RAF Wiggonby, Cumbria 1943-1952.

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Deacs, Apr 7, 2019.

  1. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria.

    Just been today to Watch tree nature reserve Watchree Nature Reserve at Wiggonby, Cumbria and didn't realise it was an airfield in WW2.

    Great Orton - Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust UK
    Opened in June 1943, the former RAF Great Orton, known locally as Wiggonby, was mainly used as a satellite airfield for nearby Silloth by Vickers Wellingtons of No 6 Operational Training Unit. A few other flying unit detachments were stationed here in WW2 for shorter periods, notably No 55 Operational Training Unit (Hawker Hurricanes) and two air-sea rescue squadrons which operated Vickers Warwicks. As the Second World War ended in Europe, the airfield became home to No 249 Maintenance Unit for bomb storage until both this unit and the airfield closed in August 1952.

    Sections of all three runways remain, also the perimeter track (now partly a minor road) and the control tower, and in recent years there was some light aircraft activity; the site also became home to a wind farm in the 1990s. The foot and mouth crisis of 2001 saw Great Orton airfield become the main site in Britain for the disposal of slaughtered animals – nearly half a million of them (mostly sheep) were killed and then buried in 26 pits surrounding the runways. The Watchtree Nature Reserve was later established to restore the site.

    Here are some photos of what is left.
    20190407_132131.jpg 20190407_132221.jpg 20190407_132101.jpg 20190407_132111.jpg 20190407_124758.jpg 20190407_124457.jpg 20190407_124142.jpg 20190407_124507.jpg 20190407_124020.jpg 20190407_124044.jpg 20190407_133427.jpg 20190407_133439.jpg

    Missed a memorial will go back in the Summer and there are some interesting graffiti on some buildings will have to try and find them next time too.

    dbf, Tricky Dicky and Peter Clare like this.

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