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Britain, places to visit, attractions, heritageThis is the place to search for places and things of interest to visit in Britain, by name, location, type, keyword – or just have a browse.  It is a growing directory – well over 700 entries as of February 2020.  Most entries have links for further information.


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Turnberry Aviation Memorial

A WW1 airfield was built in 1917 amidst a golf course that was laid out in 1902, with a luxury hotel being built in 1906. The airfield was initially an aerial gunnery school for the Royal Flying Corps, later the Royal Air Force. The RAF left after the war, but RAF Turnberry was reinstated for WW2, this time for coastal command and torpedo training. The hotel was used as a hospital during both wars. The memorial, standing lonely in the golf course, commemorates aircrew from the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA. Park by the entrance to Turnberry Lighthouse and walk across the golf course toward the lighthouse - where you will also find the remains of Robert the Bruce's castle and fabulous views across to Ailsa Craig.

Location/Address: Maidens Road
County: Ayrshire
Post Code: KA26 9PD
Main Historic Period: Modern
Tip/Nearby: Turnberry Lighthouse and Castle, Culzean Castle & Country Park
Primary Management: Unknown
Turnberry Lighthouse & Castle

The barely recognisable remains of one of the castles of Robert the Bruce - and possibly his birthplace - lie under and around a restored 19th century lighthouse, on a golf course, on a dramatic headland with views across to Ailsa Craig. The castle was probably 13th century and is believed to have been wrecked on Bruce's orders, to prevent the English using it. The lighthouse was built in 1873 to warn ships of the treacherous Bistro Rock. The light is now automated and in 2016 part of the lighthouse was converted into golf cafe and a luxurious two-bedroom apartment by the Trump Organisation. There's not much to see or do - unless you can afford to stay at the lighthouse or are playing golf - but it is a fascinating walk.  Park by the entrance to Turnberry Lighthouse and walk across the golf course. Also see the aviation memorial and the remains of RAF Turnberry's runways.

Location/Address: Maidens Road
County: Ayrshire
Post Code: KA26 9PD
Main Historic Period: Modern
Useful Website Address: Trump Turnberry website
Tip/Nearby: Culzean Castle & Country Park
Primary Management: Private - open to the public

IWM Duxford is a historic RAF airfield also used by the United States Army Air Forces during the Second World War. It houses the Imperial War Museum's huge collection of historic aircraft and other large vehicles like tanks. Permanent exhibitions include the American Air Museum, Battle of Britain, Land Warfare and Historic Duxford (many of the buildings are original). You can get up close and personal with some of the most famous aircraft ever, including the Spitfire, Lancaster, Concorde and Vulcan. It's probably the best aviation collection and museum in the country, and enormous, so allow enough time. Air Shows are a regular feature and Duxford is also home to the Airborne Assault and Royal Anglian Museums.

Location/Address: Imperial War Museum
County: Cambridgeshire
Post Code: CB22 4QR
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: Boy's toys? A visit to Duxford.
Useful Website Address: Imperial War Museum Duxford website
Tip/Nearby: Just off J10 of the M11
Primary Management: Imperial War Museum
Spitfires of 611 Squadron, Biggin Hill

Opened in January 2019, the Biggin Hill Memorial Museum tells the story of the famous RAF airfield, the people who served there, the local community and its residents from 1916 to 1951. The collection has a particular focus on the Battle of Britain, in which RAF Biggin Hill played a pivotal role. Many of the objects in the museum's collection are personal and have been donated by people who served or lived at Biggin Hill, or their relatives.

Location/Address: St George's RAF Chapel of Remembrance
Main Road
Biggin Hill
County: Kent
Post Code: TN16 3EJ
Main Historic Period: Modern
Useful Website Address: Biggin Hill Memorial Museum website
Tip/Nearby: Biggin Hill Heritage Hanger, Chartwell
Primary Management: Other

The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) is an aerial display team flying historic aircraft. They appear at shows throughout the country, state occasions and at events commemorating the Second World War.  The aircraft normally flown are an Avro Lancaster, a Supermarine Spitfire and a Hawker Hurricane. The flight is administratively part of No. 1 Group RAF, flying out of RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire. It is possible to see the aircraft at a visitor centre at Coningsby, though it is recommended you check which ones can be seen before making a special trip.

Location/Address: RAF BBMF Visitors Centre
Dogdyke Road
County: Lincolnshire
Post Code: LN4 4SY
Main Historic Period: Modern
Useful Website Address: Website of the BBMF
Tip/Nearby: Tattershall Castle, Lincoln
Primary Management: Military
Battle of Britain Monument

London's monument to the Battle of Britain is on Victoria Embankment, between Westminster Bridge and the RAF Memorial. It was unveiled by Prince Charles in 2005, cost £1.65 million and was funded entirely by public subscription. Among the donors was the Czech Republic. The monument is more than 80 feet (25 metres) long and was the brainchild of the late Bill Bond MBE, founder of the Battle of Britain Historical Society. It honours ‘the Few’, the RAF pilots who were outnumbered and who saved Britain from invasion in 1940. At its centre is a near life-size sculpture depicting airmen scrambling – running to their aircraft in order to intercept the enemy. Around the monument are the names of the Few – 2,936 airmen from fifteen nations who took part in the battle on the Allied side. Other panels show some of the other participants and contributors to the Battle of Britain and ultimate victory – including civilians.

Do not confuse this monument with the Battle of Britain Memorial in Kent. The post code is approximate.

Location/Address: Victoria Embankment
County: London
Post Code: SW1A 2JL
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: Battle of Britain Day
Tip/Nearby: Houses of Parliament, New Scotland Yard, RAF Memorial, Cleopatra's Needle
Primary Management: Local Authority

The Royal Air Force Museum is on the site of the historic Hendon aerodrome, just over 30 minutes from central London. If you like aircraft, you will love it.  There are entire hangers dedicated to WW1 aircraft, bombers of all sorts and the Battle of Britain, plus a lot more besides - including flight simulators. Be awed by the Avro Vulcan or Lancaster, or wonder how the flimsy aircraft of the early days managed to stay up.

There is a sister museum in Cosford, Shropshire.

Location/Address: Grahame Park Way
County: London
Post Code: NW9 5LL
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: Bomber!
Useful Website Address: RAF Museum website
Tip/Nearby: J4 of the M1 or reasonable walk from Colindale tube (Northern line).
Primary Management: Military

One of two RAF museums in Britain (the other one is in Hendon, north London), RAF Cosford displays 70+ aircraft, including the world's oldest Spitfire, with exhibits shown in three historic hangers. On site is the National Cold War Exhibition, which tells the story of this uncertain period in our history and where you can see all three of Britain's V-Bombers - the Vulcan, Victor and Valiant.

Location/Address: Shifnal
County: Shropshire
Post Code: TF11 8UP
Main Historic Period: Modern
Useful Website Address: RAF Cosford website
Tip/Nearby: Ironbridge, Boscobel House
Primary Management: Military
Sea Harrier at RNAS Yeovilton

The Fleet Air Arm Museum tells the story of the Royal Navy in the air. There are over 90 aircraft, from biplanes to supersonic jets, plus thousands of other artefacts, on show in four exhibition halls. It is Europe's largest naval aviation Museum. In addition it houses the first British Concorde, which you can go on board, and the 'Aircraft Carrier Experience', a fascinating tour round a realistic mocked-up carrier. The museum is exceptionally well laid out.

Location/Address: Royal Naval Air Station
County: Somerset
Post Code: BA22 8HW
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: A visit to the Fleet Air Arm Museum
Useful Website Address: Fleet Air Arm Museum website
Tip/Nearby: Lytes Cary Manor, Glastonbury
Primary Management: Military

Orford Ness is Europe's largest shingle spit, approximately 10 miles long running between the River Alde and the North Sea in Suffolk. It is an internationally important area of shingle habitat, home to a huge variety of wildlife, much of it fragile and precious. It was also used for secret military testing and experimentation, including for aircraft, radio, radar, ballistics and atomic weapons, since the First World War until after the Cold War. Limited access is available via National Trust Ferry from Orford.

Location/Address: Orford Quay
County: Suffolk
Post Code: IP12 2NU
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: What really happened at Orford Ness?
Tip/Nearby: Orford Castle, Havergate Island (RSPB)
Primary Management: National Trust
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