Long Term Lease Offer
The charity can announce that in 2015 it received an offer from its landlords, Grainger Plc, to purchase a 125 year leasehold on the whole museum site.
In response, and following a yearlong feasibility study, the group is currently developing a project which could potentially see all extant buildings on the site utilised within an expanded museum project; to include an aviation related education centre - in the current museum building - and an exhibition and public hire venue.
The site itself includes an extremely rare pre-war RAF Wireless Telegraphy building - only discovered when the charity took up residence in 2005. This was the hub of a series of buildings erected on the site up to the late 1980s which, collectively, represent a unique surviving aspect of Cold War history. In view of this, careful consideration is being given to potential listed status on the site, although any decision by the group would be closely subject to a proven benefit to fundraising.
The site project would also provide floor space to enable the museum to collect and display a limited number of aircraft. Currently, under the museum’s own strict collecting policy, aircraft can only be collected if facility exists to display them indoors.
The project study, which has included exploratory discussions with Heritage Lottery Fund, is currently awaiting pre-planning advice from Suffolk Coastal District Council and - subject to outcome - it is hoped that a dedicated major fundraising campaign will be launched in the summer.