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Royal Air Force Museum project is the subject of BBC documentary

PUBLISHED: 13:01 13 April 2012 | UPDATED: 14:12 10 October 2012

The Royal Air Force Museum's Grahame-White Watch Office Restoration Project has been made the subject of an hour-long documentary, set to be broadcast on BBC2 this Friday.

The Royal Air Force Museum's Grahame-White

Watch Office Restoration Project has been made the subject of an hour-long

documentary, set to be broadcast on BBC2 this Friday.

The program covers the dismantling of the

building at its original site, the salvaging

of its original materials, its relocation to the Museum and its final

restoration – overcoming the challenges caused by a quarter of a century’s

decay and vandalism.

The Watch Office was built in 1915 and formed part of Grahame-White’s aircraft

factory. It originally housed Claude

Grahame-White's office, the company boardroom, the accounts department and the

drawing office.

Viewers will be guided through the restoration

process by architectural engineer Charlie Luxton, who will explore the

traditional crafts used in the project and the difficulties posed to the

restoration team by the building’s original method of construction. Rather than

correcting the mistakes made in the past, the project adhered to the original

drawings in order to reconstruct the Watch Office exactly as it was in its


Meanwhile, architectural historian Dan

Cruickshank will cover the history of the building, and reveal the stories of

some of the people who worked there. These include Claude Graham-White himself,

who planned to transform Hendon into an aviation hub – with the site occupied

by the Museum as the world’s first international airport – and was nearly

written from history by those who showed little respect for his achievements.

Viewers can catch the BBC2 program at 9pm

on Good Friday.

The Claude Grahame-White Watch Office and

Hangar is open daily from 10am to 6pm and – like the rest of the Royal Air

Force Museum - is free to visit here for more details about the project.

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