The Royal Air Force Museum's plans to develop its historic Grahame-White Factory building into a showcase for its First World War collections have received initial support of £74,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The money will be used to help the London museum develop its plans to obtain a full HLF grant of £706,300 to transform the building, which currently houses the First World War collection.
© Via Wikimedia Commons. Photo author Rwendland
Using the world-class collection of planes, letters, film and photographs, the new exhibition, called the First Air War, is due to open in time for the centenary of the conflict in 2014.
The aim is to help people understand what it was like to be involved in the earliest days of the Royal Flying Corps and how our world was changed by the technology and innovation during the war.
A public participation project has already been launched via the 100 First Air War Objects online survey, which is inviting people to nominate items to be displayed.
The development will also help local people to understand how much their neighbourhood changed as a result of the development of the aerodrome and aircraft industry in Colindale during the First World War.
A digitisation project is also underway which will make important historic documents from the First World War - such as casualty records and personnel lists - digitally available to the public.
Peter Dye, Director of the Royal Air Force Museum, said the grant would enable the museum to “showcase a larger and more diverse range of collections”
“Our new interpretation strategy will help people to learn about the importance of the first war in the air and to understand the lives of all those who participated.”