- RAF Bungay
Infobox Military Structure
name= Royal Air Force Station Bungay
Royal Air Force Station Flixton
USAAF Station 125
location= Located Near
Beccles, Suffolk, United Kingdom
caption= Bungay Airfield - 6 October 1945
type= Military Airfield
United States Army Air Forces Royal Navy Royal Air Force
Eighth Air Force Fleet Air Arm
RAF Maintenance Command
European Theatre of World War II
Air Offensive, Europe July 1942 - May 1945 Location map|Suffolk
lat = 52.43
long = 1.41
caption = Map showing the location of RAF Bungay within Suffolk.
float = right
background = white
width = 200
RAF Bungay (also known as
Flixton) is a former World War IIairfield in England. The field is located 6 miles SW of Becclesin Suffolkon the south bank of the Waveney River close to the B1062 Harleston to Bungayroad.
The airfield is also known as
Flixtonafter the village near which it was built.
Bungay airfield was originally planned as a satellite base for
RAF Hardwickand was constructed by Kirk & Kirk Ltd., during 1942 with a main runway of 6,000 feet in length and two intersecting secondary runways, one of 4220 feet and the other of 4,200 feet. In common with other airfields of the period, the technical, administrative and domestic buildings were dispersed to lessen the impact of any enemy air attack. The buildings were all of a temporary nature and the various sites were chiefly to the west of the airfield.
The airfield was turned over to the
United States Army Air Force Eighth Air Forceand designated Station 125.
428th Bomb Squadron
Bungay was still unfinished when the 428th Bomb Squadron, assigned to the 310th Bombbardment Group (Medium) at
RAF Hardwickarrived with fourteen B-25 Mitchellmedium bombers in October 1942. The squadron moved on to Mediouna, French Moroccoon 18 November.
329th Bomb Squadron
In December 1942, eight
B-24 Liberators the 329th Bomb Squadron of the 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) at RAF Hardwickwere sent to Bungay to prepare for special intruder operations. These aircraft conducted raids in bad weather with the mission of harassing the German air raid warning system. The 329th flew these missions until March 1943 when they rejoined the 93d at Hardwick.
446th Bombardment Group (Heavy)
Additional construction was performed at Bungay until November 1943 when the airfield received the
Eighth Air Force446th Bombardment Group (Heavy) from Lowry AAF Colorado. The 446th was assigned to the 20th Combat Bombardment Wing and the group tail code was a "Circle-H". It's operational squadrons were:
* 704th Bomb Squadron (FL)
* 705th Bomb Squadron (HN)
* 706th Bomb Squadron (RT)
* 707th Bomb Squadron (JU)The 446th opeated chiefly against strategic objectives on the Continent from December 1943 until April 1945. Targets included
U-boatinstallations at Kiel, the port at Bremen, a chemical plant at Ludwigshafen, ball-bearingworks at Berlin, aero-engine plants at Rostock, aircraft factories at Munich, marshalling yards at Coblenz, motor works at Ulm, and oil refineries at Hamburg.
Besides strategic missions, the group often carried out support and interdictory operations. It supported the Normandy invasion in June 1944 by attacking strong points, bridges, airfields, transportation, and other targets in
France. Aided ground forces at Caenand St Loduring July by hitting bridges, gun batteries, and enemy troops. Dropped supplies to Allied troops near Nijmegenduring the airborne attack on Holland in September. Bombed marshalling yards, bridges, and road junctions during the Battle of the Bulge, December 1944 - January 1945. Dropped supplies to airborne and ground troops near Weselduring the Allied assault across the Rhine in March 1945.
The 446th Bomb Group flew its last combat mission on
25 April, attacking a bridge near Salzburg. It returned to Sioux Falls AAF South Dakotaduring June and July 1945, being deactivated there on 18 August1945.
Royal Navy/Royal Air Force use
After the war, the field was turned over to the Royal Navy and the station became HMS Europa, being the satellite of HMS Sparrowhawk (
RNAS Hatston) where 3 Fleet Air Arm squadrons were based.
In 1946 it was returned to RAF control and was assigned to No. 53 Maintenance Unit and became a maintenance sub-unit of 94 MU which had its HQ at
RAF Great Ashfield. Stored on the runways and in the buildings, were 250 lb., 500 lb., 2000 lb., and 4000 lb. bombs, balloon cable cutting cartridges, depth charges, 7" parachute flares and German ammunition. The latter two items were eventually taken to 53 MU at RAF Pulham, and destroyed there. Some time in July 1949, the site was taken over by 53 MU until Bungay's closure in 1955. The airfield was eventually put up for sale and disposed of in 1961/1962.
With the end of military control Bungay airfield was the base of the
Martlesham HeathParachute Club, with Cessna 182G-ATNU and crop sprayers, including Pawnee D G-BFRY. In 1981-82, the Flixton Church Roof Restoration Fund held mini air shows. Until 1983, the main runway and peritrack were in good condition, but the following year work started on breaking them up.
In the spring of 1986 a new set of oak gates were hung at St Mary’s Church, Flixton, which stands close to the old airfield. These were bought as a result of donations by veterans of the 446th BG to replace those originally presented in 1945 by the Americans at Flixton. A small memorial plaque carries the inscription, "These gates were presented in memory of the men of the 446th Bombardment Group, USAAF, who gave their lives in the defence of freedom, 1941-1945".
Of the airfield itself, most of the wartime buildings, including the control tower and hangars, have long since been demolished and the airfield has largely returned to agricultural use. Several buildings in the technical site survive, with wartime paintings on the inside walls of the former dining hall.
The former airfield is the home of
Buxted Chickensand also a large mushroom farm, in the early 2000s, Bungay's largest employer Clays (St Ives Group) failed to gain planning permission to re-site their printing factory on the airfield.
List of RAF stations
* USAAF Eighth Air Force - World War II
* Freeman, Roger A. (1978) Airfields of the Eighth: Then and Now. After the Battle ISBN 0900913096
* Jansen, Harold E. (1989) The History of the 446th Bombardment Group (Heavy).
* Maurer, Maurer (1983). Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0892010924.
* [http://home.att.net/~jbaugher/usafserials.html] USAAS-USAAC-USAAF-USAF Aircraft Serial Numbers--1908 to present
* [http://www.controltowers.co.uk/B/Bungay.htm] www.controltowers.co.uk Bungay
* [http://mighty8thaf.preller.us/php/1Loc.php?Base=Bungay] Bungay at mighty8thaf.preller.us
* [http://www.multimap.com/map/photo.cgi?client=public&X=632000&Y=287000&scale=25000&width=700&height=400&gride=632400&gridn=286800&lang=&db=hcgaz&coordsys=gb Aerial Photo of RAF Bungay from Multimap.com]
* [http://www.bigenealogy.com/suffolk/flixton_parish2.htm Flixton Parish] — aka St Mary South Elmham
* [http://www.aviationmuseum.net/ Flixton Air Museum] — Norfolk and Suffolk
* [http://www.446bg.com/index.html 446th BG(H)]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Bungay — may refer to:* Bungay, Suffolk, East Anglia, England * Bungay language, an Algonquian languagePeople with the surname Bungay:* Frank Bungay (born 1905), former professional footballer * Stephen Bungay (21st century), British management consultant … Wikipedia
RAF Alconbury — is a Royal Air Force station adjacent to the Stukeleys, near Alconbury and Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire in the United Kingdom, about 60 miles (100 km) north of London. Its runway and flight line were closed in the mid 1990s and it is currently a… … Wikipedia
RAF Hardwick — Infobox Military Structure name= Royal Air Force Station Hardwick USAAF Station 104 location= Located Near Bungay, Norfolk, England coordinates=coord|52|28|14|N|001|18|41|E| caption= Hardwick Airfield 16 April 1946 type= Military Airfield code=HC … Wikipedia
RAF Andover — For both the types of transport aircraft called Andover used by the RAF, see Avro Andover (1920s) and Hawker Siddeley Andover (1960s present day) .Location map|Hampshire caption= RAF Andover, shown within Hampshire lat= 51.209 long= 1.528 width=… … Wikipedia
RAF Molesworth — Royal Air Force Molesworth USAAF Station 107 … Wikipedia
RAF Daws Hill — Royal Air Force Station Daws Hill USAAF Station 1101 Located Near … Wikipedia
RAF Debden — Royal Air Force Station Debden Carver Barracks USAAF Station 156 … Wikipedia
RAF Martlesham Heath — Coordinates: 52°03′40″N 1°16′21″E / 52.0611°N 1.2724°E / 52.0611; 1.2724 ( … Wikipedia
List of RAF stations — This List of RAF stations is a comprehensive list of all stations, airbases, airfields and administrative headquarters of the Royal Air Force past and present.:Note Current RAF Stations will be listed under the currently recognised county of the… … Wikipedia
No. 74 Squadron RAF — Active 1 July 1917 3 July 1919 3 September 1935 31 August 1971 19 October 1984 1 October 1992 5 October 1992 22 September 2000 Role Fighter … Wikipedia