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Jet Age Museum - Gloucester


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Jet Age Museum - Gloucester. Text and pictures thanks to Tim Mansfield (theplasticsurgeon).

Jet Age Museum is located on the northern edge of Gloucestershire Airport at Staverton. Away from the mail airport complex, Jet Age is accessed from the B4063 which runs between Gloucester and Cheltenham. The museum houses an important collection of exhibits relating to Gloucestershire's aviation heritage, the industry that was its foundations, and its connection with the first British jet aircraft. Most of the displays are inside the purpose build display hall, though some are outside.

The Museum is open each Saturday and Sunday, Wednesdays during school holidays, and other specially selected heritage days. Group visits, events and other times can be arranged with the Events coordinator.

The museum welcomes modellers and photographers as any other visitors. Currently it is unable to grant any special access to exhibits. This may change in the future.

For all details of the Museum please visit their website. The museum is staffed and operated entirely by volunteers. It is free entry and parking - though donations are very gratefully received.Often overlooked but of vital importance Jet Age has the Jet and Whittle cafe where you can enjoy hot drinks, cakes and a range of other snacks - possibly served by theplasticsurgeon.

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Jet Age was founded in 1990 at Hucclecote, home of the Gloster Aircraft Company. It has re-located several times since then, until it achieve funding for the current site at Staverton. Official opening was by Captain Eric Brown on 9th May 2014.

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After the tough times of its past, the current museum situation really is the end of the rainbow.

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Arriving at the site you pass through the original GAC factory gates, saved from scrap, and donated to the museum, and restored. This really is heritage!

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The museum building was constructed and opened its doors to the public in 2013. Those aircraft plaques are from Gloucester Park, where they were neglected and abused, until rescued, donated to the museum, and restored to their former glory. There are others of GAC's piston aircraft inside the museum.

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On to the exhibits:

First a replica Gloster Gamecock "J7904", structure exposed on one side - covered on the other.

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Next the remains of a Gloster Gladiator II N5914 - complete with German bullet-hole.

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Next a replica Hurricane I V6799 - from the Battle of Britain film

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Painted in the colours of Pilot Officer Ken MacKenzie - a former Patron of Jet Age, his incident adorns the box-art of the latest 1/48 Airfix Hurricane.

And onto the outside exhibits.

First the Vulcan B2 XM569 forward fuselage, which is a very popular attraction for visitors.

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And the Trident 3B G-AWZU

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And visits to the cockpit

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Also outside but not yet restored for exhibition.

Meteor NF13. This one is a hybrid - parts from several aircraft.

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Behind that another Meteor T7.

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Meteor NF14 - WS807. Behind that another Meteor T7.

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Back inside and a very popular attraction for junior visitors is Biggles. Fully working controls - everything a real plane has.

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And for the big kids, try the Hunter F4 cockpit.

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Or the Gnat. This is a single seat procedural trainer.

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Inside but awaiting restoration a Meteor T7

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Replica E28/39, as at the first flight.

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Power Jets W2 engine.

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Meteor F8 - WH364.

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Derwent engine.

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Javelin FAW9 - WH903.

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and one of its ejection seats.

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Meteor F3 Cockpit - EE425.

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Airspeed Horsa replica under construction.

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And the locally built Unibus.

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Naturally that's just a taster, there is a lot more models, pictures, and displays - all linked in some way to Gloucestershire's Aviation Heritage.

Finally, there is a shop area selling books, toys and MODELS - mostly pertaining to the exhibits.

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