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Report - - R.A.F. WIGSLEY, Tower-17/06/2007 | Military Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - R.A.F. WIGSLEY, Tower-17/06/2007



C

Channel 74

Guest
Guest
#1
I visited the tower this evening, access to the tower is easy with no security whatsoever !
The tower seems structurally sound though there are some large holes in a couple of places which were probably made when the tower was stripped bare .

There is sign of the building being on fire recently, a notice outside tells of an arson attack . Though inside there is nothing of the building that would burn. outside the doorway there is the remains of a lorry tyre which may have been burned inside. Damage seems to have been confined to the first room only (heat and smoke)

The building has 3 levels with several rooms on each floor. The stairs and floors are concrete and solid . The top floor has fine views in all directions across the former airfield, which is hardly recognizable as such with only small patches of the original concrete runways visible .

The building has a rather sad air about it.

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You can imagine the feeling of waiting and watching for that last Hampden back from the opp ! Never to return !!!

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This room had the fire .

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The arson notice.

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I apologize if this subject has been covered else where.

Please bare with me this is my first report :)
 
C

Channel 74

Guest
Guest
#2
Re: R.A.F. WIGSLEY, Tower -Report-17/06/2007

Nice report, the B&W photos are certainly very fitting for this place. Seeing them in colour would spoil it I think.

Reminded me of Findo Gask tower which I have been meaning to visit for a while.
I took them in B&W , the light was fading fast and an atmosphere was thick in the air, the tower cried out for B&W :)

This dead bird was on the upper floor
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It seemed rather fitting with the atmosphere .

The graffiti was everywhere
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I don't know if its me being tainted by this wonderful world we live in, but I kind of expected it to be like that :crazy

As I drove off I noticed a couple of smaller buildings over grown on the other
side of the road (sorry no pics) they will be worth an explore I'm sure :D
They were about 300yards right of this picture
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Note at the edge of the road the concrete taxiway

I also noticed some buildings possibly barrack blocks close to the village, these were in an abandoned state, falling into rapid decay.
but being rather close to civilization would be more difficult to look at:(
 
C

Channel 74

Guest
Guest
#3
Re: R.A.F. WIGSLEY, Tower -Report-17/06/2007

Info taken from http://www.raf.mod.uk/bombercommand/s83.html

WIGSLEY

A wartime airfield to Class A standard 7.5 miles from the centre of Lincoln and directly south-west of the village of the same name, Wigsley was built in 1941-42, the main contractor being Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons Ltd. Three concrete runways were 09-27, 0321 and 14-32 which were increased in length in the later stages of construction, 09-27 and 14-32 being extended across the Wigsley Besthorpe road which was closed. The new lengths were 09-27, 2,000 yards and 1,400 yards for both the others. There was also the usual encircling perimeter track with 36 hardstandings. Two T2 hangars were provided, one between runway heads 09 and 32 by the Spalford road and the other on the technical site, which was on the south-east side of the airfield between runways 27 and 32. A Bl hangar was positioned to the north-east between runway heads 14 and 21. Bomb stores lay in the wood between and beyond runway heads 14 and 21 and the camp sites were dispersed around and beyond Wigsley village and consisted of eight domestic, two communal and sick quarters. Maximum accommodation was put at 1,450 males and 351 females.

Early in February 1942, No. 455 Squadron, an RAAF unit, arrived from Swinderby, Wigsley's parent station. Its Hampdens were soon in action and, as with most Hampden squadrons, minelaying played a big part in their operational duties. However, their tenure at Wigsley was brief for in mid-April the squadron was withdrawn from Bomber Command and sent north to become a Coastal Command torpedo-bomber unit. Seven Hampdens failed to return from operations and four others were lost in crashes while flying from Wigsley. This also brought an end to the airfield's short history as a operational squadron station in Bomber Command, as from thereon all the units based there were involved in some form of operational training.

No. 1654 Heavy Conversion Unit with a few Lancasters and Manchesters was installed in May 1942 to finish crews for No. 5 Group. Four Lancasters were lost on operations when the unit was called upon to assist in the bombing campaign. As with other Lancaster HCUs, a severe shortage of aircraft saw them withdrawn and replaced by Stirlings for several months. Wigsley came under No. 7 Group when most bomber OTUs and HCUs were transferred to this revived formation in November 1944 but No. 1654 HCU continued in residence until September 1945 when it was moved to Woolfox Lodge. Bomber Command operations from Wigsley had cost 17 aircraft missing or crashed in the UK, 13 being Hampdens with four Lancasters.

Wigsley received no further flying units although as Swinderby's satellite it was frequently used by training aircraft from that station and, with a small holding party, the airfield continued to function for `circuits and bumps' until the summer of 1958 when the RAF finally withdrew. It was sold during the next decade and by the 1970s few buildings remained, agriculture having taken over.
:)
 

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