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The Hovercraft Museum

The Hovercraft Museum
  • Description
  • Images
  • Dates & Prices
  • Getting Here

Here at the Hovercraft Museum, we have lots of things to do and see. The Hovercraft Museum is a moving museum and is constantly working to restore and maintain the craft in our care. Our engineering hangar is open to visitors to see the craft being worked on and many of our craft such as the Princess Anne, BH7, SRN5, and SRN6s can be boarded and experienced first hand! Here are some of the highlights:

Directions

From the Isle of Wight by Hovercraft, HoverBus & Ferry !

Take the Hovercraft from Ryde to Southsea, then hop on the HoverBus to the Portsmouth Harbour stop. A 2 minute walk will take you to the Gosport Ferry for a lovely crossing over the busy Portsmouth Harbour. After a 5min crossing at Gosport head to the Bus Station directly by Ferry and take the X5 to the Museum.

Isle of Wight Special Excursions by Hovercraft to the Museum

Travel on a specially arranged hovercraft from Ryde directly to the Daedalus slipway, opposite the Hovercraft Museum. These hovercraft operate throughout the year on selected dates.

Book in advance to avoid disappointment.    

 

SR.N4 – “The Princess Anne”

The SR.N4 (Saunders-Roe Nautical 4), or Mountbatten class hovercraft, served for over 30 years as a fast cross-channel ferry.  After the mk3 upgrades to the craft, it was able to carry over 60 cars, and 400+ passengers.  To this day the SR.N4 craft holds the record for the fastest car-carrying commercial channel crossing at an impressive time of 22 minutes.

 

BH7

The BH7, or Wellington class hovercraft, was designed for military applications.  It first flew in 1969 and was used in many trials with the Royal Navy.  During the 13 years of tests, it was evaluated for many different roles including, anti-submarine warfare and mine countermeasures.  Most notably, one winter, our BH7 successfully completed a round trip to The Arctic Circle leaving from Lee-on-the-Solent when it served with the Royal Navy.

 

James Bond

The James Bond film “Die Another Day” featured three hovercraft, two Osprey 5s and a Slingsby SAH 2200.  One of each craft used in the film can be found on display here at the museum, alongside a multimedia presentation about the filming of the hovercraft chase.

 

Scraheap Challenge

In the TV program, “Scrapheap Challenge” contestants compete in teams to build a working machine head-to-head in a race or task. The rules state that the machine can only be worked on for one day.  In series ten, episode three, the “Bright Sparks” and “Grunts” competed to build a working hovercraft to compete in a race. The two hovercraft built in this episode can be found at the Hovercraft Museum.

 

Salvage Squad Skima 12

The Salvage Squad TV program, in which machinery, vehicles, and other similar artifacts are restored against a tight deadline. In series three episode 7, first aired in 2004, the program worked to restore a Skima 12 hovercraft, which can be seen at the museum.

 

SR.N5

The SR.N5 (Saunders-Roe Nautical 5), or Warden class hovercraft, was the first production-built hovercraft in the world.  Of the fourteen built, seven were built under licence by Bell Aerosystems as the Bell SK-5.  Four of the N5s served with the “Interservice Hovercraft Trials Unit” at RNAS Lee-on-Solent (HMS Daedalus), seeing action in multiple theatres including Belgium, Libya, Thailand, and Malaysia.  Two craft were eventually converted to SR.N6s.  Our example went through a complete restoration and has even won an engineering award for the brilliant effort of all the volunteers involved.

 

SR.N6

The SR.N6 (Saunders-Roe Nautical 6), or Winchester Class hovercraft, was a stretched version of the SR.N5.  It was the first production hovercraft to be used in commercial service.  It is powered by one Rolls-Royce Gnome engine used for both lift and propulsion.  At The Hovercraft Museum, you are able to see three different examples of the SR.N6 craft including the original prototype (009) operated by Hovertravel in the Solent, a military landing craft variant and a stretched “Twin Prop” variant that is the oldest operational hovercraft in the world.

 

Royal Marines LCAC “C22”

The LCAC (Landing Craft Air Cushion) vehicle, technically speaking a Griffon 2000TDX(M), is a craft that served as a landing craft for the Royal Navy and Royal Marines for ship-to-shore operations.  One of the four craft that served with the Marines, “C22”, is here with us at the museum.

 

Hover Hawks

The Hover Hawk was the first light production hovercraft in the world. We have three great examples: the original prototype, a mk2 and a mk3. Plus a fourth is undergoing extensive restoration in our engineering hangar.

 

Racing Craft

Look into the exciting world of hovercraft racing by sampling some of our ex-racing-craft. Some of our volunteers are actively involved in racing, so it’s worth asking if you are interested in getting involved in this adrenaline pumping sport!

 

Amenities
  • Bus Route
  • Café Onsite
  • Child Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Rainy Day
Ferries to the Isle of Wight
Dates
Season Running Dates Opening Times
19th January - 31st October 2019 10:00 - 16:00
Prices
Hovertravel Combo Pricing  
Adult £8 Adult / £7 Concession
Child £5 Child / 4 & Under Go Free

 

The Hovercraft Museum Map
Address

The Hovercraft Museum
Daedalus Site Seafront Gate
Marine Parade West
Lee-on-the-Solent
PO13 9NS

View Map
Directions

By Car

The museum is 5.5 miles from the M27 Junction 11. For satnav users, please use PO13 9NS which will take you to Marine Parade West on the seafront. There is free parking on seafront and slipway.

 

Public Transport

The museum can be reached by the Solent Ranger X5 bus route that runs between Gosport and Southampton via the Richmond Road bus stop (2 minutes walk to the museum). The X5 transits via Fareham which has good links to national rail services.

 

By Foot

It takes a 10 to 20 minutes to walk from the Lee-on-Solent High Street to the museum.

 

From the Isle of Wight by Hovercraft, HoverBus & Ferry !

Take the Hovercraft from Ryde to Southsea, then hop on the HoverBus to the Portsmouth Harbour stop. A 2 minute walk will take you to the Gosport Ferry for a lovely crossing over the busy Portsmouth Harbour. After a 5min crossing at Gosport head to the Bus Station directly by Ferry and take the X5 to the Museum.

 

Isle of Wight Special Excursions by Hovercraft to the Museum

Travel on a specially arranged hovercraft from Ryde directly to the Daedalus slipway, opposite the Hovercraft Museum. These hovercraft operate throughout the year on selected dates. Book in advance to avoid disappointment.