The Wind Tunnels are available year round for private hire, and offer a unique location for all types of events. Artliner provides an expert venue team and event management services when hiring the wind tunnels.
The wind tunnels have been an
exceptional blank canvas space for:
- Airline of the Year Award
- Farnborough College of Technology
- Farnborough Symphony Orchestra
- London Contemporary Orchestra
- Luna Cinemas
- Royal College of Art
The Wind Tunnel Project
The Wind Tunnel Project brings together new commissions and performances by UK and international artists at a unique location hidden from public view for over 40 years. A programme of events and talks runs throughout the exhibition.
Opened to the public for the first time in history in June and July 2014, The Wind Tunnel Project brought together new commissions and performances by British artists, all in an extraordinary location.
With over 4,000 visitors to the exhibition, and over 800 school children from 34 local schools having taken part in the bespoke education programme, the project was an outstanding success.
Wind Tunnels History
The Wind Tunnel Project takes place in three of the five Farnborough wind tunnels, established in the early 1900’s by the RAE, who were instrumental in wind tunnel research throughout the 20th century. The wind tunnel project celebrates the history and legacy of these wind tunnels and their central role in the development of aviation.
All that remains of the former royal aircraft establishment (RAE) at Farnborough – famous worldwide for its excellence in aviation research – is an extraordinary collection of large, enigmatic buildings which give little outward clue to their original function.
The group of surviving buildings is at the center of what has been known since World War One as the factory site where, after 1912, the construction of airships was rapidly eclipsed by experimentation in powered flight and the production of early aircraft to meet the urgencies of war.
One building dominates the group: the grey bulk of the 24 foot wind tunnel. It is a landmark of Farnborough with a turret clock (still going) facing the north gate, where many of the 5000 strong workforce would have entered the factory site on foot or bicycle in the establishment’s heyday.
The outbreak of war placed increased demand on the rapidly developing aircraft industry and its ability to manufacture large numbers of aircraft, and by late 1914 the factory entered a new phase of development and expansion. The factory’s aircraft designs were produced in their hundreds, the most outstanding being the SE5A fighter, which was widely regarded as the best fighter of the period.
At the end of the war in 1918 the factory, renamed the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), entered a new phase as the centre for government aviation research and development. It prospered and expanded for the next 75 years, through World War II and then the Cold War, finally becoming the Defence Research Agency in 1991 and the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency in 1995.
35 minutes by train from London Waterloo.