Express & Star

Summer of Spies event set to begin at RAF Cosford

While the school term draws to a close for summer…..the ‘Summer of Spies’ is just about to begin at the Royal Air Force Museum Cosford.

Summer of Spies

Every day throughout August youngsters can take part in a Secret Spy Trail around the museum’s National Cold War Exhibition and on Wednesdays can sign up for Summer of Spies workshops, suitable for young secret agents in the making.

During Summer of Spies workshops, participants will enter into the world of spies and espionage and take part in group activities themed around cyber-attacks, spy bots and code challenges.

A spokesman for the venue said: “To take part you don’t have to be a qualified spy, as all secret agents training will be given on the day by undercover professionals from Tablet Academy.

“There will be two sessions running each day, morning workshops are aimed at those who are just discovering espionage for the first time, whilst afternoon sessions are geared towards youngsters who are more familiar with coding (including those who completed the morning session), so they can build on their skills.”

Workshop 1: Discover Minecraft and Enter a World of Virtual Spies (August 2)

Calling all Minecraft fans…..explore, play and discover the exciting world of Minecraft! Once the basics have been mastered, youngsters will go on to learn how to build and program virtual working machines in Minecraft using a range of advanced blocks including Redstone – then put their new-found knowledge to the test to solve spy themed challenges and competitions. (Suitable for children aged 8-14)

Workshop 2: iSpy – Discover a world of Espionage and Cyber Security (August 9)

Working in groups, participants will work against the clock to stop a simulated cyber-attack in order to intercept and decipher secret messages, analyse evidence and decrypt files to identify the individual behind the attack. (Suitable for children aged 10-14)

Workshop 3: Creating Spy bots for Mi5 Robotics Department (August 16)

Participants will work with LEGO Mindstorms to build and program their own Spy bots to solve a variety of problems and help James Bond keep Britain safe. Working in teams, participants will explore the Mi5 Experimental Robotics Department programming a range of robotics to complete challenges including an intruder detection system and a communications interceptor device. (Suitable for children aged 8-14)

Workshop 4: Coding 101 – An introduction to coding for Secret Agents (August 23)

An absolute must for any secret agent…..learn how to create code for virtual environments as well as physical items. Once everyone has understood the basics they will move on to code challenges where groups will race against the clock to crack the code like a top secret agent. During the second workshop, spies will use a range of coding languages to complete Mi5 training missions before earning their badge in the field to solve live scenarios. (Suitable for children aged 8-14).

Numbers at each of the sessions are limited, so to avoid disappointment, book your place in advance via the museum’s website – £20 per half day or £30 for a full day.

All materials will be provided. A self-guided spy experience will be running alongside the workshops, where families can opt for the Secret Spy Trail and search the hangar to find all the answers hidden amongst the aircraft and exhibits on display. After jotting down the answers on their trail sheet, they must then decipher the code to reveal the name of the secret spy. Correct trail entries will be entered into a draw and five lucky winners will win a £20 gift voucher to spend in the RAF Museum Shop. Participation in the Secret Spy Trail is free of charge and trails can be collected from the Visitor Centre on arrival.

Trails are suitable for children aged eight and above, younger children may require assistance to complete the trail. Plus, there’s plenty more to the keep families entertained during a visit to the RAF Museum Cosford this summer – learn if you have what it takes to be a pilot in Fun ‘n’ Flight which is packed with hands on excitement.

Whether you’re learning how to fly a Spitfire, investigating air flow with ‘The Blower’ or guiding a Hercules to a drop zone you will be learning and having fun. Or, why not let your imagination take flight on board the Museum’s 4D Experience which combines cutting-edge 3D computer animation with the added fourth dimension of special environmental effects. Experience the thrill of flying in formation with the world famous aerobatic display team the Red Arrows in the new 4D ride.

All this is in addition to exploring a world class collection of over 75 historic aircraft including the world’s oldest Spitfire, the unique TSR2 and the mighty Vulcan bomber to name but a few. Plus, visitors can now see the Museum’s latest acquisitions; a collection of Second World War aircraft including the Wolverhampton built Boulton Paul Defiant, the Bf109, Tiger Moth, Gladiator and Ju88. Aviation fans will also have the opportunity to step on-board the Nimrod this summer, with tours running on selected dates throughout July and August. Tickets for the 15 minute tours are now available to purchase online via the Museum website, book now to guarantee your place as tickets on the day are subject to availability.The museum is open daily from 10am – 5pm and entry is free. For more details visit: