The Boscombe Down Aviation Collection, also known as the Old Sarum Airfield Museum, is a popular place to visit for aviation enthusiasts. It is home to a large collection of military aircraft from the Cold War era and the cockpits of many of the aircraft are open and visitors are able to climb inside and play with the controls.
The museum was previously located at the Boscombe Down airfield but it relocated to Old Sarum in July 2012. Although the Old Sarum airfield closed at the end of October 2019, the aviation collection is still in business.
What to see at the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection
The focus of the collection comprises military aircraft from the Cold War era and it includes a large number of aircraft including several of historical importance such as the de Havilland Comet C Mk 2 Sagittarius and the Sea Harrier XZ 457.
It is a fun place to visit as the cockpits of most of the aircraft are open and visitors are able to climb inside and play with the controls.
It is a great outing if you are an aviation enthusiast and there is nowhere else in the United Kingdom where you can sit in as many aircraft cockpits.
Visiting the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection
Despite its name, the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection is located at the former Old Sarum airfield around 5km (3 miles) north of Salisbury, not at Boscombe Down in Amesbury as you may expect. It is in the village of Old Sarum, which is a short distance north of the Old Sarum historic site. Old Sarum is served by local bus routes 11 Park and Ride, R11, X4 and X67 although it is also possible to walk here from Salisbury in around an hour.
The collection is open throughout the year, six days per week (Tue–Sun) during summer and three days per week (Fri–Sun) in winter.
Most people spend between one and two hours visiting the site.