Principal Conservator, Stuart McDonald cleans a Red Arrows Hawk at the National Museum of Flight. Image (c) Paul Dodd (4)

National Museum of Flight’s Red Arrows Hawk and Scotland’s Concorde mark major anniversaries

As the National Museum of Flight commences seven day opening for the new season this week, the East Lothian attraction is encouraging the public to come and see two of its most iconic aircraft as they mark significant milestones.

Press images are available here and a selection of general photographs of the museum can be downloaded here.

This year marks 60 years since the formation of the Red Arrows Display Team. The National Museum of Flight’s 1980 Red Arrows Hawk T.1A, the only Hawk on display in Scotland, has its own special anniversary, with 2024 marking 25 years since it flew in Red 1 position over Edinburgh in celebration of the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999.

Scotland’s Concorde is also marking a major milestone, having arrived at the National Museum of Flight 20 years ago on 19 April 2004 following an epic, 16-day journey across the UK.  The British Airways aircraft was welcomed by cheering crowds and an RAF Tornado flypast and the supersonic superstar has since been seen by over 1.5 million people.

The National Museum of Flight has also announced a programme of events and activities for the new season. Family activities over the Easter holidays are supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. Flying into the Future is running until 5 April and includes technical challenges and Civil Aviation Hangar tours as part of the Edinburgh Science Festival programme.

The year ahead also sees the return of the attraction’s popular Awesome Bricks LEGO® event from 15-16 June where families will be able to celebrate Father’s Day weekend with hands-on building activities and challenges. On 31 August a new all-day festival, 360 Fest, will feature cycle stunt team, The Clan, circus displays and STEM science activities.

The new season includes the chance to hear about the work of the Museum’s conservation team in a series of behind the scenes talks in the Conservation hangar.  Outdoors, original Second World War features of the site are also being conserved, including an Air Raid Shelter and a Blast Shelter, which can be explored by visitors later in the year.

Steve McLean, General Manager at the National Museum of Flight, said:

The aircraft in our Museum have some amazing stories to tell, including our Red Arrows Hawk which allows people to see this much-loved icon on the ground and to learn about its history as an advanced training aircraft and its involvement in some of the country’s most significant celebrations. Scotland’s Concorde is probably our most famous exhibit and twenty years on, is still enthralling visitors who can step on board to see how celebrities such as Sir Elton John and Victoria Beckham used to travel and can learn about the science behind the aircraft’s development.  Combined with some fantastic family events and the chance to enjoy our full Museum experience, we hope as many visitors as possible will visit this year for a great day out.”

The National Museum of Flight is located on one of the UK’s best-preserved Second World War airfields and includes two historic wartime aircraft hangars which are packed with exciting displays telling the stories of military and civil aviation over the past century. Other aircraft on display include a 1963 Avro Vulcan bomber, the 1952 de Havilland Comet plus an example of the iconic Spitfire that played such an important role in the Second World War.

The attraction houses the family-friendly Fantastic Flight gallery with its interactive exhibits where visitors can explore the science of aviation and discover how aeroplanes fly. They are also able to learn about East Fortune’s wartime heritage in the Museum’s Fortunes of War exhibition.

The National Museum of Flight will be open seven days a week from 10am until 5pm from 29 March 2024.

Book in advance to save.

Adult tickets from £13.50. National Museums Scotland Members free.

15% off when you book as a family.

Tickets can be booked online at

Notes to editors

  1. National Museums Scotland is one of the leading museum groups in the UK and Europe and it looks after collections of national and international importance. The organisation provides loans, partnerships, research and training in Scotland and internationally. Our individual museums are the National Museum of Scotland, the National Museum of Flight, the National Museum of Rural Life and the National War Museum. The National Museums Collection Centre in Edinburgh houses conservation and research facilities as well as collections not currently on display.

Twitter: @NtlMuseumsScot


Instagram: @NationalMuseumsScotland


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