Frequently asked questions

The RAF Museum does not hold service records or have access to them.

  • Records for First World War service personnel are held by The National Archives and can be accessed on genealogy websites including Ancestry and Find My Past.
  • Second World War service records are held by the Ministry of Defence and applications for access can be made through the records request form on their website. These are currently being transferred to The National Archives and the process should be complete by 2027.

The RAF Museum is unable to trace the next of kin of RAF personnel. Civil registration and other records are a useful source for further information and are accessible on various websites including FreeBMD, Find My Past, and Ancestry.  

The RAF did not routinely photograph its personnel on enlistment into the service and it is unlikely that we will be able to find an identified image of an individual. There are some photographs of personnel in the Museum’s collection and formal photographs of units, not all of which have names recorded. Our photograph collection can be searched on our online catalogue.

Flying logbooks were declared official documents but RAF personnel could ask to keep them after leaving the service. Many logbooks unclaimed by former service personnel or their next of kin were destroyed in 15 September 1960. A small selection was kept by The National Archives. There are also logbooks in museum or private collections. The RAF Museum holds a substantial number of logbooks. To find out more about them, search our online catalogue.

Information is available on our website about our filming and photography policy. To make a filming request, please contact

It is possible to access some aircraft including the Supermarine Spitfire Mk XVI and Short Sunderland MR5 at our London site. However, not all aircraft are accessible due to health and safety and conservation reasons.  

To find out more about them, search our online catalogue. You can find out more about our amazing collection on our Collections Online platform.

To find out about the aircraft in our collection, please visit our Search Collections page and select either our Midlands or London site in the search box.

Thank you for your interest in donating an object for the RAF Museum’s collection. We ask prospective donors to complete our Donate an Artefact form. The details given will be considered by our Curators, who will provide a decision within 10 weeks. Our Donate an Artefact webpage provides further information on our acquisitions process.

Our loans programme is reduced until November 2024. Please refer to our page on loans from our collection for further updates.

Visits to our Reserve Store at Stafford are no longer practical for us to support as we work on implementing our Midlands Development Programme. This will include relocation of these collections to our new Collections Storage Hub at the Museum’s Cosford site, where they will be publicly accessible when not on display.

Due to ethical considerations, we are unable to offer valuations. We recommend that you approach an auctioneer or another specialist who can provide information on an object’s market value.

To discuss a group visit, please contact us at We welcome interest in viewing our collections. Arrangements will consider staff availability.

Please visit the Reading Room page for booking information. Our new opening times are Wednesday-Thursday 10am to 4pm.