Midland Air Museum

Midland Air Museum
Coventry Airport
Baginton
Warwickshire
CV8 3AZ
England

Website

www.midlandairmuseum.org.uk/

E-mail

midlandairmuseum@aol.com

Telephone

01203 301 033

Fax

01203 301 033

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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Our exhibits range from the magnificent Avro Vulcan bomber through more than 30 other historic aircraft, both civil and military, aero engines and other artefacts, to a wide range of memorabilia. We're particularly proud of our collection of material relating to Sir Frank Whittle, the Coventry-born engineer who designed the jet engine which made modern high-speed aircraft and economical air travel possible. The Museum houses a heritage centre dedicated to the memory of Sir Frank and his marvellous inventive genius.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

April to October from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM (6:00 PM on Sundays and Bank Holidays)
November to March from 10:30 AM to 4:30 PM.
Visits at other times can be arranged by prior appointment.

Closed: Christmas Day and Boxing Day

Admission charges

Adult £4.00
Child (5-16 years) £2.25
Child (under 5 years) Free
OAP/Student £3.25
Family (2 adults & 2 children) £10.50
Adult season ticket £12.50
Child/OAP/Student season ticket £6.50

Additional info

We have a well-stocked shop selling model kits, books, magazines, paintings, prints etc. as well as refreshments - take a break during your tour, have a bite to eat and continue at your leisure! Of course we have toilets, including disabled facilities. Disabled access to the museum is generally good, though the raised gallery and aircraft interiors are unfortunately not accessible to wheelchair users. We have a car park in front of the museum with free parking for up to 100 cars and plenty of room for coaches too.

The Museum is ideally suited to educational visits by school parties or other organised groups; our Education Centre, guided tours and worksheet packs are available by prior arrangement. These have been tailored to the requirements of the National Curriculum.

We have a wide range of aircraft representing those types manufactured and operated in the local area, most notably the products of Armstrong Whitworth which was based in Baginton, right on the museum's doorstep. As well as their own designs Armstrong Whitworth built aircraft from other companies in the Hawker Siddeley Group including the Hawker Sea Hawk and Hunter, and the Gloster Meteor. What is now Coventry Airport was once RAF Baginton, a fighter station during World War II used principally by number 308 (Polish) Squadron in 1940 - 1941. As such we have a number of WWII related exhibits within the museum, including the rare Beaufighter cockpit section and Whitley remains.

Local aviation history is strongly featured by a Wings Over Coventry gallery, showcasing products from such manufacturers as Armstrong Whitworth and Gloster. There is also a wealth of Coventry-produced aircraft and other exhibits dominated by the giant Armstrong Whitworth Argosy freighter. A number of the museum's aircraft were operated in the local area such as the de Havilland Vampire F.1 of 605 Squadron (the only Mk.1 Vampire left in the UK and one of only two in the world).

However, this is not just a museum exhibiting local aircraft - there is a truly international collection here, telling the story of the jet engine and its use throughout the world, ranging from the now rare Swedish SAAB J 29 Tunnan, the first post-war European swept-wing jet fighter; the Mystère IVA, the first French swept-wing fighter; the English Electric Lightning, the only all-British supersonic fighter, to the mighty American McDonnell F-4C Phantom II (our example is a genuine MiG-killer!).

A number of the aircraft have steps up to the cockpit area so you can view the cockpit area or get a higher viewpoint to take pictures of nearby aircraft from. The museum is split into several areas; the main hangar (housing several aircraft including the Tunnan, Vampire F.1, T-33 and a number of displays), the Robin hangar (housing a changing variety of restoration projects), the storage area (housing the Vampire T.11, dismantled Phantom etc.)

Last, but most definitely not least, the large external display area has the majority of the aircraft (and an anti-aircraft gun; unfortunately not in firing condition, or it would make a useful bird scarer!). The external display area also gives good views of operations at Coventry airport; there is a fence between us and the airport but there are several high vantage points within the museum area. Many of the external exhibits are opened up when the weather allows - if you have any partcular requests, please ask!

Within the main hangar we showcase not only aircraft but a number of displays including the Wings Over Coventry and Sir Frank Whittle Jet Heritage Centre, as well as supporting exhibits. These include a collection of aero engines (such as the Sapphire, Avon, Stentor, Double Mamba), missiles (Red Dean, Firestreak) and parts from historic aircraft such as the Bristol T.188 stainless steel research aircraft.

Collection details

Aviation, Land Transport, Weapons and War

Key artists and exhibits

  • Sir Frank Whittle
  • Coventry aviation history
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