Cockpit cosmetic work


The project has been invited to create a display for an upcoming RAF centenary themed livery dinner in central London, of particular interest was the tubular frame cockpit section and the cutaway Napier Sabre engine, donated by BAHAAT. The dinner is an excellent opportunity for the project to network with some very influential individuals, spreading the word about what is being done, and there is of course the chance that some funding may be secured or discussed. With this in mind, some of our dedicated volunteers have been carrying out a bit of work…

As this represents the chance of a huge boost for the project, work has begun to cosmetically refurbish and enhance the sections going to the event, along with designing the artwork required for the back drop and banners. Normally this is something that Trustee Sam would take the lead in, coordinating all the various factors, but this opportunity fell at an incredibly busy time for him, with a property renovation, five weeks of courses and being out of the country for three weeks up until one week before the event, and so he was not able to be as involved as he would have liked.

This is where some key members of our Supporters’ Club stepped in. At the January Open Day, the brief was given regarding what was required and Andrew stepped up to the plate to project manage the entire affair. Andrew is a member of the Supporters’ Club, as are all our volunteers, and between them they have been working incredibly hard in their spare time to cosmetically refurbish and enhance the cockpit section, the IMG_3208cutaway engine and various other ancillaries that will form the display. New stands and supports have had to be created, and a method of physically carrying the cockpit section into position for the event, so that the antique floors at the venue are not damaged, has been devised. Their work is not finished, but their progress so far is excellent, as you can see from the photos. A gallery charting the progress will be created once it is completely finished. A huge amount of work goes into something like this, including liaising with the team of volunteers and scheduling work parties, planning and organising parts and tools, planning the logistics of transporting and collecting it and a team of six to central London, liaising with the graphic design team, plus a huge amount more. The trustees are incredibly thankful to Andrew, and the team for their work in this endeavour.



Opportunities to volunteer with the project are one of the key benefits for members of the Supporters’ Club and it is the perfect way to get involved and help with the rebuild, indeed it is membership subscriptions that have allowed the project to develop so much. Our youngest volunteer is just ten years old, and our oldest…. well, we won’t say! We have more and more IMG_3212volunteer positions becoming available all the time, as the project continues to expand and grow. We have Supporters’ Club members helping with managing the Supporters’ Club itself, and the online shop – a critical part of the fundraising, in refurbishment or engineering tasks such as this cockpit, and the huge task of cataloguing the entire collection is about to begin. The air show season is being planned by a volunteer, and volunteers are still required for nearly every air show we plan to attend this season, not to mention our regular Open Days, everything requires volunteers or boots on the ground. The key is that all volunteers are recruited from within the Supporters’ Club, so if you would like the chance to be involved in this once in a lifetime project, then if you haven’t already, please join the club and get in touch.


If you would like to join the Supporters’ Club to have the opportunity to be involved in excellent things such as this, then please visit the “Supporters’ Club” section of our website, come along to any of our Open Days, or click here.




Team leader for this project Andrew stands second on the left along with some of the volunteers responsible for the excellent work seen so far.



Support us

Would you like to have a direct input on the rebuild? The best way to get started is to become a supporter. You’ll receive some great benefits and most importantly of all, every penny will go into the labour cost of getting RB396 back into the sky.