Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Duxford Imperial War Museum

A bright and early start for us on Monday, as we were going on a trip to the IWM at Duxford near Cambridge.  Not that far as the crow flies, but ages by road!

I had forgotten to tell Rob the date so he could get a day off work (he loves military history).  I was really sad about this, as he would have enjoyed it so much.  He very sweetly made an I-Spy book for us, so he was part of our day!

We arrived on time (yay), and went in with loads of other home edders.  We headed for the AirSpace hangar first, which has lots of British aircraft.

Fred was very enthusiastic, and was really interested in many of the planes. Betsy was not at all interested.  Something to remember for the future!  I think Rob and Fred would have a brilliant time if they went off to something like this together.

Betsy did like going on Concorde, and she liked the hands-on exhibits upstairs.

I liked the Vulcan the best - the wing span was amazing, and it reminded me of a paper aeroplane.

Fred liked the planes that had guns and windows on the back.

 He was also impressed with the missiles.

Upstairs activities.  Lots of exhibits about various aspects of flight, including drag, air pressure, propellers.

Betsy did this one over and over again until she hit the button 0.25 seconds after the light went on.  She wanted to prove that she had fast enough reactions!

Inside Concorde - the cockpit.

 Memphis Belle from the film.

After lunch and a play in the playground (in the *freezing cold* wind brrrr), we had a workshop about transport.  The bit in the education room was a bit talky, but we were lucky enough to go onto the Comet 4, the first passenger jet plane.

The kids were divided into groups - Fred was in the ground crew with some friends, Betsy and Meg were in the pilot group.  They were able to sit in the cockpit!

As there was no radar in 1958 (when the plane was built), they navigated by map and by the stars.  This in the photo below was in the roof of the cockpit, and was for stellar navigation.

After the workshop the kids went into the playground again, and I couldn't persuade them to walk up to the American Air Museum, which is apparently amazing.  Oh well!  If we had, we would have missed seeing a Chinook land in front of us, which was pretty fantastic.

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