Flying Legends Airshow~Part 8

14 Oct

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

Flying Legends


Day 8 – Wednesday July 8th


When I checked in at the “Ye Ole Red Lion Hotel” the evening before, the hotel proprietor was very efficient and explained everything to me, including Wi-Fi password, dinner and breakfast menus & hours. I asked him if breakfast was to be served in the same dining area where I took my dinner (Fish & Chips) and he said, “Yes.”  I woke ready to dig into my English breakfast (served from 8-10) that was included with the price of my room. But when I arrived at the breakfast room, at 8:30, the door was locked. I knocked on the door but nobody came. I knocked on a window and still no one came. After waiting for about 15 minutes I finally decided I wasn’t going to get any breakfast. I thought, “You know that’s a good way for the hotel to save money on the free breakfast they advertise. Just don’t open up and then you don’t have to serve breakfast. The people have their destinations to get to and will usually give up and drive away, like I did.”



My first stop today was at the South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum in Doncaster. They had a very nicely restored Vulcan bomber sitting outside as you entered the museum property, but the rest of their outside display airplanes were in very poor condition. The inside of the only Hanger they had looked like a junkyard. It was so full of parts of airplanes, helicopters and engines that a person could hardly walk thru the mess. Their excuse for the condition was that they just didn’t have room to properly display everything they had. They did have a row of several British Cambara nose sections displayed outside that I thought Larry would be interested in.



Next it was on to the Lincolnshire Aviation Center in Hagnaby. This was a beautifully restored our WWII RAF bomber base. Several of the original buildings and the control tower have been restored and used to exhibit their WWII memorabilia. The museums claim to fame is a fully restored Lancaster bomber. Every few days (today wasn’t one of those days) they start the engines and you can buy a ride in the bomber as they taxi it down the runway and back. WOW, what a thrill that must be!



Next was the Battle of Britain Memorial Center and Coningsby. This museum reminded me of Kermit Weeks’ Fantasy of Flight in Florida. Every beautifully restored airplane they have in their collection is in flying condition, and is flown frequently. The only difference is that Kermit flies his own restored museum airplanes and this museum’s restored airplanes are flown by active duty No. 29 Squadron RAF pilots in their spare time, on special occasions, at airshows all over England. Missing from the photo below is their C-47.


Next on the list was the Cranwell Aviation Heritage Center in Sleaford. This museum only had one plane and the museum was mostly dedicated to the history of the Cranwell Air Field Training Center there during World War II.



The Newark Air Museum in Newark-on-Trent was closed today, but I did get a few photos of their outside static display airplanes, thru the fence.



Next was the Finland & West Norfolk Aviation Museum in Wisbeck. I didn’t get to this museum before they closed, but I would never have guessed it was a museum, except for the sign over the door and the one airplane out front. From the outside, it looked like a work shop in a small warehousing area.



I found the Riverside Chalets in the small town of Spalding.   The small apartment type rooms were located behind the Riverside Pub.  They were very nice, quiet and clean. I had a great meal of beef, new potatoes and mashpeas and a pint of Guinness at the tiny pub that evening.



—–To Be Continued—–

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