Features – Exhibition
The RAuxAF Exhibition has its origins in a visit in 2008 by the Foundation’s Secretary, Squadron Leader Tony Freeman, to the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Visitor’s Centre at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire. The Centre is managed by Lincolnshire Museums who kindly agreed for the Foundation to exhibit for a short time up to 16 panels charting the history of the RAuxAF from its formation in 1924 up to the present day. The panels were designed by the Foundation Secretary who also provided the text.
The Exhibition was opened in August 2009 and, although scheduled for a 6-month tenure, actually remained in situ for 2 years before replaced with a permanent but smaller RAuxAF history mounted in a display case. The original Exhibition panels were then dismantled and shipped to RAF Leeming in Yorkshire. However, for operational reasons, the general public could only view them by prior appointment.
In September 2016, the Secretary visited the Battle of Britain Museum at Bentley Priory following which he was invited to give a presentation on the role of the Auxiliary Air Force in the Battle. He took advantage of the occasion to get the agreement of the Museum to display an updated version of the original 16 panels. Once installed, the panels remained at Bentley Priory until 2016 when they too were dismantled and re-installed at the Dumfries and Galloway Aviation Museum at Heathall Dumfries where they can be viewed on most weekends.
All costs associated with producing the panels were met from Foundation funds but the cost of producing the panels themselves was met from Public Funds, through Command Graphics at HQ Air Command at High Wycombe for which the Foundation is most grateful.
The Dumfries And Galloway Aviation Museum is based on the old RAF Dumfries airfield control tower site at Heathhall to the North East of Dumfries. It houses a rebuilt Spitfire dredged up from Loch Doon and is home to an Airborne Forces Museum as well as over a dozen aircraft and other displays. The control tower itself houses many engines, a replica air traffic control and many other artefacts. It recently purchased the site outright, with the aid of funding and has also recently erected four large nissen type huts, one of which will be used to house RAuxAF memorabilia.. The Museum is open every Saturday and Sunday throughout the year and on Wednesdays and Fridays during the summer months April to October; it is signposted from the A75 Dumfries bypass.