Report - - RAF Manby Officers Mess, Jan. 2018 | Military Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - RAF Manby Officers Mess, Jan. 2018


28DL Member
28DL Member
Hello all, my first post, how exciting! Before I go through with the formalities of the report, I'd just like to say I have browsed this forum for a while and there is some excellent work kicking about, whether mine scrubs up we shall see!

The Exploring

So, Manby Officers Mess is a well-trodden path it appears but it was a set of photos I was very proud of and felt took a different angle than normal and was keen to share nonetheless. The actual explore was a very casual one indeed, I visited with two fellow explorer mates and my brother. We mooched around for a good couple of hours, only interrupted by a couple of groups of people indulging in some Urban Exploring themselves! The building itself is really beginning to show its age and is badly burnt out in a couple of areas, but nonetheless, it was nice to see a variety of objects and artefacts kicking about, particularly when you consider the trip that preceded this was to the now-shell that is RAF Upwood.

The History

It appears customary to post a small history section with each post so I shall sum up Manby quickly as I'm sure its now a well covered subject. RAF Manby officially opened in 1938 and was the first airfield in Lincolnshire to be built with paved runways. During the war, Manby played host to a variety of squadrons, disciplined in both ground and air operations. No.2782 Defence Squadron (later RAF Regiment) was Manby's first fully-fledged defensive squadron, manning a variety of defence mechanisms including machine gun, 20MM cannon and BOFOR guns. In terms of air operations, Manby was home to No.1 Air Armaments Training School, who remained at Manby for the duration of hostilities, utilising a huge variation of aircraft. In July 1944, the school was upgraded to 'Empire' status and with the increased workload that bought, Manby was subject to a major expansion.
Post War, Manby was to become the home of the RAF Flying College which like the No.1 AAS that preceded it, operated a variation of aircraft. 1954 saw an English Electric Canberra (WH699) flying from Manby, become the first aircraft to fly over the North Pole. Now renamed the RAF College of Air Warfare, Manby received a contingent of new Jet Provosts, replacing the propeller driven Percival Provosts. Around this period, Manby was also home the 'Macaws' display team who operated the schools Jet Provost aircraft, this venture lasting around 8 years. In 1972, with the closure of RAF Strubby down the road, Manby received the Hawker Siddeley Dominies that had been flying from there but by now rumours were strong that Manby was next to be closed.
The rumours proved correct and Manby was closed at the end of March 1974. Many of the housing sections of the base came under control of RAF Binbrook while the main bulk of the technical site was sold of to Lincolnshire County Council who still own premises today. For the rest of the base today, the majority of buildings form part of the Manby Business Park and the hangers are in use for storage, but the former Officers Mess sits abandoned. The main flying field is now used as an off-road driving centre.

The Photos


The now unmistakable exterior of the building. Must have been quite the sight in its heyday.


One of a selection of drums kicking about, not get much of a tune out of them anymore though!


Who doesn't want Aliens on VHS?


You do have to wonder, where is the other one?

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The attempted burning of this book didn't quite materialise. But it makes for a lovely aesthetic.


Del Boy and Rodney haven't been for the chandeliers yet...


This shoe was in a pair, but all I can say is I wouldn't want to pick the other one up, unless you possess a large stick...


Somewhere in this world, there is a deck missing this card...


Peeling ceilings are stunning. Should be a decor option all the time.


Whatever was in this has turned fluffy, its a questionable dare if ever there was one.


Some cracking post-Christmas offers in January 2011. Jack Daniels and Coke for £1.60, lets just say, that probably wouldn't end well...


The clarity setting on Photoshop is probably my favourite.


60's Karaoke on VHS. A relic from a bygone era....


Seeing a dismembered pool table was an interesting yet unnecessary experience...

This lonely chair waits for its next bottom. But with the questionable stains on the cushion, i suspect that's a while away yet!


'The Wall of Comedy' look at any abandoned place and you'll probably find it. The classic stuff represented here...


Harry Kane is literally everywhere these days!


I think its a till? Maybe someone can shed some light...


Well, last one from me, some window and some sky.

Well, if you've made it this far, thanks for having a gander. I'm in my second year at Uni and really trying to promote my work so feedback and advice would be most welcome. And for anyone who does Instagram, I post a variety of stuff under the name oliver_atkin_photography, please feel free to have a look! As for this post, I just hope it all uploaded okay and you enjoyed reading.

Anyway, best wishes to you all and thanks for looking!

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