453rd Bomb Group, Old Buckenham

Hollywood star James ‘Jimmy’ Stewart was the first operations officer here, and is remembered with great affection in Norfolk. The museum is a recent addition, located on the still active airfield at Old Buckenham. It tells the story of the 453rd, which flew B-24 Liberators here from 1943-45. Outside you can see other military artefacts from both the Second World War and the Cold War. The Jimmy Stewart cafe serves hot and cold food through the day. Old Buck is deep in the Norfolk countryside, near the town of Attleborough. Curator James Clarey is currently working on new exhibits.
453rd BG Old Buckenham


The 453rd Bombardment Group arrived in Britain in December, 1943. The new station had been built in 1942 to accommodate heavy bombers.

Old Buck’s Liberators flew a total of 259 missions, and dropped 15,804 tons of bombs before the end of the war in Europe. They lost 58 aircraft – and 366 lives were lost. The 366 are recalled on a modern War Memorial at Old Buckenham.




The museum was funded by Old Buckenham Airfield’s owner. It is housed in a purpose-built Nissen Hut. Many of the exhibits come from the collection of Patrick ‘Pat’ Ramm. He was an 11-year-old boy when the USAAF arrived, and was ‘adopted’ by some of the ground crew there, in particular New Yorker John Tangorra.

John was an instrument mechanic and Pat and his pals used to hang out at ‘John Tangorra’s Shack’. He got back in touch with many of the veterans in the late 1970s when he became the base contact for the 453rd. From them came the seeds of the current collection – uniforms, medals and photographs.

Museum at Old Buckenham
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things to do nearby


The Pat Ramm Building
Old Buckenham Airfield
Abbey Road, Old Buckenham
Norfolk, NR17 1PU

The museum is open 10am-4pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the season, which ends in mid-September. Tel: 01953 860806