The New Museum

The New Museum

No single center exists where the extensive history of aviation on the Isle of Wight can be exhibited, seen and experienced by the public.

Working in partnership with our member groups and with support from the public, our aim is to convert one of the aircraft hangars at Sandown Airport to create the Wight Aviation Museum. This will allow us to display our current exhibits as well as build our collection for the future.


The Princess Flying Boat under construction at the Columbine building in East Cowes.

The museum will recognise the fusion of marine and aviation skills that led to the building of 600 aircraft on the Island during WW1 and we will illustrate the intense "War in the Air" over the Isle of Wight, during the Battle of Britain.

An early Seaplane built by J S White of West Cowes, in 1916

We plan to unite two special icons of Island engineering excellence, the Spartan 3-seater and the Britten-Norman Islander.
The Simmonds Spartan 3 seater G-ABYN built at Somerton in Cowes, it's still airworthy & currently in New Zealand. The current owner Rod Hall Jones has lovingly restored the aircraft and would like her preserved at the Wight Aviation Museum. With your help & financial support combined with grant & fundraising assistance, we can bring one of the worlds rarest aircraft back home to the Isle of Wight.

Artist's Ivan Berryman’s painting of the BN2 Islander G-AVCN C/N 003 currently being restored by the volunteers of the "Britten-Norman Aircraft Preservation Society" (BNAPS) for public display.

We will also recognise the unique contribution made by ATA First Officer Mary Ellis in WW2, as well as her instigation of regular airline services to Sandown Airport. Mary was also one of several female pilots who flew fighter and bomber aircraft from the factories to the airfields during the 2nd World War as part of the Air Transport Auxiliary.

Mary_Ellis 1st Officer Mary Ellis ATA is shown with fellow pilots Joy Lofthouse and Molly Rose filming with Dermot O’Leary at Sandown Airport in preparation for the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in 2015 - Photo credit ©Phil Brace.

We also want to show the diversity of aerospace skills through showcasing a replica Black Arrow Rocket and bring people up to date with the current work of GKN Aerospace, IFPL Ltd, Airframe Assemblies, Britten-Norman and BAE Systems.

Black Arrow at Sandown

An artists impression showing the full scale replica Black Arrow at Sandown Airport

The 1st Museum

Our plans are to lease one of the main hangars at Sandown Airport and convert this into our first aviation museum. This will allow us to both build our collection and establish the museum as a viable tourist attraction.
Positioned close to the airport Control Tower and Bistro, the museum will be a short distance from the parking facilities.

The airport is located on the main route between Newport & Sandown and is in the ideal position for attracting visitors. The airport is also home to Airframe Assemblies one of the worlds leading Spitfire and classic war bird restoration companies and these aircraft are regular visitors to the airfield.

The museum will be free to enter and staffed by volunteers, enabling maximum access to all visitors.

  • Visitors will be able to view and research artifacts from the past in the surroundings of an active airfield.
  • Vintage aircraft will be running up, flying and being rebuilt, maintained and worked on.
  • Exhibitions will focus on showcasing the design and engineering expertise of the early pioneers who skillfully transferred marine knowledge into a new era of seaplanes, flying boats and aircraft.
  • Our "Aviation Timeline Display" will illustrate the history of both Aircraft and Spacecraft developed and built on the Isle of Wight over the last 120 years, as well as hightlighting Island based companies still involved in the aviation sector today.


Our Plans for the Future

We hope to obtain planning permission for a purpose built museum at Sandown Airport. This larger facility will be both a major tourist attraction and heritage center, enabling us to house many more classic aircraft and expand the space technology exhibition.

This will be a world leading attraction with a high level of public interaction and will also feature an education and hospitality center.



Outreach Program

Wight Aviation Museum aims to have a pro-active outreach program, engaging with education providers across the Isle of Wight.

Our team recently attend the 2017 Noel Turner Physics Festival at Cowes Enterprise College, the event was attended by over 2000 pupils from across the Island.


Our Fundraising Campaign

We are raising funds to help set up the museum, if you would like to support us and donate, our bank details are below.

If you are a UK Tax Payer we can also claim Gift Aid on your donation and increase this by 25%, please see the Gift Aid section of our membership form below for details.

Become a member for £3 per month.

For £3 per month or for a single of payment of £36 per year, you can also become a member supporter, please download the form below to join.

click here for membership form ( opens in new tab ).

You can also join by using the Mydonate button below and donating £36 or by setting up a recurring payment of £3 per month, simply choose the "Regular Donation" option and put a minimum of £3 in the donation amount box. Please state "New WAM Member" in the "Personalised Message" section. You will be contacted by email in due course with your membership details. The membership donations are also eligable for Gift Aid.

To donate please click on the link below or use our bank details for additional methods of payment.

Visit our charity page on BT 


Donations using our Bank Details

If you would like to donate and support us you can do so through internet banking or by crediting our account with a cheque at any branch. You can do this anonymously if you prefer, our account details are below:

Bank NatWest
Amount in £
Sort Code: 54-10-34
Account No: 16231031
Reference: Your Name or Anonymous if preferred

Contact Us

If you have any enquiries our contact details are below

  Wight Aviation Museum, Sandown Airport, Scotchells Brook Lane, Isle of Wight, PO36 0JP.

Wight Aviation Museum is a Charitable Company Limited by Guarantee.
Company Reg No: 10784045   Charitable Registration No: 1175948