View Full Version : Ibsley

28th Mar 2007, 09:25
I'm tyring to gather information/pictures etc on the control tower at RAF Ibsley. Ibsley was closed shortly after WWII but remarkably the control tower still stands, allthough in a rather poor state. There are moves afoot to restore it so any pics/stories etc would be very useful.I guess it's also possible that there might be some old boys with personal memories of Ibsley reading pprune,if so please get in touch!
Anyone who worked in the tower or been in it whilst it was operational, i'd be very glad to hear from you (i realise it's a long shot).
Also,any pilots remember the Ibsley beacon?


28th Mar 2007, 09:35

Do a quick google search for 'John Levesley', he maybe able to help.

He lives locally and has done a lot of research into local airfields.


28th Mar 2007, 12:12
Have a look at:



28th Mar 2007, 15:17
mr grubby,zh875, thanks for those, very useful. a lot of info' is already in the hands of those looking to restore the tower, i'm hoping to find information about the inside of it,what equipment was there,how it was furnished etc as photos of the inside of the tower are thin on the ground. As i said, it may be a little too late to get personal memories from those who were there but one can only ask....

1st Apr 2007, 16:34
Some pictures I took at Iblsey on 3rd March 2007 (http://www.airfields.fotopic.net/c1223701.html) with some links to other relevant sites as well.

The RAF Ibsley group have produced a very good book with sounds like something you would find useful.


Ex Oggie
19th Apr 2007, 20:19
Many thanks for bringing this subject up. Is there much left in the way of domestic accomodation at Iblsey? My father was billeted there during the early 1950's, whilst serving as an Ops Room Supervisor with Southern Radar in the Sopley bunker.


20th Apr 2007, 07:32
Ex Oggie
Apart from the local cottages that some service personnel were billeted in and Moyles court school, which had various uses for service personnel, all buildings on the airfield are long gone(control tower not included). However, i believe there are a few old buildings a half mile or so north of the airfield(one of which was a boiler room) which have been repainted in the original colour and house a small exhibition of memorabilia. I'm unsure about specific details of this at the moment. I f you have any pics/stories could you p.m.me?
I do know the airfield was used for a few years as accomodation for the sopley base staff (an interesting place too!)

Ex Oggie
22nd Apr 2007, 16:09
One story I remember off the top of my head was during a particularly cold January night during 1952.

My father witnessed the in-flight fire of the Valiant prototype in the night sky. Unfortunately, it crashed with one fatality. As he was the most senior person available at both Ibsley & Sopley, he was given the unpleasant task of being IC crash guard. Apparently this involved trawling both Ibsley & Sopley for any unfortunate individual that couldn't think of a damn good reason why they were not available. They then had the 'pleasure' of several days in sub zero temperatures whilst the investigation and recovery took place.

He was again the witness to another fatal accident later the same year, this time with a near miss with death himself. He was narrowly missed by one of the engines when John Derry was tragically killed at Farnborough, so close he felt the heat, I am told.