[Cross-posted from the RAF Museum Blog]
Here are the first few paragraph of my first post over on the blog of the RAF Museum where I work.
This is a good question and one I will try to answer in my first blog post.
Actually, before I do that I think a bit of context is needed to try to explain the reason why my position as the RAF Museum’s resident Aviation Historian was established. The simple answer is that there was not one. The RAF Museum has many talented and knowledgeable staff but the museum has never had an historian. Indeed, the closest the RAF Museum has come to having an historian came in the 1970s when H. Montgomery Hyde occupied a Leverhulme Research Fellowship here at the RAF Museum while he was researching his 1977 book, British Air Policy. Indeed, this book formed the first volume in a series known as RAF Museum Studies that was published by Heninemann.
Alas, it seems this series never went past the first volume; however, Hyde’s work remains an important text in the scholarly study of the RAF’s history. However, I digress. I started my job here in November 2013 and it emerged after the RAF Museum constituted a Research Board to advise the Director General on exhibitions, research, publications and wider academic engagement. The board has brought together some of the UK’s leading air power specialist and is chaired by Professor Richard Overy. The Research Board’s formation, and my position, illustrates the RAF Museum’s genuine desire to engage with academia as part of our public programme as we move forward to 2018 and the centenary of the RAF’s formation. This does not, however, describe what I do every day. Many of my friends think I run around the RAF Museum making aircraft noises but I promise I only do that at lunch!
You can read the rest of the entry here. I won’t spoil but to say I have a cool job!