Scottish Aviation Heritage Trail

(Scroll down for the Trails)

The RAF's Centenary in 2018 provided an opportunity to commemorate Scotland’s extraordinary part in aviation history.

Throughout the century people and places in Scotland have made a huge contribution, not only to the Royal Air Force, but to Naval, Army and Civil aviation in Scotland. That contribution has helped to shape aviation today, and will, no doubt, continue to help in shaping aviation in the future.

The people of Scotland have contributed to aviation in every possible way. Scots were among the earliest senior officers of the RAF and played significant roles in the history of the service – Lt Gen Sir David Henderson, and Lord Dowding and many others have held some of the most senior appointments in the service. Many more Scots have served at every level in the RAF, both in the air, on the ground – in quite a few cases under the ground – and at sea.

Aircraft manufacturing, maintenance and support have long been features of Scottish aviation and today there is a well-developed civil air industry operating from a significant number of airports and airfields in Scotland.

Scientific innovation has also been significant – a Scot, Robert Watson Watt, was responsible for the invention of radar – to name just one.

The RAF 100 Aviation Heritage Trail sets out, in partnership with colleagues across the various regional air museums, National Museums of Scotland and a variety of third parties, including VisitScotland, wider Scottish Government and industry, to promote sites of special interest using a mixture of web-based and printed media. The benefits to all, hopefully, would be increased levels of public awareness and thus, hopefully, increased ‘footfall’ at the various sites, as well as the chance to forge stronger linkages with Scottish Education alongside their promotion of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) in Scotland to point to aviation and engineering as possible careers for our youngsters.

The website gives access to all the Trail and links to many other sites that have huge amounts of material and information available. The website concentrates on the more significant places, people and events in Scottish aviation. When work on the project started it became clear that any attempt to try and put information on one site for every place in Scotland would be an impossibility. There are just so many places with connections!

The Trail has also been divided in to regions and printed material is available for each of these regions.

What does Scotland have?


  • Existing airfields - military and civil
  • Disused airfields - military and civil
  • Museums past and present - not only aviation museums but museums with significant aviation displays
  • Old RAF and FAA sites – radar stations, HQs, town houses, etc.
  • Training bases
  • Factories and industrial sites
  • Crash sites
  • Marine craft bases
  • ROC HQs and posts
  • Cadet centres
  • Memorials

People sites

  • Birthplaces
  • Homes
  • Graves