Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Go-ahead for Jet Age Museum at Gloucestershire Airport

15 February 2011

Just £80,000 is now needed for a museum commemorating an outstanding part of the nation’s aviation history to go ahead.

Gloucestershire charity Jet Age Museum is pressing ahead with building a pemanent home now that planning consent has been granted.

The all-volunteer museum’s collection of historic planes and archives can now be saved for posterity in a purpose-built museum at Gloucestershire Airport.

The airport is providing a two-acre low-rent site and the museum has already raised about £190,000 towards the estimated £270,000 cost of Phase 1. Tewkesbury Borough Council approved the planning application, with conditions, on 11 February.

Construction will now go out to tender and fundraising for the remaining £80,000 is being stepped up. Funds raised to date have come from significant donations by Rolls-Royce plc, a local charitable trust and the museum’s own members. In addition, Tewkesbury Borough Council has pledged to contribute ten per cent of money raised up to a limit of £27,000.

Jet Age Museum chairman John Lewer said: “Thanks to our group of dedicated supporters a permanent home for the museum is at last within our reach. It’s an exciting and worthwhile project - please give your support in any way you can.”

John Lewer can be contacted on 01562 69797 or by email: john.lewer@virginmedia.com
See also Jet Age Museum’s website at www.jetagemuseum.org


The jet engine was designed by British engineering genius Sir Frank Whittle (1907–1996). His son Ian is a patron of Jet Age Museum.

Britain’s first jet plane, the Gloster E28/39, powered by Whittle’s revolutionary invention, first left the ground on 8 April 1941 at the Gloster factory-airfield between Gloucester and Cheltenham.

Its official first flight was at RAF Cranwell, Lincolnshire, on 15 May 1941.

The original aeroplane can be seen in London’s Science Museum.

Jet Age Museum volunteers have built a full-size replica which can be seen by appointment at their Brockworth restoration workshop, close to the factory where the original was designed and built.

Three more of the museum’s Gloster-built aircraft are on view: examples of Britain’s first jet fighter, the Meteor, and the Cold War-era Javelin are at Gloucestershire Airport and a fully-detailed reproduction 1925 Gamecock biplane is at Brockworth with the replica of the first jet.

Ongoing restoration projects include rebuilding an RAF Gladiator biplane which crashed in Norway in 1940 and a late World War Two Gloster-built Hawker Typhoon.

Other aircraft, engines and exhibits, together with the museum’s outstanding document and photographic archive, are currently in store awaiting completion of the new building.

Jet Age Museum is an all-volunteer registered charity (number 297818) with more than 200 members. Members meet at the Tithe Barn Centre, Brockworth Court, Court Road, Brockworth GL3 4QU on the second Wednesday of every month at 7.30 pm. Newcomers are always welcome.


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