Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation


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Bomber Command Bases


The expansion of Bomber Command in 1942/3 began to put a severe strain on the organisational administration of it's units resulting in the introduction of an intermediate level of command between Group HQ's and Station.  Thus in March 1943 was born the Base system.  A Base consisted of a Base Station with one or two sub-stations.  Each Base was commanded by an Air Commodore and initially identified by the name of the Base Station and the role of the Base, e.g. Topcliffe Training Base, Leeming Operational Base.  However, from September 1943 Bases were re-designated by a two-number identifier, the first number indicating the Group and the second the number of the Base within that Group, the first in each Group being the Group's training Base.  Maps showing the locations of the bases are available in the Members' Area.

Basic crew training was undertaken at Operational Training Units (OTU), controlled by the three training Groups and did not come under this system.  However, having completed crew training, usually on Wellingtons, conversion to the four engined 'heavies' was conducted at a Heavy Conversion Unit (HCU).  These HCU's were located at the group's training base until November 1944, when all HCU's were transferred to No 7 (Training) Group.  On transfer the Base identifier changed, with the first number becoming a 7, still indicating the Group but the second number now indicated the base's original Group, e.g. 71 came from No 1 Group and 75 came from No 5 Group.

Besides the three training Groups (No's 91, 92 and 93), No's 8 and 100 Groups did not use this system.  Dates for units are those for which the unit was under the control of the base but it may have existed prior to the base formation and/or continued in existence after the base closed

 

No 1 Group

No 11 Base - Lindholme

This was formed as No 1 Group Heavy Conversion Base on 1 July 1943 at Lindholme, being numbered No 11 on 16 September 1943. Initially the HCUs were to be equipped with Halifaxes except No 1656 which was to also have Lancasters but on 1 November the Lancasters were split off to form No 1 Lancaster Finishing School.  It was transferred to No 7 Group and redesignated No 71 Base on 3 November 1944.

Base Commander: - 

1 Jul 1943                        A/Cdre G G Banting

Station From To Units Notes on units
Sub-Station

Blyton

1 Jul 1943 5 Nov 1944 No 1662 HCU

Fighter Affiliation Spitfire Flight

1 Flt, No 1 LFS

From 1 Jul 1943

From 1 Jul 1943

From 1 Nov 1943, to Hemswell 12 Feb 1943

Sub-Station

Faldingworth

24 Jul 1943  6 Jan 1944 No 1667 HCU

1 Flt, No 1 LFS

From 8 Aug 1943, to Sandtoft Feb 1943

From 1 Nov 1943, to Hemswell 24 Jan 1943

Base Station

Lindholme

1 Jul 1943 5 Nov 1944 No 1656 HCU

No 1667 HCU

HQ & 1 Flt, No 1 LFS

No 1503 BAT Flt

From 1 Jul 1943

to Faldingworth from 8 Aug 1943

From 1 Nov 1943, to Hemswell 20 Jan 1943

Disbanded 12 Aug 1943

Sub-Station

Sandtoft

10 Dec 1943 5 Nov 1944 No 1667 HCU

'D' Flying Instructors Flt

From 18 Feb 1944

From Jul 1943

Hemswell     No 1 Group Lancaster Operational Pool

No 1 LFS

From 23 Aug 1943

From Jan 1943, disbanded

Binbrook     No 1481 (Bomber) Gunnery Flt From 7 May 1943, to Ingham on 8-15 Mar 1944
Ingham     No 1481 (Bomber) Gunnery Flt

No 1687 (Bomber Defence) Training Flt

From 7 Mar 1944, absorbed into No 1687 Flt 15 Mar 1944

Formed 15 Mar 1944

Sturgate     No 1520 BAT Flt From 18 Sep 1944

Stations shown in the in italics were not Sub-stations of this Base but housed units under the control of this Base


No 12 Base - Binbrook,

This was formed as RAF Base, Binbrook on 25 April 1943, being redesignated No 12 Base on 16 September 1943.  It initially controlled the stations at Grimsby and Wickenby with Kelstern being added in August but in December, Wickenby was transferred to No 14 Base (Ludford Magna).  In April 1944 a flight of six crews was formed within the Base at Binbrook to act as a No 1 Group PFF team, being known as No Group Special Duties Flight.  The Special Duties Flight carried out its first marking operation on 30 April on an ammunition dump near Chatres.  After this first success the SDF continued to mark targets for the rest of No 1 Group as well as occasionally operating as 'Backers Up' for No 8 Group, however, from mid August references to the SDF on the Base records seem to disappear so it may have been disbanded or transferred to No 8 Group.  The Base disbanded on 12 April 1945.

Base Commander: - 

3 May 1943                      A/Cdre A M Wray

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Binbrook

25 Apr 1943 12 Apr 1945 No 460 Sqn

No 1481 (Bomber) Gunnery Flt

From 14/15 May 1943

From 7 May 1943 (Lodger from No 11 Base)

Sub-Station

Grimsby/Waltham

25 Apr 1943 12 Apr 1945 No 100 Sqn

No 550 Sqn

From 25 Apr 1943, to No 13 Base 2 Apr 1945

From 25 Nov 1943, to No 13 Base 1 Jan 1944

Sub-Station

Kelstern

18 Aug 1943 12 Apr 1945 No 625 Sqn From 1 Oct 1943
Sub-Station

Wickenby

25 Apr 1943 16 Dec 1943 No 12 Sqn From 25 Apr 1943, to No 14 Base 16 Dec 1943

No 13 Base - Elsham Wold,

This was supposed to have formed on 1 December 1943 at Elsham Wold but the unit records do not begin until 1 January 1944.  In April 1944, the Base was selected by HQ Bomber Command to carry out experiment in the centralization of function on each station.  The proposal was to place all flying units (Flying Echelon) under the control of the station commander, the administration elements under the Station Administrative Officer (Administrative Echelon) and all technical elements, including both station sections and and Servicing Echelons under the Chief Technical Officer (Technical Element), this was a system to one already in use at the OTUs.  By July this system had been found successful and was adopted.  The Base HQ disbanded on 15 December 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

 1 Jan 1944                       Gp Capt L W Dickens (Acting pending posting of Base Commander)

 3 Feb 1943                      A/Cdre R Ivelaw-Chapman (shot down 7 May 1944)

 7 May 1944                     Gp Capt W C Sheen

17 May 1944                    A/Cdre F R D Swain

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Elsham Wold

1 Dec 1943 15 Dec 1945 No 103 Sqn

No 576 Sqn

100 Sqn

From 1 Dec 1943

From 1 Dec 1943, to No 15 Base 30 Oct 1944

From 2 Apr 1945

Sub-station

Kirmington

1 Dec 1943 15 Dec 1945 No 166 Sqn

No 153 Sqn

From 1 Dec 1943

From 7 Oct 1944, to No 15 Base 15 Oct 1944

Sub-station

North Killingholme

1 Dec 1943 15 Dec 1945 No 550 Sqn From 3 Jan 1944

No 14 Base -Ludford Magna,

This was formed on 1 January 1944, effective from 16 December 1943 at Ludford Magna with Faldingworth and Wickenby as sub-stations, although the latter is recorded as being transferred to the control of Ludford Magna on 1 October 1943.  Initially Faldingworth was home to No 1667 HCU, which remained under the control of No 11 Base but it moved to Sandtoft on 18 February 1944 and on 1 March was replaced by No 300 Squadron, equipped with Wellingtons.  It disbanded on 25 October 1945

Base Commander: - 

 1 Jan 1944                        A/Cdre R S Blucke

12 Feb 1945                      A/Cdre E H Fielden

28 Jun 1945                       ?

 9 Jul 1945                         A/Cdre N H Fresson

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Ludford Magna

16 Dec 1943 25 Oct 1945 No 101 Sqn From 16 Dec 1943
Sub-station

Faldingworth

6 Jan 1944 25 Oct 1945 No 1667 HCU

No 300 Sqn

From  6 Jan 1944, to Sandtoft 18 Feb 1944

From 1 Mar 1944

Sub-station

Wickenby

1 Oct 1943 25 Oct 1945 No 12 Sqn

No 626 Sqn

From 16 Dec 1943

From 16 Dec 1943


No 15 Base - Scampton,

This was formed on 7 October 1944 at Scampton when No 52 Base was transferred to No 1 Group, beginning operations on 18 October.  It disbanded on 20 October 1945.

Base Commander: - 

 7 Oct 1944                       Vacant

 1 Nov 1944                      A/Cdre G P H Carter

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Scampton

7 Oct 1944 20 Oct 1945 No 153 Sqn

No 625 Sqn

No 1687 BDT Flt

No 1 Group Bomb Handling Training School

From Kirmington, 15 Oct 1944, disbanded 22 Sep 1945

From Kelstern, 5 Apr 1945, disbanded 7 Oct 1945

From Cammeringham, 3 Dec 1944

Formed 2 Mar 1945, moved to North Killingholme, 4 Apr 1945

Sub-station

Dunholme Lodge

7 Oct 1944 18 Jun 1945 No 170 Sqn

No 2799 Sqn RAF Regiment

No 5024 (AC) Sqn

C & M

From Kelstern, 22 Oct 1944, to Hemswell, 29 Nov 1944

From ?, to Hemswell, 9 Dec 1944

From 18 Dec 1944, to Hednesford, 15 Feb 1944

From 1 Dec 1944

Sub-station

Fiskerton

17 Oct 1944 20 Oct 1945 No 150 Sqn

No 576 Sqn

No 2753 Sqn RAF Regiment

From 1 Nov 1944, to Hemswell 22 Nov 1944

From Elsham Wold, 31 Oct 1944, disbanded 19 Sep 1945

From Detling, 18 Dec 1944, to HQBC, 2 Feb 1945

Sub-station

Hemswell

1 Dec 1944 20 Oct 1945 No 150 Sqn

No 170 Sqn

No 2799 Sqn RAF Regiment

No 1687 BDT Flt

From Fiskerton, 22 Nov 1944

From Dunholme Lodge, 29 Nov 1944

From Dunholme Lodge, 9 Dec 1944

From Scampton, 2 Apr 1945

Sub-station

Cammeringham

1 Dec 1944 18 Jun 1945 No 1687 BDT Flt

C & M

No 2733 Sqn RAF Regiment

No 5025 (AC) Sqn

No 5026 (AC) Sqn

To Scampton 3 Dec 1944

From 1 Dec 1944

From Kirton Lindsay, 18 Dec 1944

From 18 Dec 1944, to Hednesford, 15 Feb 1945

From ?, to Hednesford, 15 Feb 1945


No 3 Group

No 31 Base - Stradishall

This was formed at Stradishall, on 26 April 1943 being designated No 31 Base on 16 September1943.  It transferred to No 7 Group as No 73 Base on 1 November 1944.

Base Commanders: - 

xx xxx 1943                        A/Cdre J Silvester

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Stradishall

26 Apr 1943 1 Nov 1944 No 1657 HCU To Shepherd's Grove 14 May 1944, returned 5 Oct 1944
Sub-station

Chedburgh

26 Apr 1943 1 Nov 1944 No 214 Sqn

No 1653 HCU

From 26 Apr 1943, to Downham Market 10 Dec 1942

Formed 21 Nov 1943

Sub-station

Feltwell

26 Apr 1943 7 Aug 1944 No 192 Sqn

No 3 LFS

From 26 Apr 1943, to Foulsham 25 Nov 1943

Formed 21 Nov 1943

Sub-station

Ridgewell

26 Apr 1943 1 Jun 1943 No 90 Sqn From 26 Apr 1943, to Wratting Common 31 May 1943
Sub-station

Waterbeach

26 Apr 1943 25 Aug 1943 No 1651 HCU To Wratting Common, 20 Nov 1943
Sub-station

Wratting Common

30 Apr 1943 1 Nov 1944 No 90 Sqn

No 1651 HCU

From Ridgewell 31 May 1943, to Tuddenham 13 Oct 1943

From Waterbeach, 20 Nov 1943, to Woolfox Lodge, 9 Nov 1943

Sub-station

Shepherd’s Grove

11 May 1943 1 Nov 1944 No 1657 HCU From Stradishall, 14 May 1944, to Stradishall, 5 Oct 1944
Satellite

Birch

31 Jul 1944 1 Nov 1944 no units  
Satellite

Gosfield

Oct 1944 1 Nov 1944 no units  
Satellite

Matching

Oct 1944 1 Nov 1944 no units  

No 32 Base - Mildenhall,

This was formed on 1 March 1943 at Mildenhall, being numbered No 32 on 16 September 1943 and disbanded on 15 November 1945.

Base Commander: - 

xx xxx 1943                        ?

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Mildenhall

24 Mar 1943 15 Nov 1945 No 15 Sqn

No 622 Sqn

From Bourn 14 Apr 1943

Formed 10 Aug 1943, disbanded 15 Aug 1945

Sub-station

East Wretham

24 Mar 1943 7 Aug 1943 No 115 Sqn

No 1678 HCU

From 24 Mar 1943, to Little Snoring 6 Aug 1943

Formed 18 May 1943, to Little Snoring 6 Aug 1943

Sub-station

Lakenheath

24 Mar 1943 1 May 1944 No 149 Sqn

No 199 Sqn

From 24 Mar 1943

From Ingham 21 Jun 1943, to North Creake 1 May 1944

Sub-station

Newmarket

24 Apr 1943 28 Feb 1945 No 75 Sqn

No 1483 Flt

BDU

No 1688 Flt

From 24 Apr 1943

From Marham 29 Jun 1943, disbanded 11 Mar 1944

From Feltwell 13 Sep 1943, to Feltwell 25 Feb 1945

Formed 15 Feb 1944, to Feltwell 25 Feb 1945

Sub-station

Methwold

19 Sep 1943 15 Nov 1945 No 149 Sqn

No 218 Sqn

From Lakenheath 15 May 1944

From Woolfox Lodge 4 Aug 1944, to Chedburgh 5 Dec 1944

Sub-station

Tuddenham

1 Sep 1943 15 Nov 1945 no units  
Satellite

Birch

26 Sep 1945 15 Nov 1945 no units  
Satellite

Gosfield

26 Sep 1945 15 Nov 1945 no units  

No 33 Base - Waterbeach

This was formed on 12 August 1943 at Waterbeach, being numbered No 33 on 16 September 1943 and disbanded on 1 September 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

xx Oct 1943                        A/Cdre O R Gayford

xx Aug 1944                        ?

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Waterbeach

25 Aug 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 1651 HCU

No 1678 HCU

No 514 Sqn

To Wratting Common 20 Nov 1943

From Foulsham 20 Nov 1943

From Foulsham 23 Nov 1943, disbanded 22 Aug 1945

Sub-station

Mepal

25 Aug 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 75 Sqn From Newmarket 28 Jun 1943, to Spilsby 21 Jul 1945
Sub-station

Witchford

25 Aug 1943 1 Sep  1945 No 196 Sqn

No 513 Sqn

No 115 Sqn

No 195 Sqn

From 25 Aug 1943, to Leicester East 18 Nov 1943

Formed 15 Sep 1943, disbanded 21 Nov 1943

From Little Snoring 26 Nov 1943

Formed 1 Oct 1944, to Wratting Common 13 Nov 1944


No 4 Group 

No 41 Base -Marston Moor,

This was formed on 5 March 1943 at Marston Moor, being numbered No 41 on 16 September 1943 but was transferred to No 7 Group as No 74 Base on 7 November 1944.

Base Commanders: - 

24 Mar 1943                      A/Cdre J L Kirby

xx xxx 1944                        A/Cdre C D Adams

xx xxx 1944

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Marston Moor

23 Mar 1943 7 Nov 1944 No 1652 HCU From 23 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Rufforth

23 Mar 1943 7 Nov 1944 No 1663 HCU From 23 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Riccall

23 Mar 1943 7 Nov 1944 No 1658 HCU From 23 Mar 1943
Acaster Malbis 1 Nov 1943 7 Nov 1944   Spare airfield

No 42 Base - Pocklington,

This was formed on 1 March 1943 at Pocklington, being numbered No 42 on 16 September 1943 and disbanded on 1 September 1945.

Base Commander: - 

24 Mar 1943                         A/Cdre G A Walker

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Pocklington

24 Mar 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 102 Sqn From 24 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Elvington

24 Mar 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 77 Sqn

No 346 Sqn

No 347 Sqn

From 24 Mar 1943, to Full Sutton 15 May 1944

Formed 15 May 1944

Formed 20 Jun 1944

Sub-station

Melbourne

24 Mar 1943 15 Apr 1944 No 10 Sqn From 24 Mar 1943, to No 44 Base 15 Apr 1944
Sub-station

Full Sutton

27 Apr 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 77 Sqn From Elvington 15 May 1944, to Broadwell 31 Aug 1945

No 43 Base - Driffield,

This was formed on 6 June 1943 at Driffield, being numbered No 43 on 16 September 1943 and disbanded on 1 September 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

6 Jun 1943                           A/Cdre F W Walker

xx Apr 1944                         A/Cdre J R Whitley

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Driffield

6 Jun 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 466 Sqn

No 462 Sqn

No 426 Sqn

From Leconfield 3 Jun 1944

Reformed 12 Aug 1944

From Linton-on-Ouse 25 May 1945, to Tempsford 25 Jun 1945

Sub-station

Leconfield

6 Jun 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 466 Sqn

No 196 Sqn

No 640 Sqn

No 96 Sqn

No 51 Sqn

From 6 Jun 1943

From 6 Jun 1943, to Witchford 19 Jul 1943

From 7 Jan 1944, disbanded 7 May 1945

Formed 21 Dec 1944, to Cairo West 30 Mar 1945

From Snaith 20 April 1945, to Stradishall 21 Aug 1945

Sub-station

Lissett

6 Jun 1943 1 Sep 1945 No 158 Sqn From 6 Jun 1943, to Stradishall 17 Aug 1945

No 44 Base - Holme-on-Spalding Moor,

This was formed on 15 April 1944 at Holme-on-Spalding Moor and disbanded on 1 September 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

15 Apr 1944                        A/Cdre G S Hodson

19 Oct 1944                        A/Cdre D L Thomson

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Holme-on-Spalding Moor

15 Apr 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 76 Sqn From Linton-on-Ouse 16 Jun 1943, to Broadwell 8 Aug 1945
Sub-station

Melbourne

15 Apr 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 10 Sqn From 15 Apr 1944, to Broadwell 6 Aug 1945
Sub-station

Breighton

15 Apr 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 78 Sqn From Linton-on-Ouse 16 Jun 1943

No 5 Group

No 51 Base - Swinderby,

Prior to the formation of RAF (Conversion) Base, on 5 March 1943 at Morton Hall near Swinderby, there appears to have been a 'Clutch HQ' located a Swinderby.  However, the Base HQ moved to RAF Swinderby on 24 October to enable Morton Hall to become a Group HQ.  On 16 September 1943  it was numbered No 51 but on transfer to No 7 Group on 3 November 1944 it was redesignated No 75 Base .

Base Commanders: - 

xx Nov 1942                        Gp Capt H L Patch ('Clutch HQ')

 1 Feb 1943                          Gp Capt W N McKechnie

15 Mar 1943                        Gp Capt-A/Cdre I E Bussell (A/Cdre from 24 Mar 1943)

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Swinderby

15 Mar 1943 7 Nov 1944 No 1660 HCU From 15 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Barkston Heath

15 Mar 1943 1 Nov 1943 USAAF use  
Sub-station

Winthorpe

15 Mar 1943 3 Nov 1944 No 1661 HCU From 15 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Wigsley

15 Mar 1943 3 Nov 1944 No 1654 HCU From 15 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Syerston

21 Nov 1943 1 Oct 1944 No 1668 HCU

No 5 LFS

From Balderton, 17 Nov 1943, redesignated No 5 LFS, 21 Nov 1943

From 21 Nov 1943

Balderton     No 1668 HCU From 15 Aug 1943, to Syerston 17 Nov 1943

No 52 Base - Scampton,

This was formed in No 5 Group, as RAF Base, Scampton on 10 May 1943, being redesignated No 52 Base on 16 September 1943.  Six days after its formation, one of its units, No 617 Squadron, carried out the spectacular 'Dambusters Raid'.  On 1 September 1943 Scampton closed to flying to allow the laying of runways, its two squadrons having moved to other bases at the end of August, thereby leaving only two squadrons under its control.  This situation was remedied with the arrival of No 619 Squadron from Coningsby.   The Base was disbanded on 2 October 1944 and five days later was transferred to No 1 Group, being redesignated No 15 Base.  On disbandment No 49 Squadron remained at Fiskerton until 16 October, being controlled directly by HQ, No 5 Group until moving to Fulbeck.  The bulk of the Base's personnel was transferred to No 56 Base at Syerston.

Base Commanders: - 

10 May 1943                       A/Cdre J H N Whitworth     

21 Aug 1943                        Gp Capt A D Davies

 4 Dec 1944                         A/Cdre J A Gray

xx xxx 1944                         Gp Capt A D Davies

17 Feb 1944:                       A/Cdre S L G Pope

 

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Scampton

10 May 1943 2 Oct 1944 No 57 Sqn

No 617 Sqn

No 1518 BAT Flt

No 2774 Sqn RAF Regiment

No 2815 Sqn RAF Regiment

Closed for flying*

No 1690 BAT Flt

From 10 May 1943, to East Kirkby, 29 Aug 1943

From 10 May 1943, to Coningsby, 30 Aug 1943

From 10 May 1943, to Edzell 14 Jun 1943

From ?, to Aldershot 1 Feb 1944

From Syerston, 5 Feb 1944

From 1 Sep 1943, re-opened (Day), Jul 1944

From Syerston, Jul 1944, to Metheringham, 27 Sep 1944

Sub-station

Fiskerton

10 May 1943 2 Oct 1944 No 49 Sqn

No 1514 BAT Flt

From 10 May 1943, to Fulbeck, 16 Oct 1944

From Apr 1944

Sub-station

Dunholme Lodge

10 May 1943 2 Oct 1944 No 44 Sqn

No 619 Sqn

From 10 May 1943, to Spilsby, 30Sep 1944

From Coningsby, 17 Apr 1944, to Strubby 28 Sep 1944

*for the laying of runways


No 53 Base - Waddington,

This was formed in No 5 Group, on 14 November 1943 at Waddington and disbanded on 15 November 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

 1 Dec 1943                      A/Cdre A Hesketh

23 Apr 1945                     A/Cdre S L G Pope

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Waddington

14 Nov 1943 15 Nov 1945 No 463 Sqn

No 467 Sqn

No 617 Sqn

From 25 Nov 1943, to Skellingthorpe, 3 Jul 1945

From 14 Nov 1943, to Metheringham, 15 Jun 1945

From Woodhall Spa, 16 Jun 1945

Sub-station

Skellingthorpe

14 Nov 1943 15 Nov 1945 No 50 Sqn

No 61 Sqn

From 14 Nov 1943, to Sturgate, 16 Jun 1945

From 16 Nov 1943, to Coningsby, 12 Jan 1944

Sub-station

Bardney

14 Nov 1943 15 Nov 1945 No 9 Sqn

No 189 Sqn

From 14 Nov 1943, to Waddington, 6 Jul 1945

From  8 Apr 1945, to Metheringham, 15 Oct 1945


No 54 Base - Coningsby,

This was formed in No 5 Group, on 1 January 1944 at Coningsby, but it was three weeks before the first Base Commander arrived, only to leave again after a week on his appointment to command No 91 Group.  The base soon developed a reputation for its units to carry out precision bombing attacks, using No 617 Sqn in a Pathfinder role.  As a result the Base was tasked with acting in the pathfinder role for other units of No 5 Group. With the end of the war in Europe the Base began to prepare for future operations in the Far East, as many of its units and personnel had been earmarked for inclusion in 'Tiger Force'.  However, the end of hostilities in the Far East curtailed these plans and it disbanded on 15 November 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

 1 Jan 1944                     Gp Capt A C Evans-Evans (pending appointment of Base Commander)

22 Jan 1944                    A/Cdre J A Gray

29 Jan 1944                    Gp Capt A C Evans-Evans (Temp)

 9 Feb 1944                    A/Cdre A C H Sharp

xx Sep 1944                    A/Cdre H V Satterly

14 Apr 1945                   Gp Capt W C Sheen (Temp)

23 Apr 1945                   A/Cdre A Hesketh

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Coningsby

1 Jan 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 617 Sqn

No 61 Sqn

No 619 Sqn

No 83 Sqn

No 97 Sqn

From 1 Jan 1944, to Coningsby 9 Jan 1944

From Skellingthorpe, 12 Jan 1944, to Skellingthorpe 15 Apr 1944

From Woodhall Spa, 9 Jan 1944, to Dunholme Lodge, 17 Apr 1944

From Wyton, 18 Apr 1944

From 16 Apr 1944

Sub-station

Woodhall Spa

1 Jan 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 619 Sqn

No 617 Sqn

No 627 Sqn

No 109 Sqn

From 1 Jan 1944, to Coningsby 9 Jan 1944

From Coningsby 9 Jan 1944, to Waddington 17 Jun 1945

From Oakington 15 Apr 1944, redesignated No 109 Sqn 1 Oct 1945

From 1 Oct 1945

Sub-station

Metheringham

1 Jan 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 106 Sqn From 1 Jan 1944

No 55 Base - East Kirkby,

This was formed from RAF Base, East Kirkby (which had probably been formed on 24 November 1943) on 15 April 1944 at East Kirkby with sub-stations at Spilsby and and Strubby.  Between 15 April and mid September 1944 Strubby was loaned to No 16 Group and housed Nos 280, 144 and 404 Sqns.  Following VE-Day units and personnel under the control of the Base began to prepare for inclusion in 'Tiger Force' for service in the Pacific but these plans ended on 17 August following the Japanese capitulation.  The Base disbanded on 15 November 1945.  

Base Commanders: - 

15 Apr 1944                       Gp Capt R T Taafe

xx xxx 1944                        A/Cdre H N Thornton

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

East Kirkby

15 Apr 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 57 Sqn

No 630 Sqn

No 460 Sqn

From 15 Apr 1944

From 15 Nov 1943, disbanded 18 Jul 1945

From 27 Jul 1945

Sub-station

Spilsby

15 Apr 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 207 Sqn

No 44 Sqn

No 75 Sqn

From 15 Apr 1944, to Methwold 30 Oct 1945

From 30 Sep 1944, to Mepal 21 Jul 1945

From Mepal 21 Jul 1945

Sub-station

Strubby

15 Apr 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 619 Sqn

No 227 Sqn

From 28 Sep 1944, to Skellingthorpe 30 Jun 1945

From 5 Apr 1945, to Graveley 8 Jun 1945


No 56 Base - Syerston,

This was formed on 1 October 1944 at Syerston with many of its personnel being transferred from No 52 Base, which was transferred to No 1 Group.  It disbanded on 25 April 1945.

Base Commander: - 

 1 Oct 1944:                       A/Cdre S L G Pope

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Syerston

1 Oct 1944 25 Apr 1945 No 5 LFS

No 49 Sqn

From 1 Oct 1944

From 22 Apr 1945

Sub-station

Fulbeck

1 Oct 1944 25 Apr 1945 No 49 Sqn

No 189 Sqn

From Fiskerton, 16 Oct 1944, to Syerston, 22 Apr 1945

From Bardney, 2 Nov 1944, to Bardney, 8 Apr 1945

Sub-station

Balderton

1 Oct 1944 25 Apr 1945 No 227 Sqn From Bardney, 12 Oct 1944, to Strubby, 5 Apr 1945

No 6 (RCAF) Group

No 61 Base - Topcliffe, 

This was formed on 25 March 1943 at Topcliffe as No 6 (RCAF) Group Training Base, being renamed No 61 Base on 16 September 1943, it was transferred to No 7 Group on 9 November 1944 as No 76 Base.

Base Commanders: - 

 5 Apr 1943                        A/Cdre C M McEwen RCAF

25 Jun 1943                        A/Cdre B F Johnson RCAF

17 Feb 1944                       A/Cdre R E McBurney RCAF

16 May 1944                      A/Cdre F G Wait RCAF

 1 Sep 1944                        A/Cdre J L Hurley RCAF

19 Sep 1944                       A/Cdre F R Miller RCAF

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Topcliffe

25 Mar 1943 9 Nov 1944 No 1659 HCU From 25 Mar 1943
Sub-station

Dishforth

25 Mar 1943 9 Nov 1944 No 1664 HCU Formed 10 May 1943
Sub-station

Dalton

25 Mar 1943 9 Nov 1944 No 424 Sqn

No 428 Sqn

No 1666 HCU

No 1691 Flt

No 1695 Flt

From Leeming 3 May 1943, to North Africa 16 May 1943

From 25 Mar 1943, to Middleton St George 4 Jun 1943

Formed 5 Jun 1943, to Wombleton 21 Oct 1943

Formed 26 Jun 1943, absorbed into No 1695 Flt 15 Feb 1944

Formed 15 Feb 1944

Sub-station

Wombleton

1 Aug 1943 9 Nov 1944 No 1666 HCU

No 1679 HC Flt

From Dalton 21 Oct 1943

From 13 Dec 1943, merged into No 1666 HCU 27 Jan 1944


No 62 Base - Linton on Ouse,

This was formed  18 June 1943 as Linton-on-Ouse Operational Base but was renamed No 62 Base on 16 September 1943.  It disbanded on 14 July 1945, when all it’s units were transferred to Eastern Air Command as part of the proposed ‘Tiger Force’. 

Base Commanders: - 

18 Jun 1943                        A/Cdre C M McEwen RCAF

29 Feb 1944                       A/Cdre A D Ross RCAF

28 Jun 1944                        A/Cdre J E Farquier RCAF

19 Sep 1944                       A/Cdre J L Hurley RCAF

31 May 1945                      A/Cdre J G Kerr RCAF

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Linton-on-Ouse

18 Jun 1943 14 Jul 1945 No 426 Sqn

No 408 Sqn

From Dishforth 18 Jun 1943, to Driffield 25 May 1945

From Leeming 27 Aug 1943, to Canada 14 Jun 1945

Sub-station

East Moor

18 Jun 1943 14 Jul 1945 No 1679 HC Flt

No 415 Sqn

From 18 Jun 1943, to Wombleton 13 Dec 1945

From Bircham Newton 26 Jul 1944, disbanded 15 May 1945

Sub-station

Tholthorpe

18 Jun 1943 14 Jul 1945 No 434 Sqn

No 431 Sqn

No 420 Sqn

No 425 Sqn

Formed 15 Jun 1943, to Croft 11 Dec 1943

From Burn 15 Jul 1943, to Croft 10 Dec 1943

From Dalton 12 Dec 1943, to Canada 12 Jun 1945

From Dishforth 10 Dec 1943, to Canada 13 Jun 1945


No 63 Base - Leeming

This was formed on 1 May 1944 at Leeming and disbanded on 30 August 1945.

Base Commanders: - 

 1 May 1944                       A/Cdre J G Bryans RCAF

13 Jan 1945                        A/Cdre F R Miller RCAF

30 May 1945                      A/Cdre J G Kerr RCAF

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Leeming

1 May 1943 30 Aug 1945 No 427 Sqn

No 429 Sqn

From Croft 5 May 1943

From East Moor 13 Aug 1943

Sub-station

Skipton on Swale

1 May 1944 30 Aug 1945 No 424 Sqn

No 433 Sqn

From 1 May 1944

From 1 May 1944

Sub-station

Dishforth

6 Apr 1945 30 Aug 1945 No 1695 Flt From Dalton 23 Apr 1945

No 64 Base - Middleton St George

This was formed on 1 May 1944 at Middleton St George, disbanding on 14 June 1945, when all it’s units were transferred to Eastern Air Command as part of the proposed ‘Tiger Force’ It controlled the stations at ) and ).

Base Commanders: - 

 1 May 1944                       A/Cdre R E McBurney RCAF

22 Jan 1945                        A/Cdre C R Dunlap RCAF

25 Apr 1945                       A/Cdre H B Godwin RCAF

30 May 1945                      A/Cdre H T Miles RCAF

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

Middleton St George

1 May 1944 14 Jun 1945 No 419 Sqn

No 428 Sqn

From 1 May 1944, to Canada 1 Jun 1945

From Dalton 4 Jun 1943, to Canada 31 May 1945

Sub-station

Croft

1 May 1944 14 Jun 1945 No 431 Sqn

No 434 Sqn

From Tholthorpe 10 Dec 1943, to Canada 7 Jun 1945

From Tholthorpe 11 Dec 1943, to Canada 10 Jun 1945


No 7 Group

No 71 Base - Lindholme

This was formed on 3 November 1944 by redesignating No 11 Base at Lindholme when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units.  From December 1944 the last Halifaxes were retired leaving the HCUs as all Lancaster units.  It disbanded on 15 November 1945

Base Commander: - 

3 Nov 1944                      A/Cdre G G Banting

Station From To Units Notes
Sub-Station

Blyton

 3 Nov 1944  4 Jun 1945 No 1662 HCU No 1662 HCU, disbanded 6 Apr 1945.  Station transferred to direct control of No 7 Group, 4 Jun 1945
Base Station

Lindholme

3 Nov 1944 10 Nov 1945 No 1656 HCU No 1656 HCU, disbanded 10 Nov 1945
Sub-Station

Sandtoft

3 Nov 1944 9 Nov 1945 No 1667 HCU No 1667 HCU, disbanded 9 Nov 1945
Sub-Station

Sturgate

2 Nov 1944 15 Nov 1945 No 1 Air Crew School*

No 1520 BAT Flt

From 2 Nov 1944, transferred to No 1 Group 29 May 1945

From 18 Sep 1944, disbanded 30 May 1945

Sub-Station

Finningley

11 Jun 1945     Operational control of HQ Bomber Command, Admin control of No 71 Base
Satellite

Worksop

11 Jun 1945     Operational control of HQ Bomber Command, Admin control of No 71 Base

*Lodger unit under the control of HQ, No 7 Group


No 72 Base - Bottesford

This was formed on 7 October 1944 at Bottesford when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units and disbanded on 1 April 1945.

Base Commander: - 

xx xxx 1944                        ?

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Bottesford

7 Oct 1944 1 Apr 1945 No 1668 HCU From 7 Oct 1944
Sub-Station

Langer

7 Oct 1944 1 Apr 1945 No 1669 HCU From 7 Oct 1944, disbanded 16 Mar 1945
Sub-Station

Saltby

7 Oct 1944 20 Mar 1945 no units  

No 73 Base - North Luffenham

This was formed on 1 November 1944 by redesignating No 31 Base at Stradishall when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units.  However at the same time the Base was re-located to RAF North Luffenham, with Stradishall (No 1657 HCU) becoming a satellite.  The Base was disbanded on 1 August 1945.

Base Commander: - 

xx Nov 1944                        A/Cdre C D Adams

Station From To Unit Notes
Base Station

North Luffenham

 1 Nov 1944 1 Aug 1945 No 1653 HCU From Chedburgh 27 Nov 1943
Sub-station

Woolfox Lodge

1 Nov 1944 1 Aug 1945 No 1651 HCU From Wratting Common 9 Nov 1944, disbanded 13 Jul 1945
Sub-station

Bottesford

1 Apr 1945 1 Aug 1945 No 1668 HCU From 1 Apr 1945
Sub-station

Langer

1 Apr 1945 1 Aug 1945 No 1669 HCU From 1 Apr 1945, disbanded 16 Mar 1945
Satellite

Stradishall

1 Nov 1944 7 Nov 1944 No 1657 HCU From 1 Nov 1944, disbanded 15 Dec 1944

No 74 Base - Marston Moor

This was formed on 7 November 1944 by redesignating No 41 Base at Marston Moor when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units and disbanded on 10 June 1945.

Base Commander: - 

xx xxx 1944                        ?

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Marston Moor

7 Nov 1944 10 Jun 1945 No 1652 HCU From 7 Nov 1944
Sub-station

Rufforth

7 Nov 1944 10 Jun 1945 No 1663 HCU From 7 Nov 1944, disbanded 28 May 1945
Sub-station

Riccall

7 Nov 1944 10 Jun 1945 No 1658 HCU From 7 Nov 1944, disbanded 13 Apr 1945
Sub-station

Acaster Malbis

7 Nov 1944 10 Jun 1945 no units  
Sub-station

Stradishall

7 Nov 1944 15 Dec 1944 No 1657 HCU From 7 Nov 1944, disbanded and station reverted to No 3 Group on 15 Dec 1944

No 75 Base - Swinderby,

This was formed on 3 November 1944 by redesignating No 51 Base at Swinderby when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units.  In late 1944/early 1945 the HCUs re-equipped from Stirlings to Lancasters, meaning there was no longer any need for No 5 LFS.  No 75 Base disbanded on 1 October 1945

Base Commander: - 

30 Nov 1944                        A/Cdre E I Bussell

 

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Swinderby

 3 Nov 1944 1 Oct 1945 No 1660 HCU From 3 Nov 1944
Sub-station

Winthorpe

 3 Nov 1944 1 Oct 1945 No 1661 HCU From 3 Nov 1944
Sub-station

Wigsley

 3 Nov 1944 1 Oct 1945 No 1654 HCU From 3 Nov 1944

No 76 Base - Topcliffe,

This was formed on 9 November 1944 by redesignating No 61 Base at Topcliffe when No 7 Group took control of all the Bases housing the Heavy Conversion Units and disbanded on 1 September 1945

Base Commanders: - 

 9 Nov 1944                        A/Cdre F R Miller RCAF  

13 Jan 1945                        A/Cdre J G Kerr RCAF  

1 Aug 1945                        A/Cdre N W Timmerman RCAF  

Station From To Unit Notes
Base station

Topcliffe

9 Nov 1944 1 Sep 1945 1659 HCU From 9 Nov 1944
Sub-station

Dalton

9 Nov 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 1695 B (D) Flt From 9 Nov 1944, disbanded 28 Jul 1945
Sub-station

Dishforth

9 Nov 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 1664 HCU From 9 Nov 1944, disbanded 6 Apr 1945
Sub-station

Wombleton

9 Nov 1944 1 Sep 1945 No 1666 HCU From 9 Nov 1944, disbanded 3 Aug 1945

AOCs of unknown bases:

1944 - 1945                        A/Cdre H H Down

Possible Base Commanders?

A/Cdre A McKee (24 Mar 1943)

This page was last updated on 10/04/19

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