de Havilland Aircraft Heritage Centre
Design centre for the de Havilland Mosquito and site of the de Havilland Museum
Period of construction:
1900 - 1949
Transport Trust plaque:
PO. Box 107, Salisbury Hall, London Colney, Herts AL2 1BU
The first Salisbury Hall was built in 1507 by Sir John Cutte, Treasurer to King Henry VII and Henry VIII, but the current building was built in 1668 by James Hoare, a London banker. Nell Gwynne lived in a cottage by the bridge to the Hall. The Hall was purchased by Winston Churchill's mother, Lady Randolph Churchill, in 1905; then by Sir Nigel Gresley, who designed the A4 Pacific Steam Locomotives for the LNER, in the early 1930's.
In September 1939, the de Havilland Aircraft Company established the Mosquito design team in the Hall and the prototype (Mosquito E0234/W4050) was built in out buildings. When the company left in 1947, the Hall slipped into a derelict condition. However, in 1955 the Hall was taken in hand by Walter Goldsmith, who restored it and opened it up to the public in 1955. He brought back the prototype Mosquito as one of the attractions in 1959, leading to the establishment of the Mosquito Aircraft Museum.
The Centre has some thirty aircraft on display, under restoration or in store, including the complete fuselage of DH106 Comet 1A F-BGNX. In addition to Mosquito E0234/W4050, the collection includes two now very rare complete Mosquito airframes - an FB6 and a TT.35 - as well, as the rear fuselage section of a TT.35. There is also a composite nose and fuselage section from a BAPC.232 Horsa I/II.
The DH82 Tiger Moth on display marks one of the world's great aviation success stories. Developed by Geoffrey de Havilland during the early 1930s and flown for the first time on 26 October 1931, the biplane became the most important elementary trainer used by Commonwealth forces. More than 1,000 Tiger Moths were delivered before WWII, and subsequently around 4,000 were built in the UK with an extra 2,000 being manufactured in Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Bramson, Alan, The Tiger Moth Story, Crecy Publishing, ISBN-10: 0859791033 (2005)
Birtles, Philip, Hatfield Aerodrome - A History, British Aerospace, ISBN-10: 0952161303 (1993)
Davies, R. E. G. & Birtles, Philip, de Havilland Comet: The World's First Jet Airliner, Paladwr Press, ASIN: B0014GEYZ6 (1999)
Darling, Kevin, de Havilland Comet, Crowood Press, ISBN-10: 1861267339 (2005)
Graham-Cowell, J., de Havilland Comet: The World's First Jet Airliner, Mach III Plus, ISBN-10: 1898129444 (1999)
Howe, Stuart, de Havilland Mosquito: An Illustrated History: Vol 1, Crecy Publishing, ISBN-10: 0947554769 (1998)
Jackson, Aubrey Joseph, de Havilland Aircraft Since 1909, Putnam Aeronautical, ISBN-10: 085177802X (1987)
Jones, Barry, de Havilland Twin-Boom Fighters: Vampire, Venom and Sea Vixen, Crowood Press, ISBN-10: 1861266812 (2004)
Phipp, Mike, The Brabazon Committee and Airliners 1945 - 1960, The History Press, ISBN-10: 0752443747 (2007)
Royal Australian Air Force, Tiger Moth Pilot's Notes, Facsimile Edition, Air Data Publications, ISBN-10: 0859790886 (1985)
Skinner, Stephen, British Airliner Prototypes Since 1945, Midland Publishing, ISBN-10: 1857802993 (2008)
Thirsk, Ian, de Havilland Mosquito: An Illustrated History: Vol 2, Crecy Publishing, ISBN-10: 0859791025 (2008)
UK Government, East of England: Case Study: Hatfield Aerodrome, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, ASIN: B001PDIOFY (2005)
Opening times vary - visit website, email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01727 826400/822051
How To Find:
By road: Off J22 M25, via B556. The museum is adjacent to Salisbury Hall - location map here.
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