In the spring of the new Millennium the freehold of the hangar site was signed by two members of the original committee. The hangar complex and buildings were handed over to the newly formed Hooton Park Trust, an non profit making company which was set up, with £300 donated by the Griffin Trust.
As the newly formed Hooton Park Trust was not a charity they had to generate
funds to pay for the everyday running of the complex. The only alternative was to employ a full time site manager and overnight the complex became a storage facility for caravans.
The Griffin Trust operations had to be scaled down as we were asked to vacate Hangar 2. At this point it was either accept the derelict Motor Transport Sheds offered as our new base, which also included the rear of Hangar 1 as a workshop or disband the charity. As the enthusiasm for the Hangar site and what it stood was still very evident within the members of The Griffin Trust the decision was made to carry on. The huge downsizing operation began.
The cafe closed. The collection had to be reduced. The Big Ugly DUKW went to a museum in Rotherham, the big Russian Antonov, Bi plane was returned to its owners (which we believe it is now flying under the Utterly Buttery colours). The Hurricane replica and associated aviation artefacts were disposed of.
The Hooton Park history display which we had built up in Hut 27 was donated to The Hooton Park Trust and the rest of the paperwork is held in the Cheshire Archive for public access.
Sadly, because we could not house aircraft in the MT sheds the Aviation section eventually disbanded. Not daunted by the enormous project ahead we set to clearing the areas which had been used by Vauxhall Motors as a bi-products dump”. A small grant was obtained for roofing materials.