Closed 20th January 2017

Regrettably, we are closed this weekend (20th January 2017) due to high winds causing damage to our roof.  Our apologies to anyone that may have been planning on coming this weekend and we hope you will be able to visit us next weekend instead.

Hovercraft Rides!

Missed out on a chance of a Hovercraft ride at our Show in September? Then come and visit us on Saturday 21st October and have a pleasure flight around the Solent in association with Hovertravel

Also, you can travel to us directly from Portsmouth or Ryde with Hovertravel or maybe you are on the mainland and fancy a day trip to the lovely Isle of Wight?

Pleasure Trip Prices are : Adult £15, Child £6 and under 5s FREE

Either pay on the day or you can pre-book with Hovertravel and find prices for the crossings directly to and from Ryde https://www.hovertravel.co.uk/Hover-Museum/index.php

Weather Dependant, the schedule is:

  • 10:30 Depart Ryde
  • 11:00 Onwards – Pleasure Trips from Lee-on-the-Solent
  • 12:00 Depart Lee-on-the-Solent
  • 12:15 Arrive Ryde
  • 14:00 Depart Ryde
  • 14:30 Onwards – Pleasure Trips from Lee-on-the-Solent
  • 15:40 Depart Lee-on-the-Solent
  • 15:55 Arrive Ryde

Still can’t make this date? Then stay tuned to our website for more dates coming soon!

Hovershow 2017

Don’t forget about the Hovershow this weekend (16th & 17th Sep).  We will be offering 15 minute rides on the Hovertravel craft normally used between the Isle of Wight and the mainland!

If that wasn’t enough, we will be open all weekend with 40+ hovercraft to view and climb in, model hovercraft, racing craft, hot food, kids activities, candy floss, face painting, tombola and much more!

It will be a brilliant family day out so come down and see what the world of Hovercraft is all about!

Plenty of parking is available in the compound next to our entrance (opposite the slipway).  Go to our Visit Us page for more travel information!

 

Proudly supporting the Merchant Navy

A red Merchant Navy flag with the Union Jack is flying at the Hovercraft Museum on a flag pole at the seafront.September 3rd every year marks Merchant Navy Day, celebrating this often forgotten service. Many of our members either serve or have served in the MN and this year The Hovercraft Museum is pleased to be supporting charity Seafarers UK by flying a Red Ensign, joining over 600 other institutions around the UK. More information can be found here at http://www.seafarers.uk/campaigning/merchant-navy-day/

A call for tour guides

We are looking for volunteers, young and old, who would like to be trained as Guides at the museum. We will provide full training, support and the opportunity to join a friendly developing team of enthusiastic volunteers.

We are looking for people who:

  • Enjoy interacting with the public
  • Are willing to learn
  • Have an interest in hovercraft
  • Are prepared to give up time mainly on Saturdays

If you want to find out more please use the contact form on the contact page or speak to Jim Gray at the museum.

‘The Princess Anne’ works update

20170416_115137_HDR
What a busy month since the last update! One of the major operations from our list has been completed and a number of other cosmetic jobs have been carried out, all helping to make ‘Anne’ as I keep saying, “look like a hovercraft again”

All four propellers now sit proudly atop their pylons, with all of the cowlings/covers in place. This was a major undertaking due to all of the necessary heavy lifting equipment, health and safety considerations and weather ( of course it was windy when we opted to do it!) Huge thanks to all of our kind volunteers who helped with this task and our neighbour, MRB Transport for assisting with the Crane.    ( look out for a short film of this – coming soon)

Our midweek volunteer team have replaced the hinges and refitted both forward emergency exit doors, with the fresh paint showing how good the craft will look.20170416_122238_HDR

Finally, the Radars have been replaced on top of the cockpit after being refinished and a large, unsightly and redundant power cable has been removed.

Next, we are preparing for the polishing of the Makrolon Bow windows that have gone hazy over time and the first stage of the painting by building safe work towers to access the fore decks that must be replaced beforehand.

Steve

Reserve our New Book Now!

 For all you Hovercraft enthusiasts!   Our new book is landing soon, and you have the chance to reserve your copy for a limited time only!  It’s a brilliantly produced book, authored by our very own Jim Gray!  Up till the release date on 14th May we will offer a £5 discount, leaving only £9.99 to pay.  If you are interested please take a look at www.hovercraft-museum.org/reserve-the-hovercraft-book to secure your copy.  Copies are flying off the shelves so don’t miss the chance to secure yours!


THE HOVERCRAFT: PHOTOGRAPHS FROM THE ARCHIVES OF THE WORLD’S ONLY HOVERCRAFT MUSEUM

by Jim Gray

 

51RQpkUnyAL£14.99 £9.99 (Pre-order Price)

Lee-on-the-Solent is synonymous with planes and seaplanes, but it is also the home of another, slightly more unusual form of transport – the hovercraft.

After the first cross-channel crossing by a hovercraft in 1959, there was a revolution in design and development. Within a decade, the mighty SRN4, capable of carrying 400 passengers and sixty cars across the English Channel in less than forty minutes, had arrived. As the commercial hovercraft thrived, the military also continued to innovate; the British Interservice Hovercraft (Trials) Unit (IHTU) being established in 1961.

Utilising the archive of the world’s only hovercraft museum, based in Lee-on-the-Solent and boasting more than seventy historic craft, Jim Gray uses a wealth of rare images – many unpublished – to explore the importance and impact of the hovercraft, offering a fascinating glimpse into a vehicle that has captivated the imagination of the public for more than fifty years.

SR.N4 ‘The Princess Anne’ update

Dear friends

As the newly appointed Project Manager for the SR.N 4 Princess Anne, I would like to provide you all with the first of many updates on the various restoration activities.

After a short period of adjustment at the Museum over the winter (which included new trustees, volunteers and associated handovers) we can now start in earnest, our plans for the restoration of our largest exhibit, The Princess Anne.

As we move into springtime, the opportunity to begin our long list of works must be grabbed with both hands! Several activities have been highlighted as priorities with many less pressing jobs also identified.

At the top of the list is the need to make the rather fragile roof watertight and safe to walk on, which is no small feat given the large square metre area! A number of options have been considered for this, none of them cheap or quick to implement, so in the short term, individual repairs will continue to be carried out by our small engineering team.

Equally important is the impending transfer of the Propellers from her sister craft The Princess Margaret. All of the preparative work has been completed and this week, we are in the final stages of ensuring that the health and safety and permissions aspects of the operation are all satisfied.

All being well, the work will commence in the early morning of Saturday 18th March, with a small focussed team of personnel. The removal of props from Margaret is expected to be completed this weekend, but the whole swap process could take up to 2 weeks depending on the weather and other factors, so we ask that during this time, all volunteers/ visitors please observe the health and safety requirements that will be in place on site i.e Hi Viz jackets, Barriers, signage and instructions.

Also, a priority is the re-painting of the craft in the Seaspeed livery. The Paint and associated equipment is currently being sourced in preparation of the proposed work party that will make a start on this on the 23rd March.

There is also now a Whiteboard located near the bow ramp of Princess Anne, which details the status of the priority jobs. As always, if you would like to come down and help, we would greatly appreciate some hands-on volunteers!  (See our volunteer page for more info)

All of this, of course, requires funding on a scale that matches the size of the craft, so look out for some funding incentives in the near future and please- spread the word!  In the meantime, if you haven’t already, please take a look at our SRN4 GoFundMe page at https://uk.gofundme.com/srn4hovercraft.

Steve McGarry on behalf of the Trustees