It is our intention that the exhibits and information within the Museum, as well as hopefully providing our visitors with a pleasurable day out, should also provide an educational tour for schools and students, to give them a clearer understanding of what life was like in Britain at that time in history, when we fought alone against seemingly overwhelming odds. What life was like not only for the young pilots and all other personnel to be involved on an operational airfield, but also the civilian population in the area; firemen, policemen, air raid wardens, members of the Observer Corps, Land Army Girls, Women's Voluntary Service and the Home Guard, children and their parents. All these and others were involved in, and affected by, the Battle of Britain, a battle whose outcome was as vital to the people of this country as the Armada, Trafalgar or Waterloo. It is our hope that some of what they see and read about will be remembered by a younger generation and, if it is only one of the stories or one of the pilots, then our efforts in creating this collection will have been well rewarded.
Each exhibit is carefully researched, mostly from primary source material. The correct way of describing us is not an aircraft museum but a museum of the men (and women) of the Battle of Britain. Where possible we tell the back story of each exhibit and the person involved, explaining where the pilot or airmen was born, educated and where they worked prior to their wartime service. If they died, where they are buried. If they survived, what happened to them post war. Each display is a personal tribute to those involved.
The way we design the displays absorbs the visitor into the story of the Battle and often you will find a connection to your own life. It maybe that you were born in the same hospital, attend the same school, the aircraft crashed close to your home town or village, or maybe an airman is buried in your local cemetery.
There are over 700 aircraft losses represented in the museum from the Battle and on the anniversary of each and every aircraft shot down, with often the loss of its pilot and aircrew, the display is marked with a simple 'shot down on this day in 1940'and two poppies. Some days only one or two were lost. On others, there are up to fifty represented. This brings it home to the visitor the intensity of the fighting on particular days of the Battle of Britain.