News from 2016

  • Jaguar XX741 Update – December 28th 2016

See a video summary of the 2016 restoration progress on the museum’s Jaguar XX741 thanks to Al Vernon. 2016 has been an exciting year for this project, and we think you will see why in the video!


  • Museum Update September 5th 2016

We are sad to say that following the theft of two patches from flight suits in the museum we have been forced to remove all patches, medal ribbons and name badges (unless sewn on) from all uniforms and flight suits within the museum. The two patches stolen were the ‘Got Nukes’ patch illustrated below and an Aerospace Rescue & Recovery Service ‘Angel’ patch. Although these two patches were attached with velcro, we had taken additional measures of tack stitching them on as well. The thief had cut the tack stitches before removing the patches from the flight suits. We apologise for having to take this action but unfortunately this has been forced upon us.

patch


  • Bentwaters Airfield Walk – Sunday October 9th 2016 – NOW FULLY BOOKED (30th August 2016)

Experience a chance to walk around Bentwaters and sample the atmosphere of a Cold War airfield and view the architecture of a former United States Air Force front line air base.

The tour will start with an hour long visit to the museum to find out the history of the site and then a guided walk around the airfield going past and through different areas of interest including the museums restoration hanger and finishing back at the museum for free Tea, Coffee and Biscuits.

Cost will be £15.00 per person.  All proceeds go to the Bentwaters Cold War Museum, charity No 1124197

Numbers will be limited to 25 people (sorry but no children under 12), dogs are allowed if kept on a lead.

  • The walk is about 4 miles long and is mostly on a hard surface.
  • The walk will be cancelled if weather conditions are extreme.
  • Instructions from the guides must be followed at all times due to Health & Safety factors. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of the walk.
  • Allow 4 to 5 hours for the visit, starting at 11am.

Thanks to Bentwaters Parks for their kind permission for airfield access. Email october2016walk@bentwaters-as.org.uk to book your place or to ask any questions


  • Bentwaters Airfield tour – Sunday 11th September 2016

This is a unique opportunity to see what went on behind the scenes at Bentwaters during the Cold War. The day will include a trip by coach around the airfield and museum and stopping at key points around the airfield. This will include areas such as the control tower, Hush House, weapons store, fuel section, some of the squadron buildings and our own restoration hangar. The trip lasts around 4 hours and also includes the museum.

This has to be booked in advance and can be done by emailing info@bcwm.org.uk or via our website contact page or by phoning the museum on 07588877020 .

Prices are £15 per person payable in advance (cheques should be made payable to Bentwaters Aviation Society). BAS members can attend for free, but still have to be booked in. You can also pay using PayPal by visiting the BAS website here.

The museum will be open from 10am for pre -booked only and the airfield tour will start at 11am. The café will be open for light snacks between 10am and 11am and will be open again after the tour. However you are more than welcome to bring your own lunch while on the tour. Spaces are limited so please book early.


  • Rendlesham Show 2016

The BCWM display stand had its first outing this year to the Rendlesham Village Show on Saturday 11th June. Along side us were the Lazy Co. Cold War U.S living history and airsoft group.


  • Bank Holiday Weekend Opening!

Just a reminder that we are open today (May 29th) and  on the Bank Holiday Monday(May 30th). The A-10 will be on view outside the museum and members of the restoration team will be hard at work beginning the long task of returning her to her former glory. We look forward to seeing you over the next two days if you can come along.

A10


  • Arrival of the A-10 at Bentwaters

The return of the A-10 airframe from RAF Alconbury in Cambridgeshire to RAF Bentwaters in Suffolk was completed today. Below are some images taken by Simon Parker taken during the transit. The A-10 will not be re-assembled immediately but will be on display at the museum in its current state, when we are next open on bank holiday Sunday/Monday.


  • Book your place for the Airfield Walk online at the BAS website.

If the prospect of the Airfield Walk on May 22nd excites you, then you can pay and reserve a place even more quickly now by filling out a brief form and paying online with PayPal by visiting the Bentwaters Aviation Society website using the link here.


  • Airfield Walk – Sunday 22nd May, 2016

Another chance to walk around Bentwaters and sample the atmosphere of a Cold War airfield and view the architecture of a former United States Air Force front line air base is almost upon us.

The tour will start with an hour long visit to the museum to find out the history of the site and then a guided walk around the airfield going past and through different areas of interest including the museums restoration hanger and finishing back at the museum.

Cost will be £15.00 per person (cheques made payable to ‘Bentwaters Aviation Society’ and sent to Airfield Walk, BCWM ,Building 134,Bentwaters Parks, Rendlesham, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 2TW). It is advisable to pre-book to make sure of a place on the walk. All proceeds go to the Bentwaters Cold War Museum, charity No 1124197

Numbers will be limited to 25 people (sorry but no children under 12), dogs are allowed if kept on a lead.

– The walk is about 4 miles long and is mostly on a hard surface

– The walk will be cancelled if weather conditions are extreme

– Instructions from the guides must be followed at all times due to Health & Safety factors. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of the walk

– Allow 4 to 5 hours for the visit, starting at 11am.

Thanks to Bentwaters Parks for their kind permission for airfield access. Email info@bcwm.org.uk to book your place or to ask any questions.

Airfield Walk


  • Classic Car Show on the 17th April 2016

A Classic car show was held at the museum on Sunday April 17th, and was a great success with many cars showing up for the event ranging from some American Mustangs to European Trabants as well as numerous other British classics including Austins and Bentleys. Some shots of the event were captured by Graham Gilbert of the museum.


  • Bentwaters Cold War Museum at Night Event – 23rd April 2016

Opening times: 7.00pm to 10.00pm

Following on from the successful first event last year, Bentwaters Cold War Museum will be opening its doors in the evening to hold a special opening in the evening with floodlit aircraft and live re-enactment by museum staff in the Cold War Command Post Bunker who will bring to life the ominous prospect of impending war that the world faced when the superpowers of the USA and the Soviet Union opposed each other.

Guided tours of the museum will be available at intervals plus films and photo opportunities both in the Command Post and outside with the aircraft, all arranged to maximise the visitor experience.

Admission is the normal price of £5.00 with children free. Hot drinks will be available in the museum café.


  • A-10 Update – March 19th 2016

Work is continuing on the dismantling and movement of the A-10 from RAF Alconbury, and work is ongoing to prepare the aircraft for transport. It is expected to arrive at the museum during April 2016

A-10


  • Getting ready for the 2016 open season

Here are a few photos taken on March 6th of the restoration hangar at the BCWM showing progress on the aircraft.  Work throughout the Winter has been taking place within the hangar as well as inside the museum.


  • Special Event – Sunday 17th April  – Classic Car Show

The museum will be hosting a collection of classic vehicles from various car clubs throughout the day. This will include a selection from old, sports and American muscle cars

The classic cars will be free for the public to view outside the compound. The museum will be open with normal admission prices. There will be refreshments available to purchase from our café and a burger stall within the museum grounds.


  • MAJOR NEWS FOR THE BCWM!!

The Bentwaters Cold War Museum wishes to announce that it has been successful in its bid to acquire an A-10 Thunderbolt on loan from the National Museum of the USAF. The airframe in question is an ex-509th TFS/81st TFW Bentwaters-based jet and is currently residing at RAF Alconbury. It is hoped that the A-10 will be on display for the first opening of 2016 which will be Easter Sunday.

To say that we are pleased to be returning a Warthog to Bentwaters is an understatement. Our thanks must go to all the USAF and NMUSAF personnel involved in achieving what started off as a pipe dream back in 2003,  four years before we first opened our doors to the public. Hopefully this will be a very successful 2016 for BCWM!


  • Restoration continues over the Winter months…

Simon Parker and Jason Himpson were busy working on the restoration of our ex RAF Lakenheath tool trolley on February 7th, and made a short timelapse video of the work, which is quite unique!!


  • 2016 here we come!

Its that time of year to ask you good folks if you would like to help the museum by becoming a member of the Bentwaters Aviation Society.

Members of the Bentwaters Aviation Society set-up and run the museum at Bentwaters. Those of you who have visited us will know that the museum looks fantastic and we have a great group of volunteers who are passionate about telling the story of the part in history that you folks who served at the ‘Twin-bases’ did.

A big chunk of the museums income comes from Membership subscriptions to the society, which helps to fund new exhibits, displays, aircraft restoration, and pay for running expenses (e.g.CCTV cameras are being installed this winter) etc.

If anyone would like to join the Society it will be a tremendous help for us not only financially, but for support as well. Joining options and prices for people in Europe/USA can be found on the BAS website that you can find here. The yearly membership starts on the 1st of January.


  • The restoration of the Jeep CJ-10a is complete!

Simon Parker took the opportunity on December 20th to take some photos of the just completed restoration of the Jeep CJ-10a at Bentwaters before the rain arrived, so here she is in all her glory. Well done to Steve Howlett & Jason Himpson for their hard work to achieve this.


  • Get ready for the 2016 Classic Car Show at the BCWM!

The BCWM are hosting a Classic Car Show in April 2016 – why not come along and enjoy seeing a collection of classic vehicles as well as the museum and it’s exhibits – full details can be found here.


  • Restoration at the BCWM isn’t just about aircraft.

The BCWM has a small tug that has recently started being restored to it’s former glory – a brief history and some images of the process can be seen below.

The Jeep CJ-10a was contract built for the US Air Force as a tug to move around flightline equipment and Aircraft. There were approx. 2188 made built between 1984-1986 in the VAM factory Mexico.

The flight line tugs had some special features to make them better for towing, and most of this centred around weight. These are heavy, a lot heavier that they look! The front bumper is 1/2 inch channel, and had a large pintle hitch. The rear bumper is thick and heavy as well, and has 3 huge pintle’s, with the center one being moveable for easy hookup. They also have a large weight box under the “bed” that weighs 12-1400 lbs. All together they weigh in the 6000 lb stock.

Besides the weight and the bed, the CJ is a right old mixture of “spare parts”. Front axle is ‘dead’ power is by the rear axle only and this is 80 inches wide with a limited slip. The engine is a Nissan SD-33 diesel, transmission is an odd ball TF727 with a Dodge Industrial 440 Big Block bell housing with no shift fork, stuck in 4 low. Top speed is 25 MPH, the wheel base is a short 88 inches.


  • Watch XX741 in action via YouTube.

Following on from the launch of the donations appeal for XX741, why not take a look at some videos on our dedicated YouTube channel to see her in action…

Visit our YouTube channel here.


  • Can you help our Jaguar?

The BCWM have just launched an appeal for donations to assist with the restoration of Sepecat Jaguar XX741. If you would like to find out more about what we are trying to do, please take a look at our dedicated page on the BCWM website here.

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