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PPRuNe Forums Thread Wiki: Which Aerodrome Mk III
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been a member for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: nvubu
Here is a read only link to the Aerodrome Database - WhichAerodrome.xlsx. Up to date as of 1/5/2019. Catching up slowly - up to May 2019 now (Mar 2020).

Here are some "rules" for Which Aerodrome. These are based upon the original suggestions from the very first thread, and have a few additions. Also please be patient as when you are active others may be asleep.
  • A historic picture of an aerodrome will be posted. Newer pictures are allowed but the theme here is to compare/contrast old with new as well as identifying aerodromes which no longer exist.
  • The person who correctly identifies it will be declared the 'winner' by the original poster.
  • That winner shall either post another challenge or declare the floor open. Anyone may then post the next challenge.
  • If the winner of the challenge does not respond to the notification of their success within 48 hours, an Open house can be declared when there is consensus between multiple other posters which are on line.
  • When the poster of a challenge does not respond within 48 hours of a posted answer, this poster can be declared winner if the answer is considered correct in a consensus of multiple other posters.
  • If Open House is declared, regular posters should not jump in immediately, but time should be given for those who are not great at naming the correct location as they may have some good images.
  • There will only be one challenge running at a time.
  • Try to use elderly photos and not Google Earth, Zoom Earth or any other search engine, pics
  • Try to post images that are not already present on internet, as Google Image Search will find them if they are.
  • Personal photos are acceptable as they show the aerodrome as it is now.
  • When confirming the correct location, the location and winner should be stated to negate any deletion of posts.
  • Please don't delete your posts, let everyone see your successes, failures and challenges.
Anyone can edit it so long as they have been here for 90 days with 90 posts. Let's get consensus before changing and not go crazy Thanks to Self Loading Bear for suggesting that we use a wiki. Which Aerodrome I Which Aerodrome II nvubu.

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Which Aerodrome Mk III

Old 21st Jun 2012, 19:09
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not Woburn Abbey, although moving in the right direction
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 20:24
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Badminton?
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 21:27
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not Badminton - although there is a horsey link.
nor Radlett - but getting closer

further clue. Aircraft assembly took place here during the war.

Further research reveals that there might only have been one runway - the shorter East West one, so possible apologies for the earlier info.

The USAAF were also based here.

Last edited by nvubu; 21st Jun 2012 at 21:29.
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 21:43
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Where's sabredog?
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 21:53
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Woodley is closer than Radlett - you're 12-13 miles away

Ther airfield was used in the 1950s, and almost probably into the 1960s.

Last edited by nvubu; 21st Jun 2012 at 22:03. Reason: added distance
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 22:19
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Langley Airfield is even closer
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Old 21st Jun 2012, 22:55
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Can't be Hanworth or Heston 'cos they've been done before. Smith's Lawn was used for aircraft assembly but no USAAF presence that I know of. This leaves Aldermaston which had an MAP area and was used by USAAF.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 06:05
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chevvron has it, but by exclusion, as it is Smith's Lawn.

The photo is of TRH Prince of Wales and Prince George flew by Imperial Airways Argosy G-EBLF City of Glasgow (Captain Gordon Olley) from France to Smith’s Lawn, Windsor Great Park, on their return home from a South American tour.

In 1940 an air-raid on the Vickers Armstrong aircraft factory at Weybridge forced VA to relocate to Smith's Lawn where from the 1920s a grass airstrip already existed for use mainly by the Prince of Wales. The site was used for the assembly of, for example, high altitude Wellington bombers.

There were two brick hangers, one situated near the road that comes in from Cheesemans Gate where fuselage sections were built. the second hangar, the Flight Hangar, was where the aircraft were completed. During the war, 64 Wellington Mk VIs were assembled on Smith's Lawn and some aircraft were modified to carry an airborne lifeboat quite possibly tested on Virginia Water which still had some water in it. Two examples of this lifeboat, that would be dropped to ditched airmen, remain at Brooklands to this day.

The airfield was camouflaged with dummy hay stacks and canvas lorries. The east-west runway was always grass and unlit. A compass swinging base was located near Smith's Lawn Cottages.

For most of the war, this whole area, including Virginia Water, was closed to the public although young lads sometimes sneaked through the surrounding woods to watch what was going on.

In 1940 the airfield had been used by Hawker Hurricane fighter aircraft, designed by Sydney Camm born in Windsor and educated at the Royal Free School.

Douglas Dakotas (DC3s) were permanently stationed at Smiths Lawn and later the 27th Transport Group of the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) who set up an operating base of wooden and canvas huts near Cumberland Gate, under the large trees. The camouflage nets covering the hangars were very effective and from a distance looked like ploughed fields.

On one occasion an air battle took place overhead resulting in a German Messerschmitt ME 109 crashing in the Cavalry Exercise Ground. Amazingly the pilot came out of the aircraft almost unhurt and was taken prisoner.
The Duke of Edinburgh used to fly from it, and it is now a Polo Field.

The airfield was also mentioned a few pages ago, whick reminded me that I had this photo of it.

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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 07:17
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1 horse races are boring

Look at F1.

Please how can more people get involved, rather than the automated searcher that is running the forum.

Glf
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 08:55
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I guess there may be approx 1,500 images on Mel's List - that's some collection - - As Del Shannon said in 1965 - 'Keep Searchin'
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:03
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Never thought I'd get that one as I was totally unaware the USAAF used Smith's Lawn.
Years ago there was a book called 'Beneath the City Streets' which mentioned an 'underground aircraft factory' under nearby Wentworth Golf Course. I've often wondered if the Wimpeys assembled at Smiths Lawn were actually built in this factory.

Open House

PS: Further to the remarks by Tacklebury; the only time I've used 'the web' to provide an answer is when the photo is a 'vertical' of an airfield, otherwise I've used personal knowledge either from my own explorations, or from Plaistow books or Action Stations books. (sorry about the adverts but I think it's justified)
I think it's too easy if you can just find the exact photo on the internet anyway.

Last edited by chevvron; 22nd Jun 2012 at 10:15.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:31
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May I take up the OH from Chevvron

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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:43
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Is that an airfield? it looks more like the POW interrogation centre at Barnes!
If it is an airfield my bid is Graveley (Hunts)
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:45
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It is, not one I had heard of until a friend flew in there earlier this week. You are looking at the pilots ready room I believe.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:48
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Stow Maries Aerodrome.
P.Ms for NVUBU,Seacue and Gulfstreamdriver.
No automation, just a knowledge of ex RFC aerodrome architecture.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 10:52
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That's the one, sabredog yhc
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 11:44
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Many thanks,LFH.
P.M. for you shortly.
For the moment;
Open house.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 11:57
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chevvron - there's also a painting by Charles Cundall, dating from 1944, illustrates 'Planes of the United States Air Force on Smith's Lawn'.

look forward to the PM SD.
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 15:20
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1944 and he was allowed to give out the location? I wasn't alive then, but surely it should have been 'somewhere in England'!
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Old 22nd Jun 2012, 18:32
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As it's open house, here's an easy one - it has been done before, but with a modern photo


Last edited by nvubu; 26th Dec 2012 at 16:10.
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