A Brief History of the Bomber Command Museum
- Town Council suggested that a group be formed to "take care of the bomber."
- Application made to Corporate Registry to form the Nanton Lancaster Society.
- Nanton Lancaster Society is Incorporated.
- Inaugural General Meeting and the election of the first Board of Directors and Executive.
- Displays in Tourists Information Building.
- Society's objective identified as the creation of a museum with the Lancaster as the centrepiece.
- Membership of over 500 reported.
- Main instrument panel restored.
- First Newsletter authorised.
- Open Bomber Days (First guided tours of Lancaster).
- First Anson retrieved.
- Restoration Shop begins operation.
- Six Anson's acquired in a single day (Operation Annie).
- Second "Open Bomber Days".
- First Summer season featuring guided tours of Bomber begins.
- NLS float in Stampede Parade. (received honourable mention).
- 15,000 Visitors reported during summer season.
- Decision made to dedicate Lancaster to S/L Ian Bazalgette VC-DFC.
- Third annual "Open Bomber Days".
- Opening of expanded display area in Tourist Information Booth.
- CWH Lancaster flies over Nanton.
- Decision made to begin fund raising for 100' x 120'
(building to provide immediate protection for the Lancaster).
- Cornell acquired.
- Square footer and Lifetime Memberships available to promote funding for new building.
- Calgary Chapter formed.
- Planning for Bazalgette Dedication Day begins.
- Martin Turret on display.
- Cornell brought to Nanton.
- Committee formed to plan building construction.
- Bazalgette Dedication Day.
- Six more Anson's acquired (Operation Annie II).
- Sod Turning Ceremony for new Museum Building;
phase II to include electricity, heat, etc. phase III to include concrete floor.
- Building contract awarded.
- Chinook Singer's and Player's perform "Wish Me Luck" by Alvin Berger.
- Decision made to proceed with construction of both wings on building.
- Tires changed on Lancaster.
- Lanc moved into museum building.
- Decision made to complete interior of display wing.
- Rutherford print delivered to the Society.
- Museum displays moved from old Tourist Information. Bldg. to new museum.
- Grant received to complete restoration shop.
- "Open House" held at new museum for local residents.
- "Official opening" of the Nanton Lancaster Society Air Museum.
- First portion of concrete floor in main hanger is poured.
- Hangar floor concrete completed; interior of hanger walls completed.
- Presentation to the society of Torger Taerum's medals.
- Rear Turret opening Day
(This fully operational Rear Turret display was restored by members of the Calgary Chapter).
- Fiftieth Anniversary of Dambuster's Raid Commemoration.
- Official opening of front shop.
- Decision made to look into the possibility of producing a video for the museum.
- Crash Truck donation and restoration.
- Harvard on display.
- Have to loan Vickers to Edmonton (need expansion).
- Pathfinders Commemoration Day.
- CF 100 Acquired from Suffield and mounted outside museum as gate guardian.
- New sign designed.
- SAIT students begin work to produce short documentary.
- Society unveils display commemoration the 50th anniversary of the Sinking of the Battleship Tirpitz.
- Operation Manna Commemoration Day.
- SAIT students resume work on documentary project.
- Decision made to proceed with funding for Museum expansion.
- Decision made to restore the Lanc's starboard inner engine.
- The Museum goes On-line! with our web site.
- Begin planning for expansion of museum.
- The Nanton Lancaster Society's first published book becomes available.
'BAZ' is a biography of Squadron Leader Ian Bazalgette VC DFC, a Canadian Victoria Cross Recipient.
- School Band concert held in museum for first time.
- The Video "On The Wings of a Lancaster" produced by the Students from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology was unveiled to the public. Presentations were made to all the students involved with the project and to other people who helped out with the project. Special presentations (a copy of the video) were made to the actors and all people who appeared in the video.
- Fabric work completed on Fleet Fawn.
- Canadian Armed Forces 431 Air Demonstration Squadron (The Snowbirds) fly over Nanton.
- Society's tenth anniversary "A Salute To Those Who Served" commemoration day. Memorial unveiled by His Honour the Lt. Governor of Alberta, the Honouralble H.A. "Bud" Olson. Flypast of two CF-18's and the Confederate Air Force (CAF) B-17 "Sentimental Journey". Banquet and dance held in arena for the first time.
- Restoration of 6 wheel drive Fire Engine completed just in time (a matter of a few hours) for "Salute To Those Who Served" parade on July 27th.
- Harvard placed on display.
- 7200 square foot Museum Building Expansion Underway.
- Second Annual School Band concert held in museum.
- Restored Fleet Fawn placed on display.
- Bolingbroke #9899 arrives at the museum.
- Museum expansion completed.
- Beechcraft 18 'Expeditor' placed on display.
- 1941 RCAF 'CWT' truck donated to the museum.
- BCATP fuel bowser placed on display.
- T-33 Silverstar placed on display outside the museum.
- Lancaster cockpit canopy framework rebuilt.
- Society hosts the Canadian Aeronautical Preservation Association Conference.
- Halifax Display opened.
- Restored Blenheim IV cockpit section placed on display in memory of Sgt. Albert Prince.
- Working Lancaster undercarriage placed on display.
- Lancaster navigator/wireless operator table restored.
- 1200 square foot storage area opened.
- Lancaster cockpit perspex replaced.
- New library opened.
- Cessna Crane acquired.
- Restored Blenheim IV Bomber placed on display in memory of Barry Davidson.
- First NLS Fly-In held.
- Restored, operational Link trainer placed on display.
- Canadian Aviation Historical Society Conference visits the museum.
- Bruce Warren Memorial Garden dedicated.
- "Women at War" display opened.
- Front turret and Bomb Aimers perspex completed.
- Nanton Cenotaph relocated to front entrance of the museum.
- Display honouring the Dutch Resistance opened.
- 480 square foot expansion completed to enlarge the museum's front entrance.
- Four additional doors installed to enable the Lancaster to be rolled outside.
- Aircraft Nose Art Display opened.
- Dambusters Display upgraded.
- Museum Tarmac area paved.
- Bristol Turret restoration completed.
- Tallboy Bomb replica constructed and placed on display.
- Lancaster FM-159's starboard-inner engine was "run-up" after a two year restoration project.
- Canada's Bomber Command Memorial was placed on the front lawn of the museum and dedicated.
- Former Snowbird Tutor #114177 acquired.
- Museum members took our travelling display and our message to the EAA Airventure in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA.
- Tutor #177 was restored, painted in Snowbird markings, unveiled at the Rocky Mountain House Air Show, and then placed on display in the museum.
- The Nanton Lancaster Society celebrated its Twentieth Anniversary with a day-long celebration.
- Fleet Fawn restored to taxiable status
- Snowbirds Flypast
- 14,000 sq.ft. expansion to the north completed
- New BCATP Exhibit opened
- New Americans in the RCAF Exhibit opened
- "NOSE ART -The Clarence Simonsen Collection" published
- Giant (20'x40') RCAF flag flies over Nanton
- Utilities installed and interior finishing completed in 2007 expansion
- Joe English "multi-purpose room" opened
- 14,000 sq.ft. expansion to the north completed
- "Lancs in the Fifties" exhibit opened
- Lancaster FM-159's starboard-outer engine was "run-up" after a two year restoration project
- De Havilland Tiger Moth aircraft acquired
- The sixty-fifth anniversary of the Ian Bazalgette Victoria Cross flight was commemorated by the "Twinning" of the Village of Senantes in France with the Town of Nanton.
- Arrangements made with the Alberta Aviation Museum in Edmonton whereby their 2/3 replica Westland Lysander is placed on display.
- Museum acquires a one hundred foot tall flagpole which will fly the RCAF flag on special occasions.
- The museum's Tiger Moth that is being restored to flyable status was given the numbers 4080 to commemorate the aircraft flown by Murray Peden at #5 EFTS.
- Nanton Lancaster Society Air Museum name changed to Bomber Command Museum of Canada.
- Annual Fly-In name changed to Joe English Memorial Fly-In.
- Lancaster FM 159 flap and bomb bay door hydraulics made operable.
- Through the work of Halifax57 Rescue, a large container of Halifax/Hastings parts including undercarriage, two Bristol Hercules Engines, and major wing components were shipped from Malta to Canada to become the foundation of a Halifax display for the museum.
- A storage area, additional museum display space, and two new washrooms were constructed in the former restoration shop area.
- Through the work of Halifax57 Rescue, four Bristol Hercules engines and numerous engine parts and tool were located in a WW II bunker at Terrace, British Columbia and delivered to the museum.
- The De Havilland Tiger Moth's wings restoration was completed and the aircraft placed on static display awaiting its restoration to flyable status.
- The City of Calgary owned Mosquito arrived at the museum for restoration by the Calgary Mosquito Society.
- The museum donated aluminum from RCAF Halifax LW682 to become the ceiling of London's Bomber Command Museum.
- Two biographies, "Big Joe McCarthy -the RCAF's American Dambuster" and "Wings Over High River -Conversations with A. Gordon Jones," are published by the museum.
- A huge milestone was reached when the Lancasters port-outer Merlin engine became operational completing the goal of having all four engines operational.
- The first of the museum's Bristol Hercules 14 Cylinder Radial engines became operational.
- A portable, half-size version of Canada's Bomber Command Memorial Wall was created and displayed at a number of locations.
- The museums full-size replica Messerschmitt Bf 109 was placed on display.
- Nine museum members attended an event in Senantes, France to commemorate the Seventieth Anniversary of Ian Bazalgette's VC Flight.
- The museum's replica Tallboy Bomb was placed in the Lancaster's Bomb-bay as part of an event commemorating the Seventieth Anniversary of the sinking of the Battleship Tirpitz.
- A special purpose trailer was built and donated by Falcan Industries upon which the museum's operational Bristol Hercules engine was mounted. As well as running at museum events, the Hercules travelled to an air show.
- Off-site storage building completed.
- Lancaster rear fuselage floor restoration completed.
- The museum's Tiger Moth (#1214) takes to the air.
- 6 Group RCAF Display opened.
A full scale replica of the Upkeep bouncing bomb was constructed, installed on the Lancaster and “spun up” for the Dams Raid special event
An operational Cessna Crane aircraft was acquired by the museum.