Shuttleworth is a gem!

David Peace, GTO for the Tamworth Aviation Group, recommends a visit to the Shuttleworth Collection in Bedfordshire.

We have made several visits to Shuttleworth at Old Warden over the years as it’s perfect for my members who have a shared interest in Aviation Heritage. The collection was started by racer and pilot, Richard Ormond Shuttleworth, and it includes vintage aircraft from 1909 to the 1950s, cars, motorbikes and agricultural machinery. We enjoy stepping back in time to the 1930s at special themed flying days and vehicle parades.

A highlight is seeing the oldest flying aircraft in the country, a Blériot XI, dating from 1909, take to the air, alongside landmark planes such as the DH88 Comet, which won the 1934 London to Australia air race and the DH60X Moth – one of Richard’s own aircraft.

There’s more to see at Shuttleworth than the transport collection, however, as I discovered on our most recent visit. For the very first time I walked around the Swiss Garden, which is adjacent to the airfield. It’s built in a picturesque alpine style and there are 13 listed structures and a sculpture trail to follow.  This is a lovely tranquil place with inspiring views and recent restoration work has ensured it is accessible to all. With gardens to explore, a friendly cafe and a rich heritage collection this is the perfect place for a group visit.