The Royal Airforce Museum
The new Milestones of Flight building bridges the gap between the existing disparate museum buildings at RAF Hendon, while forming a focal point for the whole site. Housing a collection of classic aircraft, the barrel vaulted form is clad externally in stainless steel, evoking the sleek fuselages of modern planes. Internally, semi-translucent fabric panels conjure up images of the stick and dope construction of early aircraft.
The Milestones of Flight Museum has a strong emphasis on natural light; a continuous roof light at the apex of the barrel vault allows daylight to fall onto the fabric panels, creating huge scalloped shadows at particular moments during the day. The fabric also acts as an environmental filter, preventing harmful UV light from damaging the exhibits. The two ends of the building are entirely glazed in cast glass channels which glow at night and provide diffused light during the day.
2006 Civic Trust Award: Winner
2004 Museum and Heritage Award: Best Permanent Exhibition: Highly Commended