Midland Air Museum, Coventry Airport, Baginton, Warwickshire

On our way home from the Southern England tour, we broke the journey at Baginton. My previous visit to the museum was in 1999 (see my Misc pages for a few photos), and my last visit to Coventry Airport was in 2003 for the fabulous Coventry Classic Airshow.

Started in 1967 as the Midland Aircraft Preservation Society (MAPS), they changed to their current name in 1977 and moved to their current site in 1987, and have kept on growing in size and stature through their existance, even expanding their facilities during the Covid-19 lockdowns.

The museum has enough land, for now, to display the outdoor aircraft quite spaciously, while the light, bright hangar is, as ever, pretty crowded, but with a very handy mezzanine floor packed with exhibits and giving sone good high views. A nice shop and cafe with outdoor seating areas, and an excellent guidebook, made for a lovely visit - mine was on 16 September.

Aircraft Reg'n Thumbs Notes
Armstrong Whitworth (Gloster) Meteor NF14 WS838 RAF. First flew April 1954, retired after a stint as a yellow chase plane at RAE Bedford, in 1971
Armstrong Whitworth Argosy 650 G-APRL Elan Parcel Services. Second prototype, first flown March 1959. To Riddle Airlines 1961 as N6507R, Capitol Airlines, Zantop Air Transport as N602Z, Universal Airlines as N890U. Returned to Saggitair 1974, then Air Bridge Carriers. Came to the museum in 1987.
Avro Blue Steel   Stand-off nuclear bomb. In service with the RAF 1963-70.
Avro Vulcan B2 XL360 RAF. Built in 1962 and made its last flight, to the museum, in 1983.
BAE Sea Harrier FA2 ZE694 004 Royal Navy - served 1988-2003.
Beardmore Inflexible main wheel J7557 From the huge all-metal tri-motor (bigger than a B-29), AKA Rohrbach Ro VI, flown 1928-30.
Bombs   Left: WE-177 nuclear bomb drill round, right: free-fall 1,000 lb bomb
Boulton Paul P111A VT935 One-off delta wing research aircraft flown 1950-58.
Chichester-Miles Consultants (CMC) Leopard Four G-BRNM Second of the two produced, this pressurised four-seat jet was frustrated by engine availability problems. The first flew in 1988 and this revised version in 1997. The project was abandoned when Ian Chichester-Miles died in 2009.
Dassault Mystere IVA VA 70 8-NV French AF.
De Havilland Canada DHC-2 U-6A Beaver 58-2062 US Army. Delivered October 1959. Patrolled the Berlin wall during the Cold War.
De Havilland DH-100 Vampire F1 VF301 RAF. World's oldest Vampire, strangely marked VF/301 RAL-G, for which I can find no explanation.
De Havilland DH-104 Dove 2 G-ALCU Marked as 'G-ALVD' of Dunlop, which was exported to Pakistan in 1957. 'CU has had multiple owners in the UK.
De Havilland DH-110 Sea Vixen FAW2 XN685 703 Royal Navy. Second FAW2 prototype converted from an FAW1.
De Havilland DH-125 (HS-125) G-ARYB Second prototype and oldest existing 125. First flight December 1962, retired 1965.
Druine D31 Turbulent BAPC126  
English Electric Canberra PR3 WF922 Only 2 PR3s survive - this entered service in 1952 and was used by the A&AEE and the Radar Research Establishment (RRE) for recce systems trials. Came to the museum in 1985.
English Electric Canberra T17A nose WH646 Electronic warfare trainer. Originally a B2, in 1958 it was loaned to the New Zealand AF and saw action in Malaya. Converted on its return to the RAF to a T17 then a T17A. The rest of the airframe was scrapped in 1990.
English Electric Lightning F6 XR771 AN RAF. First flew in January 1966 and was flown to the museum in March 1988.
English Electric Lightning T55 55-713 C Saudi AF. First flight November 1967. Returned to the UK in January 1986 as ZF598 and moved to the museum in 1989.
English Electric Thunderbird   The British Army's equivalent of the RAF's Bristol Bloodhound surface -to-air missile. Served the UK from 1959-77
Fairey Gannet T2 XA508 GN-627 Royal Navy - first production T2 and sole survivor of the mark. First flew February 1955 and retired by April 1957.
Fairey Ultra Light Helicopter G-APJJ In the restoration hangar. The last of six built, this is the only complete original machine remaining. The only other survivor, at The Helicopter Museum, has some significant parts taken from other examples or specially made.
Folland Gnat F1 XK741 Marked as 'Finnish AF GN-101 Kreivi von Rosen'. New wings are being built. XK741 was the 4th airframe, first flown in May 1957, mainly being used for static trials, retired by 1974.
Gloster Javelin FAW5 XA699 X RAF Built here at Baginton in 1957, this is the sole surviving FAW5, moved to the museum in 1983.
Gloster Meteor F4 EE531 RAF. The oldest surviving production Meteor in the UK, built here in 1946, used for development work and retired in 1953.
Gloster Meteor F8 nose VZ477 RAF - this was one of several used for flight refuelling trials. Built in 1950, retired in 1962.
Handley Page Victor B1A nose XH592 RAF - delivered February 1959 retired October 1974.
Hawker (Armstrong Whitworth) Sea Hawk FGA6 WV797 491 Royal Navy. Took part in Suez operations and has the yellow/black stripes used for the campaign.
Hawker Hunter F6A XF382 15 RAF. Served 1956-86. The starboard side of the nose has a little camera window, said to be for anti-drug smuggling operations for the Welsh police.
Humber Monoplane replica BAPC9 Licenced copy of the Bleriot XI, built by the Humber motor company in Coventry. Replica was built, with a period engine, for the 1959 Royal Tournament and displayed in Birmingham Airport terminal.
Kaman HH-43B Huskie 62-4535 24535 USAF. In the restoration hangar. Was the base rescue helicopter at Upper Heyford.
Lockheed F-104G Starfighter R-756 Danish AF - served from around 1964 to 1984. Ex USAF 64-17756, built by Canadair.
Lockheed L188(F) Electra nose N5535 Evergreen International Airlines livery. A long history in the USA, later EI-CHO and Channel Express G-CHNX.
Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star 17473 French AF, ex USAF 51-17473, currently marked as 'Italian AF 117529 TR-529'.
Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star 51-4419 0-14419 USAF markings, ex French AF 14419.
McDonnell Douglas F-4C Phantom II 63-7414 USAF - awaiting some attention.
McDonnell Douglas F-4C Phantom II 63-7699 CG USAF
McDonnell TF-101B (F-101F) Voodoo 56-0312 USAF. Converted from F-101B. Marked as 'Canadian AF CF-101 447'
MiG-21 SPS 'Fishbed D' 959 East German AF
Mignet HM14 Flying Flea G-AEGV Registered 1936, cancelled 1937.
Mil Mi-24D Hind   C/n 353246405029. Ex Soviet AF 06 Red. Displayed in the markings used by BAe for the 2004 Farnborough show, fitted with modern NATO avionics.
North American F-86A Sabre 48-0242 FU-242 USAF. Ex N196B of Planes of Fame museum, Chino, who fitted wings from an F-86F.
North American F-100D Super Sabre 54-2174 SM USAF - in Vietnam war markings but ex French AF, keeping its US serial.
Panavia Tornado GR4 ZA452 021 RAF. Built as a GR1, served 1983-2013 - Gulf War veteran.
Percival Prentice T1 VS623 RAF. Was G-AOKZ from 1956 to 1961.
PZL TS-11bis A Iskra 408 Polish AF, previously marked as '1706'. Iskra = spark.
Saab J-29F Tunnan 29640 J 10 Swedish AF. Tunnan = barrel. Built in 1954 and arrived here in 1985.
Slingsby T38 Grasshopper TX1 XK789 RAF. Delivered 1952, became BGA5074.
Vickers Viscount 708 F-BGNR Air Inter. Delivered in June 1954 to Air France, sold to Air Inter in 1962 and retired to Perth, Scotland, in 1973. Apparently the interior has been restored, and a fresh Air France livery is planned.
Westland Scout AH1 XR635 British Army. Delivered February 1965.
Westland WS-55 Whirlwind 3 G-APWN Bristow Helicopters. First flown as a Mk1 in 1969 and registered to Bristow in 1963, went to Nigeria as 5N-AGI and Bermuda as VR-BER, retired in 1981 and came to the museum in 1984.

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