RAF Weyborne Comes Alive Again with the Sound of Aircraft
The original RAF Weyborne was established to support the Air Defence training camp at Weyborne on the North Norfolk Coast, now known to many as the Muckleburgh Military Collection.
The Camp originally opened as an Air Defence artillery training establishment in 1914 but saw a major expansion during the Second World War when it hosted large numbers of ATS who manned most of the UKs air defence artillery sites. The RAF opened a grass strip airfield from which it flew ‘Queen Bee’ remotely controlled aircraft used as targets by the Royal Artillery air defence gunners.
The site continued as an artillery training camp after the war years eventually closing its doors in 1967. It then fell in to a period of neglect before being purchased by a local landowner and ex RAF Sqn Ldr, Berry Savory. Mr Savory decided the site would be ideal as a military museum and he quickly embarked on a programme of purchasing military vehicles and aircraft for display, his over riding principle being that all the vehicles should be in working condition, something that has continued to this day.
The Museum opened as the Muckleburgh Collection in 1984 and upon the death of Berry Savory in 1998, his son Michael took over the day to day running and has continued to expand the museum with both new exhibits being added and extensive restoration projects being undertaken. Having been Lord Mayor of London in 2005, Sir Michael is no stranger to the military and was for sometime the Honorary Colonel to The London Regiment. The museum opens daily from the end of March until November.
With its large array of military vehicles on outside display, it was always going to be used as a training target by aircraft from Marham, this progressing, with Sir Michael’s blessing, into an ideal location for conducting Close Air Support training for Forward Air Controllers about to deploy on operations. The location and equipment is perfect for this essential training for both the aircrew and the troops they support on the ground.
The association of the Collection with the RAF also continues with RAF Marham being the beneficiary of largesse of the Museum, being the source of loan items from searchlights to staff cars, for various Station and Mess functions and more recently the ex RAF WWII staff car that transported Fiona Bruce around during the filming of the Antiques Road Show.
Muckleborough recently held its annual military open weekend where a contingent from the Tactical Imagery-Intelligence Wing and the RAF Rally Team put on displays This was the ideal opportunity for the Rally Team to showcase their car with demonstrations around the tank display area.