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Report - RAF Wroughton, Wiltshire - June 2015

Discussion in 'Military Sites' started by Bertie Bollockbrains, Jun 4, 2015.

  1. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    RAF Wroughton is today the overspill storage and archives site for the London Science Museum. It is closed to the public but access is possible by application for genuine researchers. With heavy security and numerous treasures in storage, it's a no go zone for the likes of us and that's a shame as this must have been one big WW2 airfield in it's day with the control tower, C Type hangars, D Type hangars, L Type hangars and Robins hangars all still present.

    If anybody is thinking of requesting permission just to photograph the buildings, here's the typical response taken from the internet "Just got off the phone form a contact at RAF Wroughton/science museum, and we spoke about a visit to photograph the former WW2 buildings including the old control tower, hangars etc and the answer was NO WAY, they are doing building work to try and stablize the buildings and as such public access is out of the question".

    My own experience is that if you drive up to the gate and politely ask to go in to look at the buildings, it's a polite Foxtrot Oscar.

    This report is on a few airfield relics that can be seen outside the perimeter fence.

    HISTORY

    RAF Wroughton opened in April 1940. Also present on this site was RAF Hospital Wroughton. It was opened as the RAF General Hospital on 14 June 1941, and treated both military and civilian patients. It was renamed RAF Princess Alexandra Hospital on 4 October 1967. It was closed on 31 March 1996 and was demolished and now a housing estate.

    The Science Museum took ownership of the 545 acre airfield in 1979, to be used as a storage facility for the largest objects of the Science Museum. A collection of approximately 26000 objects is currently kept in six of the hangars, from the first hovercraft to MRI scanners, computers to (de-activated) nuclear missiles. The store is particularly notable for its extensive collection of vintage aircraft, road transport vehicles, agricultural machinery and industrial collections.

    In storage here is a Boeing 247 plane. That means nothing to me, but a person who works with me in the office and a bit of an plane spotter tells me it's extremely special and gives him wet dreams. He is fuming that it's not in an aircraft museum where it could actually be seen.

    In December 2013 planning permission was given for a large solar farm to be constructed on about 67 hectares of the airfield, where over 150000 solar panels would be installed. If it happens, it will be the UK's largest solar farm.

    THE EXPLORE

    Surrounded by three hexagonal type 22 pillboxes, this has to be Britain's most heavily defended underground reservoir. It lies in a field in the vicinity of the married quarters (now a housing estate) and resembles a neglected and overgrown Teletubby Land

    [​IMG]

    And in it's heyday...
    [​IMG]

    Anyways. back to the present
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It's difficult to determine any history for this reservoir, but an information panel on the wall informs me that Eric sucked cock here. An arrow showed me the exact spot. It was a privilege to had stood on the exact spot that this great event in British history occurred and I felt honoured. I have been unable to determine who Eric is or when this historical event may had happened. However, if Eric is reading or if anyone here was witness to this event then please let us all know.
    [​IMG]

    Probably about 15m long and 5m wide.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Next we look at the three type 22 pillboxes which are equally spaced around the reservoir. The type 22 pillbox is the regular shaped pillbox. If it was an irregular hexagon shape, then it's the type 24. It is estimated that some 28000 pillboxes and other hardened field fortifications were constructed in the United Kingdom during World War Two, of which about 6500 still survive. The type 22 is the second most common type of pillbox with about 1347 remaining.

    [​IMG]

    First pillbox:
    [​IMG]

    Second pillbox:
    [​IMG]

    Third pillbox:
    [​IMG]

    Inside I was greeted by the hospitality of the previous residents and made to feel very welcome.
    [​IMG]

    Finally, not too far away, was the remains of a small underground room with a heavy door support and the remains of electrical wiring. There are no remains of stairs and I guess access would have been by ladder.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Thanks for reading
     
    #1 Bertie Bollockbrains, Jun 4, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015

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  2. Cuuvin

    Cuuvin 28DL Colonial Member
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    Nice lii' mooch there :thumb

    yeah in regards to the Boeing 247 , aviation buffs know the significance of the type, this is for the the rest ...

    In wartime colors ...

    [​IMG]

    Boeing 247

    The Boeing Model 247 was an early United States airliner, considered the first such aircraft to fully incorporate advances such as all-metal semimonocoque construction, a fully cantilevered wing and retractable landing gear. Other advanced features included control surface trim tabs, an autopilot and de-icing boots for the wings and tailplane.
    of the type

    (yeah, bit of a geek here, but we all have our quirks ... :rolleyes: )
     
  3. Els

    Els Obsessed with BS7671
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    I love the graff, basic and to the point. What's that mummy looking thing in the last pic? Looks like a headless woman?
     
  4. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    Well I had to dispose of the wife somewhere. Moderators can you please delete Bertina's account. She wont be needing it anymore
     
  5. Wevsky

    Wevsky A Predisposed Tourist
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    Erics a very dirty boy isnt he¬!

    interesting report though mate with your info and worth having a look at
     
  6. Els

    Els Obsessed with BS7671
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    I like the way he looks so happy to be smokin' the bone on that pud.
     
  7. Bertrina Bollockbrains

    Bertrina Bollockbrains 28DL Full Member
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    Your so kind Bertie..
    Found this a very interesting explore round the area
     
  8. huey

    huey 28DL Regular User
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    Nice one Bertron, great stuff as usual you old nobber :thumb
     
  9. Miss Mayhem

    Miss Mayhem 28DL Regular User
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    Good stuff :thumb
     
  10. Mr Sam

    Mr Sam 28DL Regular User
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    would be awesome to have a mooch in the hangar!
     
  11. A man called Martyn

    A man called Martyn cultural theorist
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    Having being in two of the science museum hangers back in the day, its quite impressive what is hidden away in those hangers. Think the site was still RNAY Wroughton at the time.
     
  12. Ordnance

    Ordnance Moderator
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    Very few Boeing 247D's saw service with the RAF - Is it DZ203, an elderly American airliner which made the world's first automatic blind landing at RAF Defford in January 1945 – Known as the "Top Secret Boeing"
     
    hamtagger likes this.
  13. Cuuvin

    Cuuvin 28DL Colonial Member
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  14. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    Beginning to understand why the plane spotting colleague that I work with in the office is so fuming about lack of public access to this plane. He has just told me the UK's only Lockhead Constellation is hidden here too. He tells me that in his community, people would kill to see these treasures. Looking at the plane spotting forums I can see a lot of discussion and anger written. Take this quote for example:

    "I recently asked about a visit for my local bus club to the Science Museum’s Wroughton reserve collection. Some interesting vehicles buses, lorries, cars, motor bikes, aircraft & even a steam boat. I was quoted £360 (including VAT) for a weekday visit, (twenty people at £18 each) The museum stated they would have to take staff off other duties to show us around. This would be for only one hanger, there are I believe three. Quite frankly this is an outrageous charge when the Science Museum is government financed & we are already paying for this as tax payers.
    It begs the question. What purpose does Wroughton serve? none of the vehicles (to my knowledge) ever appear in public as they never have public open days."

    It's a good point, it's us the taxpayer financing this site and we not allowed to see.


    Finally, I found a full list of planes in storage at RAF Wroughton:

    Bede BD-5B G-BGLB Complete
    Bensen B.7 BAPC.174 Complete
    Boeing 247D N18E Complete
    Chargus Midas Super E BAPC.172 Complete
    De Havilland DH.84 Dragon G-ACIT Complete
    De Havilland DH.89A Dragon Rapide G-ALXT Complete
    De Havilland Devon C.2 VP975 Complete
    De Havilland Comet 4B G-APYD Complete
    De Havilland Comet 1A G-ANAV Nose
    Douglas DC-3A NC16071 Complete
    Folland Gnat T.1 XP505 Complete
    Handley Page HP.39 Gugnunc G-AACN Complete
    Hawker Siddeley Trident 3B-101 G-AWZM Complete
    Hiway Skytrike G-MBVT Complete
    Huntair Pathfinder II G-MMCB Complete
    LET Z.37 Cmelak G-AVZB Complete
    Lockheed L-749A Constellation N7777G Complete
    Mignet HM.14 Pou-de-Ciel G-AEHM Complete
    Piaggio P.166 G-APWY Complete
     
    hamtagger and Ordnance like this.
  15. Ordnance

    Ordnance Moderator
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    Thanks Bertie, On further research Boeing 247D c/n 1722 N18E stored at Wroughton is not the same aircraft as ex RAF Boeing 247D c/n 1726, which became successively NC13344, CF-BTA, RCAF 7655, DZ203, and DZ203/G which is reported withdrawn from service at end of 1946, and scrapped at 34MU, in August 1947
     
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