Angers-Loire Air Passion Museum.

4 Jun

This place was our surprise find from the previous day. An aviation museum , based at the City Aeroport. The previous evening we had again done a couple of laps around the Lac de Maine to pay for our red wine and BBQ. Feeling fit we arrived in good time from the Peage to this Gem of a place.

One of the first exhibits was this marvellous model of a Concorde which operated until 2003. What a sad end to a superb aircraft.

  Early in our visit we were approached by an elderly French gentleman from a group of others. They were all pilots and were acting as guides at the museum. He spoke a liitle English and with my “schoolboy” French we got by. Treated like VIPs, we were introduced to this Gentleman Airman who was described as a famous pioneer from Paris. He took a Piper Grasshopper , which had been restored from a crash site in marshy ground ( Lac de Maine ? pre man made lake era?) and flew a couple of circuits around the Airfield. He was treated as a hero by the rest of his group. Do you recognise him? Please comment if you can identify him.


As we watched this famous pilot taking off, a bi-plane performed aerobatics above our heads ! For me, it was like the old days at Meir Aerodrome in Stoke-on-Trent, watching the ex RAF flyers in their gliders and Tiger Moth with Eric Clutton (now 90 yo and STILL flying from his US airport located home) Age to these guys is meaningless. These old pilots knew who you are Eric. Take a bow ! Key words for them were F.R.E.D., and Diesel Doctor !

  This Hybrid , partially solar powered lane ,(twin wing) ,had been flown in by the celebrated pioneer who had flown it across the Atlantic.

This l’Eclair, propellor driven car is somewhat older. I hope it slowed down for horses !!!

Almost as we were leaving, the original guide re-claimed my chum and I and we were given a rapid tour to make sure that we had not missed some key exhibits. taken up into the lofty heights on “fire-escapes” we saw heart churning reports of WWII deaths , one of a 19 yo American pilot who died at Angers , along with parts from his aircraft. The Frenchman was especially proud of the German wreckage, shot down locally. He did however praise the WWII German aircraft. He also praised the Hurricane almost as much as the Spitfire. What a reception we had from these people !

  France has an undisputed aviation pioneering past. I can highly recommend this place if you are within passing distance.

  A fantastic day out.

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