Anyone who has visited the museum this summer will know that our team of guides and stewards are amongst the very first people you will see as you arrive at our gates. The Museum’s team of volunteers come from all walks of life and, very often, they are not actually from a military or even aviation background.
However, we caught up with one of the volunteer stewards that joined us this year to learn more about what he loves so much about being with us each week. He’s called Jeff McGrew and when you visit the museum he is easy to find. Instead of a Yorkshire accent, you will here an American voice talking to you as you arrive.
Here’s why Jeff enjoys volunteering at the Yorkshire Air Museum.
It doesn’t get any better than this. Every Wednesday I have the privilege to work as a Steward at the Yorkshire Air Museum, and from where I work a replica Hawker Hurricane sits just outside the window.
Since February 2019, I have had the pleasure of working with the great people here at the historic RAF Elvington former home of 77 Squadron (Heavy bombers – Halifax) and the home of the only two French Heavy Bomber squadrons during World War II.
As an American, it is like a dream come true. I’ve always been interested in aviation, my father was a US Air Force C-47 Gooney Bird (Dakota) pilot. And that further heightened my interest in aviation as well as in aviation history. I followed in my father’s footsteps and joined the USAF ( for 12 1/2 years), some of which was spent at RAF Molesworth in Huntingdonshire in 1990s.
I retired from working for the US government in 2017 after 35 years (including active duty). After retirement I learned that we’d be returning to the UK, which we did about a year ago. Once we were settled in I went in search of something to do and this past February, visited the YAM, and decided that this was the place for me. With my interest in aviation and military history I figured that there could not be a better place to work and so I volunteered. Besides, there’s a Hurricane outside the window where I work. I am literally in heaven.
Our team of volunteers is constantly expanding and if you enjoyed hearing Jeff’s comments and feel inspired to learn more, you might like to check this page that shows all of the roles and skills we are currently looking for as the Museum expands and prepares for a winter season and an even busier summer of 2020