Saturday, February 12, 2011

RAF Museum Conservation Blog

[RAF Museum Image.]

The Royal Air Force Museum have an excellent blog developing on their website, here. The introduction, back in 2010, by Tim Wallis – Manager of Conservation, said:
On behalf of our dedicated conservation team, I should like to welcome you to the new website for the ‘Michael Beetham Conservation Centre’ (MBCC).
Our duties encompass conservation, restoration, preventative maintenance, repairs, salvage, collections and delivery of aircraft or specialist loads etc. Current aircraft under work within the MBCC include: Vickers Wellington Mk10 (MF628); Sopwith Dolphin; Handley Page Hampden TB1 P1344; Spitfire Mk XIX; Range Safety Launch 1667. To carry out this crucial work, we have a current staffing level of 22, which includes Airframe & Propulsion Technicians, Aircraft Welder/Fabrication Technicians, Aircraft Carpenter Technicians, 7 Apprentices, a Training Manager and our Administration Manager. Designated as a ‘Centre of Excellence’ the MBCC has won a number of awards for conservation and we were delighted to become this year’s winner in the Small Employer category, for both the Regional and National Apprenticeships Awards.
The posts on the blog go some way to giving a glimpse into the tasks and objectives of such collection conservation departments, and the skills - and with several apprentices posting - training of the people involved. This work, and its objectives are often not well understood by those interested in vintage aviation, and it is good to see for that reason.

Some equivalent collections are offering similar insights to their departments, though many do fall into the trap of not explaining the 'why' behind the pretty pictures of rare machines.

It would be good for more museums to take advantage of this route to fulfil their mandate of public communication.



  1. Thanks for the pointer, added to RSS feed.

    The boss's name caused a double-take!

  2. Indeed a coincidence - not Sir Tim Wallis of New Zealand's warbird movement!