THE Director General of the Royal Air Force Museum in Grahame Park has announced he will retire later this year.

Dr Michael Fopp will formally stand down from his position in June after more than 22 years at the museum, in Grahame Park Way.

A former member of the elite Mounted Branch of the Metropolitan Police Service for more than ten years, he joined the museum staff as keeper of the Battle of Britain Museum soon after he was injured by rioters which ended his career in the force in 1979.

After collecting a masters degree from London City University, he rejoined the RAF museum as director in 1988 after a brief stint as director of the London Transport Museum.

Dr Fopp will be retained by the museum to assist a fund raising campaign for a project that will “commemorate and celebrate” the legacy of the Battle of Britain.

“I have worked for the RAF Museum for more than half my life and I am delighted that, even in retirement, I will still have a role to play in its success and development”, said Dr Fopp, who will hand over his post at the end of the month.

Air Chief Marshal Sir John Day paid tribute to the work of Dr Fopp, saying: “He has led the Museum for many years with a commitment and energy which is unsurpassed.

“The Trustees and the Royal Air Force owe him a great debt of gratitude for making the RAF Museum the success it has become.”

Peter Dye, currently Deputy Director General, will be appointed Acting Director General from February 1.

The RAF museum confirmed the process of appointing a permanent successor to Dr Fopp will start immediately.