Cosford marks Air Force centenary

Festival celebrates 100 years of the RAF.

The Royal Air Force Museum Cosford will be celebrating 100 years of the Royal Air Force (RAF) with a nostalgic Bank Holiday Weekend event on 1-2 April 2018, packed with displays and activities for the whole family to enjoy.

Founded on 1st April 1918, the centenary year provides a unique opportunity to commemorate the world’s first and most famous independent Air Force and the extraordinary success, achievement and sacrifice of the RAF.

The 100 Years of the RAF Festival will see re-enactors, living historians, interpreters and a variety of entertainers bring the Museum to life with authentic experiences for visitors to enjoy. A walk-through history, exploring the 100 years of the Royal Air Force, vintage vehicles and children’s activities will be nestled amongst the historical, pioneering aircraft on display and will engage visitors throughout their tour of the Museum site.

WHAT’S ON over the festival weekend:

– Chat amongst Second World War pilots, have a go at plotting maps, or relax in the Officer’s Mess.
– Take aim and fire with a have-a-go anti-aircraft area. For the young and the young at heart, take a seat behind replica anti-aircraft guns and see whether you can catch the enemy (charges apply).
– Join family friendly interactive talks; get involved in tactical mapping, learn how to scramble to all manner of aircraft and explore RAF missions in the wider world.
– Wonder at the skills of pilots in the new Jet Age and practice your own Scramble to the Vulcan.
– Watch Rolls-Royce Merlin Mk500 and Bristol Hercules Mk216 demonstrations (2nd April only).
– Meet the originators of the Royal Flying Corps and see up close what these young pilots undertook to defend our skies 100 years ago.
– Meet serving personnel from the RAF today and hear more about their roles.
– Marvel at some of the earliest technologies in flying machines, from bi-planes to airships, and hear how integral their roles were in making the Royal Air Force what it is today.
– Hear the stories of peacetime operations throughout history, the Royal Air Force’s wider community involvement, and its continuing spirit.
– Dress up in RAF attire and grab some props from the Museum’s handling collection and take photos as a memento of your day.

The 100 Years of the RAF Festival will run from 10am to 5pm on Sunday 1st and Monday 2nd April 2018. On arrival, make sure to pick up your free handy festival map to help guide you round the site and ensure you don’t miss out on any of the displays! The Museum will also be operating a free shuttle bus service from Cosford train station for any visitors travelling by train or using the park and ride and will run continuously throughout the day. For more information about the event visit

Plus, a new display which celebrates the first 100 years of the RAF will be open to visitors in time for the festival weekend. Highlighting the principle roles of the RAF; Attack, Defence, Support and Prepare, the display also incorporates a snapshot timeline and artefacts spanning 100 years including uniforms, equipment, tools, personal possessions and commemorative items.

In addition, a collection of life size silhouettes will be positioned around the Museum site, sharing the personal stories of RAF personnel throughout the years, spanning a variety of roles within the service.

The new display is supported by National Lottery Players through the Heritage Lottery Fund and with support from BAE Systems and is part of the RAF Museum’s RAF Centenary Programme across its two sites in London and Cosford. For more information about the RAF Museum’s RAF Centenary Programme visit