contact us

Use the form on the right to contact us.

You can edit the text in this area, and change where the contact form on the right submits to, by entering edit mode using the modes on the bottom right.

Hayes Way
Patchway, BS34

Aerospace Bristol is a new industrial heritage museum and learning centre being developed at Filton, to the north of Bristol. It will tell the story of the region's world-class aerospace industry - past, present and future. The Aerospace Bristol project is being run by the Bristol Aero Collection Trust.

Aerospace Bristol News

It’s coming home! World’s only flying Bristol Sycamore helicopter returns to Bristol

Martha Lewington

It’s not just football that’s coming home! The world’s only flying Bristol Sycamore helicopter is coming home to Bristol this week

Visitors to Aerospace Bristol can see the Sycamore up close from Tuesday 10th July until Thursday 12th July, including watching the unique helicopter take off at 1pm on Thursday 12th July as it leaves for the Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford. 


A total of 180 Bristol Sycamores were built at Filton and Weston-super-Mare, but the particular example visiting Aerospace Bristol this week is the only one in the world that is currently capable of flying. Built in 1957, this particular Sycamore served with the German Armed Forces before being decommissioned in 1969. It is now operated by the Flying Bulls ( 

The Bristol Sycamore was developed by the Bristol Aeroplane Company at the end of the Second World War and named in reference to the seeds of a Sycamore tree, which fall with a rotating motion. It was the first British helicopter to receive a certificate of airworthiness and to serve with the Royal Air Force.

Featuring rotor blades constructed entirely from wood, the prototype Mk 1 lifted off for its maiden flight in 1947 and the Mk 2 followed in 1949. With a top speed of 200 km/h and a range of around 430 km, the Bristol 171 was ahead of its time and used for sea and mountain rescue, passenger and freight transport, and surveillance flights. 

Bristol Sycamore technical specification:
Manufacturer: Bristol Aeroplane Company
Serial number: 13475
Callsign: OE-XSY
Year of construction:: 1957
Length (including main rotor): 14,10 m
Height: 3,7 m
Maximum take-off weight: 2540 kg
Maximum speed: 212 km/h
Cruising speed: 130 km/h
Maximum flight time: 3 Stunden
Tank volume: 89 Imp Gal. /403 l
Engine: Alvis Leonides Mk 173
Power: 525 PS