British Motor Museums
British Motor Museums
Aerospace Bristol is opening on 17 October. It follows a £4.7million National Lottery grant to restore two First World War hangers at Filton Airfield and create a museum dedicated to Bristol’s aerospace heritage.
This is the culmination of a three-year project led by Bristol Aero Collection Trust to tell the story of the industry and its impact on the area including the social history of the people who worked there.
Transport wise, the museum will have a Bristol 403 chassis and a Bristol lorry on display when Aerospace Bristol opens in October 2017. Maybe a Bristol Bus will appear at a later date.
At the end of the Second World War, the Bristol Aeroplane Company took over Fraser Nash, and set up a car department in the factory. The first production car, the Bristol 400, was based on pre-war BMW designs, but with much higher performance, thanks to the the manufacturing techniques of the aviation industry. From this followed the streamline 401 and the convertible 402. The company become world famous for the quality of their luxury cars.
Bristol also developed a series of racing cars, the most famous being the Bristol 450, which took first, second and third in the both 1954 and 1955 Le Mans 24-hour races. Tragically 94 spectators were killed when a Mercedes-Benz crashed during the 1955 race, and the Bristol team donated their prize money to the disaster fund. Later that year the racing department was closed down. Following the consolidation of the aircraft companies in 1959/60, the Bristol Car Division became an independent company in 1960. Shortly after, with the introduction of the 407, Chrysler V8 engines were used instead of Bristol engines.
Starting in the earliest days of powered flight, Aerospace Bristol will whisk you away on an immersive journey through more than a century of incredible aviation achievements and fascinating tales of human endeavour.
From bold pioneers taking to the skies in their magnificent flying machines, to the remarkable men and women who played their part in two world wars, to those who dreamed a seemingly-impossible dream of supersonic travel: then created the iconic Concorde to turn that dream into reality.
Your journey takes you from the beginnings of the British and Colonial Aeroplane Company in 1910 all the way through to the modern day, where you will explore cutting-edge technology, and look ahead to an exciting future, discovering how the next generation of engineers will continue to push aerospace technology to new heights and reach for the stars.
A visit to Aerospace Bristol is a chance to travel through the decades, enjoy fun interactives and amazing exhibits - including aeroplanes, helicopters, missiles, satellites, engines and more - and immerse yourself in a story of ordinary people achieving extraordinary things.
Planes on display include Concorde 216, Bristol Scout, Bristol Fighter and a Blenheim IV (WWII Bristol Bolingbroke bomber, under restoration), as well as many scale models.
Flight becomes more recognisable to our contemporary eyes. With the end of World War One, demand for aircraft drops, and the business diversifies. A replica Bristol ‘Babe’ and lorry open the Era and represent the BAC’s changing output at the time.
The museum is located on the historic Filton Airfield, where every British Concorde made her maiden flight.