News story: RAF museum unveils centenary celebration plans after Budget boost

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  1. The RAF museum in Hendon has outlined its plans to celebrate and commemorate the centenary of the RAF in 2018, after the Chancellor announced in his Budget that the museum is to receive a £2.5 million grant to support the programme.

    The museum revealed its ambitious programme of activities for the summer of 2018, as the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Priti Patel, visited the museum to learn how the funding will be used.

    The museum’s plans include re-landscaping the site to create a sense of the original London Aerodrome that stood on the ground nearly 100 years ago.

    The museum will also build a new visitor centre with a café, shop and soft play area.

    A series of new permanent exhibitions will open in the summer of 2018. ‘The First 100 Years of the RAF’ and ‘Now and the Future’ exhibitions will enable visitors to understand the story of the RAF from its earliest years in the First World War to its global role today.

    The “Air Power in an Age of Uncertainty” exhibition will focus on the roles of the RAF since the early 1980s.

    The museum is also rolling out a new digital programme, “My RAF Story”, which will collect and share personal stories of the men and women of the Service to ensure they are preserved for future generations. Additionally, a new learning programme will aim to inspire young people in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

    Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Priti Patel said:


    The RAF Museum in Hendon is a great cause and I’m delighted that the LIBOR funding will provide a necessary cash injection towards their plans to celebrate this important landmark in the RAF’s history.

    So far, through LIBOR fines on banks, we’ve taken around £450 million from those who broke the rules and demonstrated terrible values, and used the funds to support our brave forces across the UK, and other good causes.‎

    This donation is a fitting way to mark the extraordinary contribution the RAF has made and continues to make in service to our country.

    Chief Executive of the RAF Museum Maggie Appleton said:


    The Museum’s RAF Centenary Programme is incredibly important as it commemorates 100 years of the Royal Air Force.

    The story we tell reflects the bravery, ingenuity and dedication of our people. It is a story that belongs to every one of us. We are therefore very grateful for the support and acknowledgement we received.

    The Royal Air Force (RAF) Museum was established in 1968 as a legacy of the RAF’s fiftieth anniversary. It opened on its London (Hendon) site in 1972 and at its Cosford site in the West Midlands in 1979.

    The museum is a national museum and a registered charity and currently welcomes around 700,000 visitors a year. Entrance is free of charge and the museum is supported by around £8.5 million grant in aid via the MOD, as well as by income from its fundraising and trading activities.

    Since October 2012 the government has been able to make a series of LIBOR fines announcements where it has been possible to use fines levied from those who have demonstrated the worst of values to support those who demonstrate the best of British values.

    Of the £450 million received, over £250 million has been given directly to support military charities and other good causes. This in addition to the £10 million each year commitment to support the Armed Forces Covenant in perpetuity.

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