News

Stepping Back In Time To A WW1 Airfield

A new exhibit recreates a WW1 airfield to commemorate Lincolnshire’s aviation heritage.

An exhibition recreating a World War One airfield to commemorate Lincolnshire’s aviation heritage opens this week.

“Bastion in the Air” has been 4 years in the making and is now complete at RAF Scampton - which is part of Britain's 21st-century air defence.

It's being launched to further celebrate the centenary of the Royal Air Force.

Inside the exhibition is a recreation of a WW1 Royal Flying Corps airfield, which is based the historic Dambusters hangar.

A star attraction is the Sopwith Camel - a single-seat biplane fighter aircraft which was introduced on the Western Front in 1917.

Sopwith Camel

But there's also one other aircraft that's proving to be rather popular.

Wing Commander Joanne Campbell, who is the Station Commander RAF Scampton has taken a liking to the Airco DH.2 aircraft.

"My favourite is the DH.2 - that flew in from Wickenby Airfield and I was in the traffic control tower on the day of its arrival."

Joanne Campbell said that due to the wind it took them a while to get it in, adding it "put it into perspective how slow the aircraft is."

Airco DH.2 aircraft

She said: "To have the exhibition here in this hangar is a real honour - it just builds on the legacy of RAF Scampton and the wider contribution of the airforce across the county." 

All of the artefacts within the exhibit are originals from the Great War, which included a motorbike which was sent to France in 1915.

WW1 motorbike

David Harrigan, Aviation Heritage Manager said: "We've been very fortunate that this was offered up to us as part of this exhibition."

"This was incredibly important, as in the Second World War - you couldn't guarantee communications because telephone lines got cut regularly."

Mr Harrigan added that the couriers were used to get messages to Field Commanders, which were carried in panniers on the back.

"These were used routinely - every day."

ww1 accommodation

There's also an area that looks into the accommodation for the soldiers and reveals what the crews could have got up to between missions, which included objects such as a cricket bat and ball.