View Full Version : WW2 airfield aerial photos

29th Jan 2008, 18:48
Slightly geeky question but I'm trying find aerial pictures of RAF airfields taken during or just after the war. I've found a load on wikipedia but these are generally of USAAFE 8th/9th Air Force sites - I'd like to find ones of BoB airfields, preferably in digital format/online.

Any ideas? :)

29th Jan 2008, 19:17
Google maps is good, I think google earth is better although i've never tried it, however, I did read in the newspaper that you can fly around in an F16.

Here's Kenley airfeild not far from me. I believe it was used to test spitfires and hurricanes (a bit like boscombe but back in history). Now it's used for gliding by the Air Training Corps and a civvie gliding club.

Here's the famous biggin hill, great airshows every year, however, not only is it famous for that it was also one of most "bombed" UK airfields during the war.

That's all I know

Not bothered if it helps, had a good time looking for them

Roland Pulfrew
29th Jan 2008, 19:22

I believe that much of the photo recce stuff from WWII is now stored in the PRO, I believe, in Swindon!! Not sure if they ahve them in digital format or whether you would have to scan the originals but might be worth a go.

Either that or have you tried JARIC?

29th Jan 2008, 19:37
JARIC no longer hold the archive - it was mostly shipped out to Keele (sp?) University.
Quite a bit was destroyed instead of shipped to cut costs (including almost all of the pre-invasion images for D-Day - to quote the guilty party "it was just loads of films of nothing but beaches")
Best bet for the UK in wartime was the Luftwaffe stuff - should be available via Keele or the PRO.
RAF imagery of the UK is rare-ish during the war years (oodles of it for Europe) but there was some fantastic stuff from just after VE day. I remember looking at a random tin only to find the most amazing low-level oblique Mosquito imagery of Lincolnshire from about 200ft. Lots of bomber airfields on that roll, but i'm afraid I have moved jobs now and no longer have the sortie details.

29th Jan 2008, 19:43

www.evidenceincamera.co.uk (http://www.evidenceincamera.co.uk)

Appropriately named after the in-house publication of the day (I believe). I am sure they will have plently of Allied military airfields.

29th Jan 2008, 21:00
Nice one, cheers folks - I'll give the PRO a shot. It looks like the ex JARIC stuff is all non-UK.


29th Jan 2008, 21:30
For Norfolk, try:


This will give you the facility of comparing 1946 with 1988 for most of the area (Tithe Maps as well for the historians!)


29th Jan 2008, 21:35
You can find very good wartime aerial photos of RAF and USAAF airfields in Britain in the following "After the Battle" books:

The Battle of Britain Then and Now.
Bases of Bomber Command Then and Now.
Airfields of the Eighth Then and Now.
UK Airfields of the Ninth Then and Now.

Look for them on Amazon. They're pricey but worth it.


29th Jan 2008, 22:41
Thanks again - I'm lovin' the Norfolk Council photo site thing - very nice!

30th Jan 2008, 07:57
Thanks again - I'm lovin' the Norfolk Council photo site thing - very nice!

Do you work for McDonalds?:hmm:

30th Jan 2008, 08:29
Not quite - the pay's not as good and our microwave's no good at doing chips but we do get a better uniform.

30th Jan 2008, 21:32
Still on topic but looking at airfields now, if you are interested then have a look at my site here;


These are all photos I have taken of old airfields as they are now. There are also alot of memorial photos, aerial photos and a variety of other pictures.