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Aviation Trail

About the Aviation Trail

Lincoln and the surrounding area has strong links to aviation from the past to the present. Visit and explore those links today with this trail.

During World War 2, Lincolnshire became known as 'Bomber County'. However, the region's rich heritage goes back to World War 1 when the City of Lincoln was at the centre of the UK’s fledgling aviation industry.

At its peak, the city was one of the largest aircraft production areas in the world producing more than 3,500 aircraft and 3,000 aero engines.

Today, the city is home to the Red Arrows aerobatic display team, based at RAF Scampton, and the UK's tallest war memorial at the International Bomber Command Centre.

This aviation trail provides a brief glimpse of the diverse aviation pedigree of the city and the surrounding area. The trail is not intended to be explored in order and is grouped in areas:

  • City Centre: 1-6
  • North of Lincoln: 7-10
  • South of Lincoln: 11-18

We hope you enjoy exploring this often hidden side of Lincoln.

The photograph of Lancaster PA474 flying over Lincoln Cathedral, during summer 2009, was taken during the production of the documentary Into the Wind. Find out more at

Cathedral Quarter
Lincoln Cathedral

One of Europe’s finest Gothic buildings, Lincoln Cathedral - open virtually with live-streamed online services, with home worship resources and virtual tours available.

Cultural Quarter, City of Lincoln
Lincolnshire Archives

Lincolnshire Archives offers a public search room where members of the public are welcome to consult original archives, microfilm resources and library material relating to the county of Lincolnshire and its connections in other parts of the UK and overseas.

Lincoln Suburbs
Former Clayton & Shuttleworth Works

Various works locations on the 100 acre Clayton & Shuttleworth site, east of Lincoln city centre, were used to manufacture aircraft during World War 1.

Lincoln Suburbs
Former Robey & Co. Works

The former site of Robey & Co. Globe Works, used during WW1 for aircraft manufacture, now Jackson's Building Centre.

City of Lincoln, Lincoln Suburbs
International Bomber Command Centre

A memorial spire, walls, peace gardens, and visitor centre that mark the service and sacrifice of World War II aircrew, ground crew and support staff who lost their lives whilst serving with Bomber Command. Temporarily closed.

City of Lincoln, Lincoln Suburbs
Lincoln West Common

Lincoln's West Common is a 100 hectare, green space with excellent views of Lincoln Cathedral. At the west limit of Lincoln, this grassy area is home to wildlife as well as a space for outdoor sports.

Lincoln Suburbs
RAF Dunholme Lodge Memorial

Just north-west of the A46 near the village of Welton is the former site of RAF Dunholme Lodge.

3-10 miles from Lincoln, Villages & Countryside
RAF Scampton

Explore the home of the RAF Red Arrows, visit the Scampton Airshow, and see the office of the Dambusters' Guy Gibson at RAF Scampton.

Lincoln Suburbs
South Carlton Memorial

The aerodrome at South Carlton was used for WWI pilot training between 1916 and 1920.

11-20 miles from Lincoln, Villages & Countryside
Hemswell Antique Centres

Europe's largest selection of dealers at a former RAF base, offering the widest possible range of antique furniture and vintage collectables.

Lincoln Suburbs
RAF Skellingthorpe Memorials

Close to the A46 bypass is the Birchwood estate, which occupies most of the former site of RAF Skellingthorpe.

Lincoln Suburbs
Former Ruston, Proctor & Co. Works

Former site of the country's largest producer of aircraft engines during WW1.

Lincoln Suburbs
Former Bracebridge Heath Works

Former site of Robey & Co's private airfield during WW1 and A. V. Roe's aircraft repair factory in WW2.

3-10 miles from Lincoln, Villages & Countryside
RAF Waddington

Located four miles south of Lincoln, RAF Waddington is a busy operational airfield and home to a fascinating Heritage Centre.

Lincoln Suburbs
RAF Swinderby Memorial

The former site of RAF Swinderby is now occupied by the village of Witham St Hughs.

Lincoln Suburbs
Scopwick Cemetery

Scopwick Cemetery, 6 miles south of Lincoln, near Digby aerodrome is the final resting place of ‘The Pilot Poet’, John Gillespie Magee, who was killed in a mid-air collision over Lincolnshire on 11th December 1941.

11-20 miles from Lincoln, Villages & Countryside
RAF Digby Lima Sector Operations Room

Learn about RAF Digby's role in during WWII in the faithfully restored Ops Room is as it was in October 1939 prior to the Battle of Britain.

11-20 miles from Lincoln, Villages & Countryside
Cranwell Aviation Heritage Museum

Discover the fascinating story of the historic Royal Air Force College Cranwell and become a pilot on the Jet Provost flight simulator.

All Trail Spots

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