Brooklands Museum Trust Ltd

The Aircraft Factory and Racetrack Revival project.

The historic Brooklands story began in 1907 when the World’s first purpose-built banked motor racing circuit was constructed, to be followed in 1909 with the formation of one of Britain’s first aerodromes. Brooklands developed a distinguished motoring heritage, with many famous drivers and machines performing here, before World War Two caused the end of motor racing. The aerodrome developed into Britain’s chief centre for flying training before World War One and became Britain’s largest aircraft manufacturing centre by 1918. By the early 1970s, famous names like Vickers Aircraft, British Aircraft Corporation and British Aerospace had manufactured aircraft at Brooklands, with some 18,600 complete aircraft here since 1908. The entire site then became a Conservation Area in 1989

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Location

Situation

BROOKLANDS MUSEUM TRUST, Weybridge, Surrey The Museum plans to restore the 194t Listed ‘Bellman’ aircraft hangar, where Wellington bombers were completed during World War Two and at the same time relocate it from its present position on part of the Race Track’s Finishing Straight. An exciting and comprehensive new exhibition inside the restored hangar will show visitors the important contribution that Brooklands has made to the aerospace industry over the past century – especially showing how aircraft were designed, developed and manufactured. Key exhibits will be two contemporary Brooklands-built military aeroplanes – a Hawker Hurricane fighter and a Vickers Wellington bomber recovered respectively from Siberia and Loch Ness, and both expertly restored by Museum volunteers. In restoring the Bellman hangar on a new site, the existing concrete floor will then expose - for the first time in nearly 70 years - the underlying part of the 1907 Race Track, which will then be returned to its original appearance, for use during commemorative motoring events . Being a very expensive project, the Museum intends to apply for a £1.8m Heritage Lottery Fund Grant in 2008, which, if successful, will still require the Trustees to find an additional £750,000 in matched funding in order to complete the project. Around £225,000 can be expected from help-in-kind and volunteer contributions, but around £500,000 must still be found from other sources. A donation of £100,000 would make a very significant contribution to that funding requirement, which will help to enhance two very important elements of British motoring and aviation heritage.

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