Royal Air Force Museum, London

photograph of replica Hurricane and Spitfire outside the RAF Museum
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Wing your way over to a wonderful collection of aircraft, interactives, medals, uniforms, film shows and memorabilia on display and trace the story of the RAF and aviation itself.

Visit the awe-inspiring sound and light show that takes you back in time to the Battle of Britain. The Aeronauts Interactive Centre offers hands-on entertainment and education for all ages and includes cockpit controls, co-ordination tests, engine lifting, air speed, drop zone, pilot testing and more.

Take your visit to the next dimension by entering the Museum's 4D Theatre and discover how it feels to glide amongst the clouds. Don't forget to explore the Grahame-White Watch Office, the museum's latest permanent exhibition, which will transport you back to the pioneering days of flight at Hendon during the Edwardian period.

The onsite museum shop is packed with models, toys and gift items as well as exclusive magazines, books and videos. There is also a cafe and licensed restaurant and picnic area to take care of catering needs. Pay and Display Parking available.

A FREE, fun and fantastic day out for everyone.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

10am - 6pm [last entry 5:30pm]

Admission charges

Admission is FREE to the Museum.
A car parking charge is payable.

Getting there

If you’re travelling to the Museum by road, the Museum is signposted within easy reach of the A5, A41, M1 (junction 4 southbound) and North Circular A406 roads. Just follow the brown and white tourist signs.

If you’re using SatNav please input our road name, “Grahame Park Way” not our postcode, as this has been incorrectly indexed on some systems. If your system will not accept Grahame Park Way, please enter the postcode NW9 5QW. This will direct you to the small industrial estate next to the Museum.

If you’re visiting the Museum by public transport please take the Edgware Branch of the Northern Line to Colindale tube station, the Museum is only a short walk along Grahame Park Way.

Alternatively, you can take the Thames Link to Mill Hill Broadway, and catch bus number 303 to the Museum, which also runs from outside Colindale Tube Station. This service will drop you directly outside the Museum's main gates.

Additional info

Research Department open to the public by appointment only. Please contact the Department in the first instance to arrange an appointment to meet with a curator.

Collection details

Archives, Aviation, Costume and Textiles, Personalities, Science and Technology, Social History, Weapons and War

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
An Artist's impression of what the new exhibition will look like

First World War in the Air

  • 4 December 2014 — 31 December 2020 *on now

Eleven years after the first powered flight, aviation emerged as a force capable of changing the face of battle. In 1914 the Royal Flying Corps numbered just 1,500 people. By 1918, when the Royal Air Force was created, this had grown to more than 205,000. The full strategic value of air power had become all too evident - both on the battlefield and on the Home Front.

This compelling story of the First World War in the Air will be revealed in a new exhibition in our Claude Grahame-White Hangar

Discover the vital work of the Service men and women on the ground as well as the changing roles of those in the air as the essential use of 'eyes in the sky' for reconnaissance was complemented by the introduction of new technologies for bombing and fighting high above the ground.

Many personal artefacts including medals, letters and uniforms will be displayed alongside the finest collection of First World War aircraft bringing both moving and inspiring stories to life - and ensuring that the bravery and sacrifice of these aviation pioneers will never be forgotten.

Admission

Free Entry

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/opening-of-first-world-war-in-the-air-exhibition/

Venture Adventure: 75 years of the Air Training Corps

Venture Adventure: 75 years of the Air Training Corps

  • 8 February 2016 — 12 February 2017 *on now

Generations of young people with a passion for aviation and adventure have been enjoying the range of opportunities offered by the Air Training Corps for the past 75 years.

The RAF Museum is delighted to present temporary exhibitions in London and Cosford to celebrate the ATC’s 75th anniversary produced in partnership with the Air Training Corps.

The exhibitions explore the history of the organisation and the exciting activities and training undertaken by Air Cadets today.

The London exhibition opens on 8 February and features original artefacts from the Museum’s collection as well as offering the chance to sit in the cockpit of a Grob Viking glider.

This exhibition will be open daily in the Museum's Art Gallery, which can be found on the Upper Level of Historic Hangars.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Free Entry

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/venture-adventure-75-years-of-the-air-training-co/

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Battle of Britain 75th Anniversary Commemorative Mosaic

Battle of Britain 75th Anniversary Commemorative Mosaic

  • 19 September 2015 — 18 September 2016 *on now

A mosaic made up of thousands of images from members of the public to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain will be placed on display in the Bomber Hall of the Royal Air Force Museum from 19 of September 2015.

The mosaic is of an iconic photograph of Hurricane and Spitfire fighters in close formation and encapsulates the spirit of the Battle of Britain.

The initial mosaic was composed of RAF archive images of Battle of Britain personnel and equipment, repeated numerous times, with any images uploaded by the public replacing one of those repeats. In total 60,000 images were used to create the mosaic, which measures at 8 metres across by 5.34 metres deep.

It will be on hung next to our Airfield Chapel in Bomber Hall and will be on display for 12 months.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Free Entry

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/battle-of-britain-75th-anniversary-commemorative-m/

The Big Screen at the Royal Air Force Museum London

The Big Screen : Wimbledon Fortnight

  • 27 June — 9 July 2016 *on now

Summer 2016 offers an unprecedented season of sport and to ensure that you don't miss the main highlights whilst visiting us we are bringing the Big Screen to our Royal Wessex Cafe for Wimbledon fortnight. So you will have the opportunity to view all the big battles of the day from the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club up to and including the Men's Final on 9 July.

What could be more quintessentially British than cheering on your favourite player whilst eating Strawberries and Cream from our Royal Wessex Cafe in the shadow of a Spitfire and the Queen's Royal Wessex Helicopter?

The Big Screen will be showing matches daily from 11 am until the Museum closes at 6pm.

So pull up a chair, order a pot of Earl Grey with a couple of strawberry cream scones and settle back to see whether Andy Murray can successfully defend his title in 2016.

Seating in the Royal Wessex Cafe is on a strictly first come first served basis

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

This experience is free of charge.

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/the-big-screen-wimbledon-fornight/

The Red Baron

The Red Baron

  • 27 — 31 July 2016

Manfred von Richthofen was one of the First World War's aerial superstars. An aristocrat and huntsman, he loved flight and trained himself to be a superb air-borne killer. He was never seen with a girl, though - or hardly ever. Annoyed with being pestered by his comrades in arms, he calls on Coco. She one of the girls in a house near the front...where all the squadron goes.

But all Manfred does is talk about planes and guns - and shooting down enemy flyers.

For most of us, the First World War means trench warfare. But in 1915, for the first time in history, young men were soaring across the skies, fighting in flimsy machines for country and personal glory.

This play is about them.....and one man's astonishing change of mind.

Suitable for

  • 14-15
  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

Admission charges for this play are £8 per person. This performance is suitable for visitors aged 14 and above.

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/the-red-baron-play/

The Big Screen

The Big Screen : Rio Olympics

  • 5 — 22 August 2016

Where have the last 4 years gone? It only seems like yesterday that we were cheering Mo Farrah, Jessica Ennis and Team GB on Super Saturday as the team romped home to its largest ever collection of medals in the modern Olympics.

Last time around we showed our visitors the highlights on our Bomber Hall screens. This year by popular demand we will be showing both the highlights and real time competition on our Big Screen which will be located just by our Royal Wessex Cafe.

The Big Screen will be on daily from 10 am until 6pm throughout the Rio Olympics - giving you the opportunity to catch up with your favourite competitor or cheer on your favourite team whilst enjoying a relaxing cup of tea or refreshing cold drink with a sandwich or a snack in one of the Cafe's comfortable chairs.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/the-big-screen-the-rio-olympics/

The Wings Series

Wings Series : Live Reading by Author

  • 6 August 2016 11-11:45am, 1-1:45pm, 3-3:45pm

On 6 August 2016, acclaimed author Tom Palmer will be reading from and talking about his new book – WINGS : Typhoon - underneath the Typhoon at the RAF Museum London in a series of sessions at 11 am, 1pm, and 3pm.

The Wings series is centered around four children at a football summer camp, who find themselves propelled back in time. If they can learn how to fly the great RAF planes – the Sopwith Camel, Spitfire and Typhoon, history will lead them on a flightpath back to the present. The books were inspired by Tom and his daughter making an Airfix kit of a Lancaster Bomber two summers ago. Each book also comes with a simple model plane you can make yourself!

Tom is writing the WINGS books with help from the RAF Museum as part of his role as Children’s Writer In Residence. In the lead up to the Royal Air Force centenary in 2018, Tom will be working with the museum's visitors to help them get the best out of their experience. He will be offering advice on writing short stories which help visitors engage with the museum's collections.

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13
  • 14-15

Admission

This is a free activity. No need to book. Just turn up on the day.

Take Part in the RAF Museum's Spitfire 10k

The London Spitfire 10k

  • 3 September 2016 9-11am

Commemorate the 76th Anniversary of the Battle of Britain in style with this brand new event starting and finishing in the magnificent surroundings of the RAF Museum in Colindale.

The race begins in the shadow of one of the RAF Spitfires and takes you on a special journey, including a section through the Bomber Hall and around the iconic Avro Lancaster Bomber, before leaving the museum for two loops of flat road course.

Your finish will be commemorated with an exclusive Spitfire medal. This race also includes:

- Prizes/trophies for leading runners
- Chip timing
- Toilets
- Onsite parking (pay and display)
- Refreshments


RUN IN STYLE
Why not do something different and do the Spitfire 10K in 1940s dress? Don your victory curls or flying jacket and run this event in style! All participants are encouraged to dress up but of course this is optional. Need some ideas for your outfit? We've put together a handy collage for you. Click the link here for further information http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/spitfire-10/

ENTRY FEES
£20.50
Running club members / Museum members / Armed Forces Personnel

£22.50
Standard entry fee

£22.50
On the day entry fee

ONLINE ENTRIES
Online entries are now open via 'Book It Zone'. Please click here to enter yourself online - https://royalairforcemuseum.digitickets.co.uk/event/1353266?catID=5272

POSTAL ENTRIES
To enter yourself by post please click here to download the entry form. If you can't download the form then we would be happy to email you a copy, to request an e-version please email whatson@rafmuseum.org
http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/documents/Events/SPITFIRE_FORM_2016.pdf

Please send all postal entries to the Events Manager at the Royal Air Force Museum London, Grahame Park Way, Colindale, London, NW9 5LL. Please provide an A4 or A5 SAE envelope.

Please make all cheques payable to 'RAF Museum', please do not send cash in the post.

ENQUIRIES
If you have an enquiry about the venue please contact the RAF Museum by calling 0208 358 4997 or email whatson@rafmuseum.org

If you have a query about the race please call the race organisers on 01797 230009.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

ENTRY FEES
£20.50
Running club members / Museum members / Armed Forces Personnel

£22.50
Standard entry fee

£22.50
On the day entry fee

Website

http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/london/whats-going-on/events/spitfire-10/

Getting there

If you’re travelling to the Museum by road, the Museum is signposted within easy reach of the A5, A41, M1 (junction 4 southbound) and North Circular A406 roads. Just follow the brown and white tourist signs.

If you’re using SatNav please input our road name, “Grahame Park Way” not our postcode, as this has been incorrectly indexed on some systems. If your system will not accept Grahame Park Way, please enter the postcode NW9 5QW. This will direct you to the small industrial estate next to the Museum.

If you’re visiting the Museum by public transport please take the Edgware Branch of the Northern Line to Colindale tube station, the Museum is only a short walk along Grahame Park Way.

Alternatively, you can take the Thames Link to Mill Hill Broadway, and catch bus number 303 to the Museum, which also runs from outside Colindale Tube Station. This service will drop you directly outside the Museum's main gates.

Royal Air Force Museum, London
Grahame Park Way
Colindale
London
Greater London
NW9 5LL
England

Website

www.rafmuseum.org/london

E-mail

Groups

groups@rafmuseum.org

Public Events

whatson@rafmuseum.org

Department of Research & Information Services

research@rafmuseum.org

School & Scout Trips

learning-london@rafmuseum.org

Telephone

Main Switchboard Number

020 8205 2266

Fax

020 8200 1751

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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