I was expecting great things when I went to visit the IBCC.
Sadly from where I live, 40 miles North of Lincoln, there was not ONE heritage sign to indicate where the place is !
The museum is basically one room with a mere handful of artifacts ( 3 I believe) and a multitude of computer touch and listening aids.
The small IPad screens ran to fast to be able to look and read the inscriptions.
A large wall screen played a film about the air-war then a map of Europe showed the bombing campaign, a flashing light came on which corresponded to a calendar that was moving from 1939 to 1945. It did not list the locations of the bombing ?
Pet hate of mine is that the RAF undertook 'Operations' not 'Missions'
When I ask about exhibits concerning Bomber County' the reply was that the centre was about those that paid the price of freedom. Well thats all well and good but there would have been an opportunity to have a photographic display showing conditions and life on any RAF station that these men had to endure.
Reference to 'Bomber County' was an Ordnance Survey map of Lincolnshire that lit small lights when you pressed a button ? No details really.
Perhaps I am use to seeing numerous exhibits and artifacts that you can view and read, there was not a single model of any aircraft to be seen either, in fact my other half said the place was 'Soul less'
The only good thing was the steel plates that lists the 55, 000+ killed carrying out the campaign and I believe this is now the only located where they are all named.
I cannot recommend the place until they improve the visitor experience, in fact my recent visit to Thorpe Camp revealed a lot more about life during those days.
Nor can I run with 'The Emperors New clothes' despite the numerous plaudits I have read about through the media.
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I suspect all the funding went on the memorial itself. Hopefully it will evolve.
I personally, being a big kid, would love to see a turret mock-up that you could operate and shoot at a computer generated target. I dare say a mock-up of a bomb-aimers position with a similar set-up would be politically incorrect - unless it was over a bombing range
To me, the most poignant thing about the place is that it's at least three decades too late. From Aaron to Zywina (though I might have missed some) there is the potential to get some 50,000 families to visit, though I doubt most will visit more than once. The map of Lincolnshire airfields also included Winthorpe, and I suspect that Harlaxton has moved a little.
No. Always in Nottinghamshire. When 300 Sqn's Battles went to Swinderby, there wasn't enough room for all their personnel, so some bods had to live in tents at Winthorpe. Makes it counts as a Bomber Command airfield though.