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Report - USAF/RAF - Grafton Underwood - Feb 2014

Discussion in 'Military Sites' started by Sabre, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. Sabre

    Sabre 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

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    This felt like a treasure hunt more than an explore, I had no idea of where anything was here so spent a good 3 1/2 hours just walking around the forest and surrounding areas. Found lot's air raid shelters (I believe they are called Stanton shelters?) probably 9 in total.
    On me todd this explore was!
    I have pictures of the pillboxes although they are on another device so haven't been uploaded, I also found the Op's room but it was too dark by that time so no pictures I'm afraid.

    Weather was pretty bleak, bloody good job I took wellies :thumb

    History

    RAF use

    The airfield was opened in 1941 and was first used by the RAF Bomber Command 1653 Heavy Conversion Unit with Liberators. The original runways were approximately 1,600 yards and 1,100 yards in length. However, these were unsuitable for the operation of heavy, four-engined bombers and the field was upgraded to Class A airfield standards, including the lengthening of the runways to the required 2,000 yards for the main and 1,400 yards for each of the others, started in late 1942.

    USAAF use

    Grafton Underwood was assigned United States Army Air Force Eighth Air Force in 1942. Its designation was USAAF Station 106.

    Subsequently used by 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy), 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy), 96th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 384th Bombardment Group (Heavy) during WW2.


    Postwar Air Ministry use

    After the war, Grafton Underwood was used for vehicle storage with No. 236 Maintenance Unit employing up to two hundred civilian drivers and mechanics. The unit at the airfield repaired and stored thousands of Air Ministry vehicles which were sold at monthly public auctions. The airfield was finally declared surplus to requirements and closed on 1 February 1959.

    Civil use

    With the end of military control, Grafton Underwood airfield was returned to agricultural use, however some old buildings remain, in varying condition. Most of the concreted area of the airfield has been removed, except for some single-track agricultural roads which were part of the perimeter track and runways. Several frying pan and at least one double-loop hardstand remains on the north side of the airfield on private farmland. Woods now cover much of the site and these are open to the public. A memorial was installed at the airfield site in the 1990s


    On with the pictures :)

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    Car bonnet!

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    One of the many air raid shelters

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    Exterior shot

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    Airsofter's!

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    Havent got a clue of what this would have been?

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    Toilet block!

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    This was so random, a safe in the middle of nowhere!

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    I can't work out whether this is part of the old site or an old farm?

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    The bog shot had to be done!!!

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    I understand their are alot of pictures, I just wanted to show you guy's the scale of the site.
    Cheers people :thumb
     

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