Russian leaders in this pic ?

 

 

A Busman’s Holiday (with a Lancastrian Twist)

22nd June 2016

Today I took my camera on the tram to Bury, and met up with fellow Imperial War Museum (North) volunteers at the regimental museum of the Lancashire Fusiliers.

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The Lancashire Fusiliers fought in battles all over the world during their time as a regiment in the United Kingdom, and this museum documented some of the stories as well as the history of the regiment.  The bronze globe reminded me of IWM North’s building – “the shattered globe” as the wire frame showed all the places where the regiment fought in conflict.

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During world war one , and the Gallipoli campaign,  Six Victoria Crosses were issued to men of the Lancashire fusiliers to honour the regiment for their bravery.  They’re known as the “Six VCs before breakfast”.  A painting depicting the scene is on display by this picture.

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For those who needed to know about the army and its structures – a helpful guide was on hand to show how the companies of men were formed.

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In addition to the Uniforms – several weapons were on display, such as the Rifles used by the men of the fusiliers.  In addition to our walk around, we were given an interesting talk by a member of the fusiliers who now works at the museum.

The Fusiliers are now part of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.  This museum honoured those who fought and served in the regiment.

There is a memorial garden in the grounds of the museum containing the local cenotaph, whilst research facilities are available to search through museum archives.

 

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Lancashire Fusiliers Arms