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USS Enterprise

December 22, 2014 in Uncategorized

Five miles from my house is Snetterton Park. It’s now better known for its raceway, where many Formula One drivers trained in their early careers. Originally, it was Snetteron Heath, a B-17 base in WW2, home of the 96th Bomb Group. There’s also a large hobby complex nearby.

A few weeks ago George Williams posted a few photos of a large-scale concrete aircraft carrier he came across while travelling in China. I remembered that Snetterton had in one of its large halls a replica of the USS Enterprise, and I thought I’d post a few images (I don’t know the scale, but it’s big!). There’s also a photo display area adjacent detailing the history of the 96th.

12 additional images. Click to enlarge

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20 responses to USS Enterprise

  1. That’s really cool Rob. I’ve gone to numerous museums and seen models. I like to look at the models and see how good of a job the builder did.

    • The cased models I think are carved from hardwood in the Far East, and I assume the carrier is constructed along the same lines as a show piece, but nobody at the Park seems to know anything about it.

      • If I had to guess (and actually, I DO), I’d say those aircraft on the flight deck are all 1/48th scale. But there sure had to be a lot of scratch building for most everything else displayed in/around/on the ship. WOW.

        • Not sure. They look 1/48-ish, but if they were made to the ship’s scale they may be some oddball scale to fit the unique ship set up.

          • I have my doubts as to the availability of such a myriad of aircraft types – all being in an “oddball” scale. You may be right, though – it’s difficult to tell from the pictures.

  2. Thanks Rob. Wonder if a single individual built this or a team effort. Surprised they don’t have the build info on a poster with the model.

    • Yes remarkable it isn’t better promoted. I’ve lived in the area four years and have been to Snetterton any number of times, but this is the first time I’ve ever photographed this. I can only think it was done perhaps as a corporate display but then found its way here. It looks like the sort of thing a company does to promote its products.

      All the display aircraft are mahogany and there are a couple of photos of (Thai?) workers carving/painting the models. I think it’s probably a joint effort on a model of this size.

  3. Rob
    It’s been my experience that a “builders model” usually has a corporate plaque that reads “Model courtesy of Acme Heavy Industries donated to the People of Everytown”. Then it lists the general contractor or shop the model was built in the scale and general facts about the actual ship. A very impressive model both in size and attention to detail.
    By the way, my Dad spent six months in England with his fighter group prior to the invasion of North Africa.
    Thanks for the post.

    • Hi Mike,

      I had a look but didn’t see any plaque apart from the ship’s name.

      • PS My Dad also was in North Africa, Master Sergeant in Signals, later in the invasions of Sicily and Italy. Have two photos of him standing with GIs and camels in NA, and then outside Rome sitting on a Jeep wearing shades and holding a bottle of Chianti….

  4. .

    Impressive display ! Thank you Rob.

    I Googled « Snetterton Park », and I understood that this hobby complex is in Snetterton, Norwich, Norfolk, UK.

    Next time I will be in the UK, I’ll surely have a look at it …



    • Hi Victor,

      The park is in fact about 20 km south of Norwich, as I mentioned about five from me. It’s nothing spectacular to look at from the outside, just some odd things around the place, including a mockup of a Russian tank used in an early Bond film, oh and also a full size Stegasaurus!

  5. Thanks for posting this Rob, hope I’m able to visit there one day.

  6. I’ll never forget that day in 1968 that Enterprise entered San Francisco Bay. I was crossing on the Bay Bridge, which came to a complete halt as people watched. Fortunately I was able to get into the right (western side) lane and sit there watching. When she passed under the bridge, that was quite exciting because it was a really close fit.

  7. Wow thats GREAT ! Thanks for sharing Rob. This is a very impressive place, it seems my long proposed visit of the UK becomes a must.
    If i my sources are right, the real CVN-65 is getting scrapped.

  8. Thanks for sharing Rob. One of the places to visit when it’s time to make that world tour I will hope to take before too long.

    • No problem, Chuck. Glad you found it of interest. I would say however that if Snetterton Park in rural Norfolk is on the world tour itinerary I’d seriously consider changing travel agents!

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