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About the Society

The Robertsbridge Aviation Society is a non-profit making organisation, run entirely by volunteers with the sole aim of catering for the interests of the aviation enthusiast, preserving local aviation history and aviation history in general.

The Society’s founder members were members of the Royal Observer Corps (ROC) which played a vital role during the Battle of Britain monitoring aircraft movements across the South of England. These founder members wanted to join with non ROC members in order to enhance their aircraft recognition skills. The Society was originally called the Robertsbridge Aircraft Recognition Society and would hold meetings in member’s homes.

As Society member numbers increased meetings were held at Robertsbridge Scout hut, and eventually in 1973 the Society found a more permanent home at Bush Barn. It was at this time that the Society changed its name to the Robertsbridge Aviation Society to reflect the wider scope of activities and interests that the members embraced.

In the early 1970’s members became interested in the then new hobby of aviation archaeology and recovered a Spitfire which crashed near Bodiam, shortly followed by a Hurricane which crashed near Newenden. The artefacts were cleaned and formed the nucleus of a museum. As interest in preserving aviation archaeology grew, so did the interest in collecting aircraft parts and related material. Today the museum is housed in six nissen huts at Bush Barn.

The Museum

The collection was founded in 1973 and includes many exhibits covering civil and military aviation, both past and present with the Second World War featuring prominently.

Exhibits include artefacts recovered from local World War 2 crash sites and coastal areas, 40 aero engines including the Rolls Royce Merlin, Napier Sabre, Bristol Hercules and Proteus, Rolls Royce Avon and Conway, display cases featuring the First World War, Battle of Britain, flying clothing and equipment, the Home Front, civil aviation, the Royal Observer Cops, the United States Eighth Air Force and special displays dedicated to former society presidents Peter Latham and Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown.

Many other exhibits including propellers, gun turrets, instruments and models are also displayed.

The museum also displays cockpit sections from a Meteor T7, Sea Vixen FAW 1, English Electric Lightning and Canberra and Hunting Percival Jet Provost

Principal Activities

Society membership is open to anyone with an interest in aviation, civil or military, past or present. We can cater for a wide range of activities from conservation and preservation work, visits to other organisations, photography, air band radio, historical research, model making and aircraft recognition.

General meetings are held on alternate Monday evenings throughout the year from 8:00pm until 10:00pm. Meetings generally consist of a fun aircraft recognition test followed by a film or slides and conversation about our hobby. The occasional speaker is also arranged.

We are non-profit making organisation, which means we rely on membership fees, public donations and fund raising activities for finance. Throughout the year we hold a series of fund raising events such as coffee mornings, a book sale, jumble sales and raffles.

An annual Open Day is held the last Sunday in July for the public to sample Society activities. The museum collection is open and there are exhibitions of art, model aircraft, photography and a working air band radio station.

HOW TO FIND US

Bush Barn is located by the A21, just north of the historic village of Robertsbridge. The entrance is between two sharp corners on a steep section of Silver Hill. The museum is signposted during open days and events.

Robertsbridge Aviation Society
Bush Barn
Silver Hill
Robertsbridge
East Sussex
TN32 5PA

 

Photo credit: Tony Calvert (tonycalvertphoto.com)

News

MUSEUM NEWS JUNE 2021

CORONA VIRUS COVID 19 UPDATE Due to the ongoing pandemic we have taken the decision not to open the museum this year. We have considered all options regarding social distancing for our visitors but due to the nature of the Nissen huts and the restricted space within we would not be able to safely meet …

MUSEUM NEWS AUGUST

CORONA VIRUS COVID 19 UPDATE Due to the ongoing pandemic we have taken the decision not to open the museum this year. We have considered all options regarding social distancing for our visitors but due to the nature of the Nissen huts and the restricted space within we would not be able to safely meet …

MUSEUM NEWS APRIL

CORONA VIRUS COVID 19 In accordance with current Government guidelines the museum is temporarily closed and will reopen when it is safe to do so. All fund raising activities have been cancelled until further notice. We hope that all our members and supporters are safe and well and we look forward to seeing you again …

Diary Dates

DIARY DATES 2021

THE MUSEUM WE CLOSED FOR 2021

WE WILL NOT BE HOLDING ANY FUND RAISING ACTIVITIES DURING 2021

WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING OUR VISITORS AND SUPPORTERS IN 2022

11th AND 12TH SEPTEMBER 2021 – WE WILL BE DISPLAYING ARTEFACTS FROM THE MUSEUM AT THE KENT AND EAST SUSSEX 1940’s WEEKEND

Photo Gallery

lightning f3 xp701
ENGLISH ELECTRIC LIGHTNING F3 XP701


The museum with Lightning F3 XP701 and Bristol Proteous engine


Meteor T7 WA630


Wreckage from Lancaster BIII LM650

Contact

Roberstbridge Aviation Society Chairman

Roy Chrismas

Tel: 01580 880 712

Roberstbridge Aviation Society General Secretary and Museum Manager

Trevor Woodgate

Tel: 01304 239 711

Membership

Family * £17.50

Adult £15.00

Friend ** £8.00

Junior (under 18) £8.50

* Family membership comprises a maximum of two adults and two children under 18
** Friend membership is intended only for those who cannot attend meetings or Society activities but who would like to support the Society and keep in touch