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c.smith10

RAF MIldenhall to close?

118 posts in this topic

Speaking to some PR guys from Mildenhall last night. Working on the premise that the base will* close in 2020, the Base Commander is very much of a mind to stage a last Open Day, and they want to do it on the scale of the previous shows. They are expecting 250,000 visitors per day just like in the past. Obviously there is much detail planning to do, but these guys really want to put on a proper show; burgers, Budweiser and all. Here's hoping.

*Politics aside, unless there is a major sea change, the tankers will go to Germany. Their operation field already covers from Mid Atlantic to the Arctic, Eastern Europe, North and Central Africa, The Gulf and Afghanistan. Moving 300 miles is a minor detail when you cover a patch like that.

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Well I for one hope we do get one last harrah

Edited by mungo1974

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Does anyone have any updates on the Mildenhall closure?

I keep promising myself a trip over there to take some photos. Don't want to get there and it's all locked up with the lights out.

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Cheers bentwaters. I will keep an eye on that. I did check out the official RAF Mildenhall web site and found out the last MC-130 Combat Talon has already left.

I tend to find these things out after the event!

Would like to see the OV-22 Ospreys, but I understand they operate quite often at night. What are the chances of seeing them in the circuit during the day?

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Sometimes, it's pot luck. At night they wander far and wide.

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I was there twice in the last 12 months, Ospreys were flying most of the time I was there. My best friend married a USAF Sergeant.

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I've heard the Ospreys are busy mostly on Fridays during the day, but please don't quote me on that. Still got to go get them myself..

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Downside of a Friday is Lakenheath only work a half day.

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Cheers for the info guys. I have a few days off work week after next. If the weather is reasonable I might pop over and spend a few hours there.

Fingers crossed for some interesting 'visitors'.

Thanks guys.

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Thats a shame. I have some great memories if the Air Fetes of the 80s and 90s

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What RAF bases will be left, I wonder? At this rate there won't be any.

I see some Government person has leaped up to sat that the military bases up for sale will allow lots and lots of new housing. That might be a good thing but culdn't some thought be given to using some of them as regional airports?

Just a thought ...

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I very much doubt the great British public realise just how much has closed in the last 30 odd years.

Off the top of my head (and all these stations were open when I joined the RAF in 1981, many of which I served at):

UK:

Aberporth

Abingdon

Alconbury

Bampton Castle

Bawtry Hall

Benbecula

Bentley Priory

Bentwaters

Binbrook

Brawdy

Buchan

Catterick

Chilmark

Chivenor

Church Fenton

Coltishall

Cottesmore

Dishforth

Ely Hospital

Finningley

Greenham Common

Halton Hospital

Hereford

Hullavington

Innsworth

Kemble

Kinloss

Leuchars

Llanbedr

Locking

Lyneham

Macrihanish

Manston

Molesworth

Mountbatten

Neatishead

Newton

Nocton Hall Hospital

North Luffenham

Pitreavie Castle

Portreath

St Mawgan

Saxa Vord

Scampton (just the Reds left)

Sculthorpe

Sealand

Stanmore Park

Staxton Wold

Stornoway

Swanton Morley

Uxbridge

Upper Heyford

Wattisham

Welford

West Drayton

West Freugh

West Raynham

Wethersfield

Woodbridge

Wroughton Hospital

Wyton (now Joint Service)

RAFG::

Bruggen

Gatow

Gutersloh

Laarbruch

Rheindahlen

Wildenrath

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I very much doubt the great British public realise just how much has closed in the last 30 odd years.

Off the top of my head (and all these stations were open when I joined the RAF in 1981, many of which I served at):

UK:

Aberporth

Abingdon

Alconbury

Bampton Castle

Bawtry Hall

Benbecula

Bentley Priory

Bentwaters

Binbrook

Brawdy

Buchan

Catterick

Chilmark

Chivenor

Church Fenton

Coltishall

Cottesmore

Dishforth

Ely Hospital

Finningley

Greenham Common

Halton Hospital

Hereford

Hullavington

Innsworth

Kinloss

Leuchars

Llanbedr

Locking

Lyneham

Macrihanish

Manston

Molesworth

Mountbatten

Neatishead

Newton

Nocton Hall Hospital

North Luffenham

St Mawgan

Molesworth

Pitreavie Castle

Portreath

Scampton (just the Reds left)

Saxa Vord

Sculthorpe

Sealand

Stanmore Park

Staxton Wold

Stornoway

Swanton Morley

Uxbridge

Upper Heyford

Wattisham

Welford

West Drayton

West Freugh

West Raynham

Wethersfield

Woodbridge

Wroughton Hospital

Wyton (now Joint Service)

RAFG::

Bruggen

Gutersloh

Laarbruch

Rheindahlen

Wildenrath

The Reds may be the only ones flying out of Scampton but it's also home to the three units below (for operations and training) so must be considered as being very much open.

  • Control and Reporting Centre
  • 1 Air Control Centre
  • Mobile Met Unit

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What RAF bases will be left, I wonder? At this rate there won't be any.

I see some Government person has leaped up to sat that the military bases up for sale will allow lots and lots of new housing. That might be a good thing but culdn't some thought be given to using some of them as regional airports?

Just a thought ...

The problem is that even the regional airports we currently have are not expanding in the way they like. And some of those have closed, such as Sheffield, Manston and Plymouth.

We need housing in this country, and the MoD has a lot of land. And if I'm honest, as much as I am an aviation enthusiast, I would rather see unused airfields built on than abandoned. Turning Hullavington over for housing may also stop the scheme to turn Kemble -a thriving airfield- into a housing estate, so that might be a good thing.

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Wow,...the list that Deb`s posted certainly makes you think doesn`t it! Isn`t Hullavington a listed site due to its grass airfield and the fact that it is a fine example of an early expansion scheme airfield?

Cheers

Tony

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Not all those in that long list are closed to aviation activities. Some are operating as civilian airports so its not all bad.

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I believe that the plan is to sell off the Hullavington airfield site, although I am not sure how they intend to achieve that since, IIRC while a major part of the technical site was originally Bell Farm owned Mr F J Huntley (indeed several of the original farm buildings are still there and are Listed), the airfield proper was gifted by the local peer and reverts to ownership should the MOD relinquish the site.

It's also a bloody stupid place to build property since it would inevitibly destroy the character of the villages of Hullavington (to the NW) and Stanton St Quintin (to the S).

Furthermore, Hullavington is probably the best example of an Expansion Period airfield - indeed, while it wasn't the first to open as such, the buildings there were the Lutyens blueprints for the rest of the Expansion Period airfields (and, again, many of these buildings are Listed). In fact, to my knowledge, Hullavington was the only Expansion Period airfield where the buildings were built of local stone (a requirement of the gifting of the land) and the only one of 2 airfields that had an A Class Officers' Mess (the other being at Manby and which is now a hotel and Listed Building).

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I couldn't agree more Debs.

I have been flying out of Hullavington for more years than I want to admit, and in my humble opinion, it is the finest pre-war airfield in the whole of the U.K set in glorious countryside.

Sadly, for all it architectural and historic merit the Treasury couldn't give a fig. As I've heard it once described, " they know the cost of everything and the value of nothing"

Blogs off

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Indeed.

Look at the stupid fools' attitude to Bicester which is the finest example of a Pre-Expansion Period Airfield and, AFAIK the only one left!

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We're wiping the history of the 20th Century out at a massive rate. Just in Cambridgeshire there are plans to build new towns or business parks at Alconbury, Bourn, Oakington and Wyton. Warboys is an industrial estate, Basingbourn is being left in limbo following the Libyan training fiasco. Upwood is becoming ever more derelict. The saddest thing is at those sites slated for redevelopment the developers want to demolish as much as they can - there's no use for aircraft hangers (too big, drafty, uneconomical). History, smishtory

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Hopefully they'll leave Bassingbourn alone - the airfield became an Infantry Training Area and is perfect for my cadets to learn fieldcraft.

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