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Comet and Trident at Wroughton

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Comet and Trident at Wroughton

Old 5th Nov 2009, 17:34
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Comet and Trident at Wroughton

The Science Museum website is not great in the least. Do I really have to pay a small fortune and join a large tour in the summer to view these aircraft?
Has anyone been?

Thanks.

Seems an odd way to run a museum, these aircraft have virtually disappeared.
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Old 5th Nov 2009, 18:10
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Sadly so. Worth it though as there are quite a few aircraft and other goodies there. I guess they wouldn't get sufficient visitors through the door to make it pay if they opened it more regularly. The only reason I've been is because of the several PFA rallies held there around 1990.
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Old 5th Nov 2009, 18:13
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My wife and I have been. I can't recall the cost but it wasn't much. It's a brilliant museum and as there will probably only be a few other visitors with you, you get very personal service. The Trident and Comet are there plus the wonderful Connie.... and many other very interesting aircraft - Dak, Gugnunc, Dragon to name but a few.

Give it a whirl. Guess you realise that you have to book in advance..
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Old 5th Nov 2009, 20:33
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comet and trident

check before you book that the hanger that has the comet and trident in is open,i went this summer and the hanger these two are in was closed and according to a museum aid was likely to stay that way as it is falling apart elf and safety you know,need i say any more.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 05:44
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Sadly the Science Museum is spending all its time on panicking about the myth that is Global Warming/Climate Change/Carbon footprints!

Science Museum - Home - PROVE IT!

If one googles "science museum proveit numbers"

a whole series of vote rigging appears as the climate deniers/skeptics were
winning at about 6:1 and that is when the rigging began........however as of Fri 6th Nov 07:53 the count is..."1880 counted in so far, 6445 counted out so far"...

Sorry, thread jump........

Wroughton has quite an atmosphere to it. The Wiltshire countryside/sky around as one approaches and the state of the airfield makes you feel like a time warp has happened.
Well it did when I visited back in the late 90's. The Science Museum needs funds to repair the hangars.

Some of the waste of money wind farm grants would do nicely!

Last edited by aviate1138; 6th Nov 2009 at 06:59. Reason: latest data
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 09:32
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Wroughton is a large store of items they cannot display elsewhere hence it has only limited display information.
The site is an airfield and the hangers are well spread out.

Pre arranged tours only

Science Museum - About us - Science Museum at Wroughton

Two old 360 degree images to give you a taster.
www.bbc.co.uk/wiltshire/content/panoramas/nmsi_1_360.shtml


Photos and registrations
Science Museum - Wroughton

A great place to visit

Last edited by beamender99; 6th Nov 2009 at 09:39. Reason: added another link
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 13:30
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Seriously guys, more time reading scientific journals and less time reading Richard Littlejohn.

It's a shame that the hangar is in need of repairs, so maybe we should think about some kind of fund if one doesn't already exist?
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 13:31
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275 to visit what is an annex to the Science Museum, which has free admission is outrageous! I don't know how long they have been doing this, but as far as I knew you could visit there at any time when staff were on site without charge. Suggest you wait until they have an event on there, like a vintage car or bus rally, which charges a nominal 5 entrance fee and then all the museum hangars are open for free.

This guide was only updated in July and admission was free then:

Science Museum - Wroughton
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 13:37
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Different curators have different ideas.
Way back in 1992, GATCO (Guild of Air Traffic Contol Officers) arranged a private visit, and visitors were invited to fly in. We did this in a Cherokee from Fairoaks.
Ross Sharp, the curator at the time, told us he would like to open the airfield and collection to visitors at weekends and invited any of us with FISO licences to help out. Sadly Ross was replaced within 2 years and this policy went out of the window with him.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 13:42
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I know Ross Sharp well and he was the only museum curator who knew how to run Wroughton. At my request, he had an open day where he got all the aircraft that were moveable, pulled outside and lined up for photography. Today even if you asked them to push the Gnat outside for photography, they would want a small fortune to do that! Alas, draconian attitudes, coupled with beauracracy, red tape and the dreaded Health & Safety, have completely destroyed the previous museums' policy of encouraging the public to visit and interact with museums. Whatever happened to public relations, publicity and goodwill. Museums are for educating and the public should be encouraged to visit, not put off by large fees for Group visits only.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 14:56
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Ross always seemed to have great ideas for the development of Wroughton as a more accessible museum. Many of the hangars were air-conditioned in order to ensure a moisture free atmosphere to preserve the exhibits. We didn't visit more than half the hangars, but were told they had an extensive collection of cars in one of them (not saying which one though) and Ross had recently acquired some rail exhibits as well as some old radar equipment.
Did he just leave or was he pushed? Couldn't believe it when he walked into Farnborough Tower a couple of years later apparently working for SBAC.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 15:14
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There were several open days at Wroughton in the 80s. I recall going to one which had a replica of Stevenson's Rocket running up and down on a track and there were all sorts of other exhibits, such as cider apple pressing.

I have photos of the Comet and the Gugnunc somewhere, I'll see if I can dig them out.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 15:15
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Museums are for educating and the public should be encouraged to visit, not put off by large fees for Group visits only.
Surely a nominal entry fee and some willing volunteers would start to allow some money to trickle in. These aircraft and exhibits might as well have been scrapped for all the use they are to the world in this situation.
A bloody scandal. I am awaitng a reply from my email. BTW the website is utterly useless.

Very amateurish business model, quite sad.
Thanks for all the replies guys, much appreciated.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 18:35
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275 entry fee? What, for one person? That's a) outrageous and b) crazy! Really sorry to hear that things have changed so much as we had a really good time.

It was 2005 when my wife and I visited. The hangars looked in good condition; in fact the whole place looked clean and smart. I took these piccies there:
Science Museum Wroughton :: Fotopic.Net
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 18:48
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HD.........

Good news, you can take up to 50 people for that price !!!

Bad news, it is "plus VAT", that will be 323.12 from Jan next year.

The last time I was there, was for the last PFA rally, 1991 ??? Hangars appeared to be in a fairly good state of repair.

One suspects that raising H&S issues and having exorbitant charges may have something to do with the the fact the Science Museum wants to discourage visitors. The collection was much more accessible in the 80's.

Pity, because there are some treasures in there. Where can you see a deH 84 and deH 89 together?

Planemike
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 20:57
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Why would a museum with such a fantastic collection of this country,s engineering achievements want to hide them away for most of the year is beyond me.
Anyone from the Science museum reading? i would love to read your views please .
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 21:24
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Angry Wroughton

Wroughton is, sadly, only a store for the huge collection of items that the Science Museum has accumulated over the years. It simply has no facilities (or staff) to handle large numbers of visitors on a regular basis. I've been fortunate enough to visit several times over the years and the slow deterioration over those years is very evident. What little money they manage to squeeze out of this useless government has to be balanced between patching up the buildings and preserving priceless artifacts for future generations. And they do have some truly fascinating stuff.
They were competing (in the last six) for an award of lottery funding (50 Million) to turn the place into a world-beating facility, to inspire our kids and hopefully encourage them to follow in the footsteps of all the great scientists that made this nation what it once was. But the ITV sponsors, together with the Lottery admin morons decided that they were certain winners and so pulled them out of the competition at a late stage. Some cycle path or woodland glade in the Midlands got the money instead. And, sadly, the 'elf n safety idiots have squashed any hope of allowing visitors to some areas unless big money is spent. And we wonder why this nation is becoming a backwater of the United States of Europe !!
But whatever the cost, DO GO VISIT if you can find a way. It really is well worth it. Before Gordon sells it off.
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Old 6th Nov 2009, 23:59
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I hadn't realised things had changed that much. Last I heard they were having 3 or 4 open days a year, which I suppose shows how much notice I've been taking.

I went to an airshow there in the very late 80s and it was great, a real 50s atmosphere and most of the hangars open. It's a shame to think that doesn't happen now.
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Old 7th Nov 2009, 01:56
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I went to their Open Day in September, the last this year, and was told that the Comet (and presumably the Groundgripper too) was in an adjacent hangar , which was in such a poor state of repair that it was closed to the public. Just as post 4 above says.
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Old 9th Nov 2009, 08:18
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But the ITV sponsors, together with the Lottery admin morons decided that they were certain winners and so pulled them out of the competition at a late stage. Some cycle path or woodland glade in the Midlands got the money instead.
The winners of the 50m tv vote competition were Sustrans with 79 walking/cycling projects nationwide, Connect2.

Difficult to see how the Wroughton site would have been more popular in a public vote than 79 schemes which in many cases are town changing improvements directly relevant to everyone in each of the 79 neighbourhoods.

It just sounds like the Wroughton site should be more volunteer friendly to facilitate many more set dates in the calender at limited expense. More public involvement in the site would almost definitely increase goodwill in the form of donations for the upkeep of the site and exhibits.

DeepC
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