Report - - DLO Caversfield (former RAF Bicester), December 2011 | Military Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - DLO Caversfield (former RAF Bicester), December 2011


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NOTE: This is an ex-military site that was only closed and sold off to a development company in mid-2010. Will a mod please decide whether this goes to non-public or not as I can't decide.

This site lacks a decent written history but to quote someone who went on a tour in 2003: DLO Caversfield is responsible for the clothing of the British armed forces; this includes shooting at armoured jackets, testing tents and destruct testing socks and gloves with artificial sweating hands and feet.

As for the current status:

MINISTRY of Defence land near Bicester has been sold to a property development firm.

City and Country Group has bought the 23 acre site, off Skimmingdish Lane, Caversfield, for an undisclosed sum.

The site includes 22 buildings, including 17 Grade II listed buildings, a parade ground, offices, laboratories and a restaurant.

The site was part of RAF Bicester, but was recently home to the Defence Supply Chain, part of the MoD’s Defence Storage and Distribution Agency.

The land is currently vacant, with the exception of one building which has been retained by the MoD for use by Bicester Air Cadets.

City and Country Group’s managing director Helen Moore said: “The site has real historic value and played a very important part in our history.

“We look forward to working with the local community, heritage groups and Cherwell District Council in preparing a planning application which will provide a long term future for these buildings.â€￾

The firm said it was too early to reveal any plans for the site, but said most of its work has been developing sites into residential areas.

I had high hopes for this place having originally planned to see it back in August but I was never sure whether it'd be explorable as such or not (this is now more or less a building site, and indeed many of the buildings were secure). But hey Mookie and I went to have a look, and whilst we were somewhat disappointed that the buildings had been completely stripped back there were some features which we weren't disappointed with. It was also nice to see some virgin-urbex territory, somewhere completely fresh, and with some interesting history; originally this was the domestic site for RAF Bicester up until around the late 80s/early 90s when this and the technical site were converted to a hospital site* which would provide further beds for the casualties from USAF Upper Heyford which never materialized. When the Americans left in 1994 this became DLO Caversfield.
*For those looking for features remaining, sadly nothing remains here or on the technical site beyond signage.

As mentioned in my RAF Bicester thread, this was used as the prototype for RAF Upper Heyford so it's interesting to see that some if not all of the buildings here are identical, modifications aside.

Without further ado, here are the pictures:

Former decontamination bunker (there were 2)
Unfortunately I didn't get an external of this building, but if you look at this photograph from 2003, you can see the similarity between this and Heyford's 620th Security Police SQ Bunker.



Internals from the Caversfield bunker (see Heyford part 7 for comparison on Flickr)



Original map

If you look at these buildings (not explored as they were stripped back completely), they are near-identical to some of the buildings at Heyford.

This one in particular was also stripped, and like Heyford (Lamplighter Inn/Chow Hall) was a restaurant up until closure.



Although like the rest of the buildings they were indeed stripped, we hadn't travelled far to see this so we were really pleased to see the fume cupboards to be untouched.










On a final note, I have to say I was disappointed not to have seen any artwork which seems to be prevalent at both the technical site and across Upper Heyford but it was still worth a look nonetheless. Will I return? Possibly but don't count on it.

Thanks for reading,



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