RAF-Lincolnshire.info - the home of Royal Air Force and airfield history in Lincolnshire, including allied and other air services.

 

RAF Digby - RCAF Digby
A history : 1934-1936


Home
RAF Stations & Bases
Full list of locations
Squadrons and Units
A brief history
Aircraft types
Forum
Photographs
Memorials
Crashes
Sqn & Stn Associations
Museums
Maps
Oral History
Books
Search site
Links
Sitemap
Abbreviations
People Finder
Family history & research
About the site
FAQs
Contact us
Copyright
Updates

> RAF Bases

Interactive map
Full list of locations

Alma Park
Anwick
Bardney
Barkston Heath
Belton Park
Binbrook
Blankney Hall
Blyton
Boston Wyberton Fen
Bottesford
Bracebridge Heath
Braceby
Buckminster
Bucknall
Caistor
Cockthorne
Coleby Grange
Coningsby
Cranwell
Cuxwold
Digby
Donna Nook
Dunholme Lodge
East Halton
East Kirkby
Elsham Wolds
Faldingworth
Fiskerton
Folkingham
Freiston
Fulbeck
Gosberton
Goxhill
Grantham
Greenland Top
Grimsby
Grimsthorpe Park
Harlaxton
Hemswell
Hibaldstow
Holbeach
Humberston
Immingham
Ingham
Ingoldmels
Kelstern
Killingholme
Kirmington
Kirton in Lindsey
Langtoft
Leadenham
Lincoln West Common
Ludford Magna
Manby
Market Deeping
Market Stainton
Mere
Metheringham
Moorby
Morton Hall
New Holland
Nocton Hall
Normanby
North Coates
North Killingholme
North Witham
Norton Disney
Orby
Rauceby
Saltby
Sandtoft
Scampton
Skegness
Skellingthorpe
Skendleby
South Carlton
South Elkington
South Witham
Spilsby
Spitalgate
Stenigot
Strubby
Sturgate
Sutton Bridge
Swinderby
Swinstead
Theddlethorpe
Tydd St Mary
Waddington
Wainfleet
Waltham (Grimsby)
Wellingore
Wickenby
Wigsley
Winterton
Woodhall Spa

Updated: 14 Jan 12

1934

Ten months after closing in Dec 1933 and handing over the Station to RAF Cranwell, No 2 Flying Training School re-started under Squadron Leader G H Cock. It was equipped with AVRO Tutors, Hawker Harts and Furies. After 2 months Squadron Leader Cock handed over to Group Captain T Leigh-Mallory, who was later to become Air Chief Marshal Sir Trafford Leigh-Mallory.

One of Digby’s unique distinctions is that an aircraft was built in Station Workshops. Known as the Digby Flying Flea it was built by Squadron Leader C R Davidson.

1935-1936 : Reconstruction, Expansion

The physical appearance of the Station underwent a drastic change in 1935/36. The 7 original hangars, which had stood where the Barrack Blocks now stand, were replaced by 2 new ones. Originally, it had been planned to have a third one standing between them. However, the close proximity of war put a stop to the building programme and the third hangar was never built. Domestic building, including married quarters, also went on, and many of the present-day buildings appeared at this time.

The Station archive includes a variety of photographs reflecting the recontruction of the airfield. The most (in)famous of these is an aerial view of the station showing the old type 21 hangars still standing with the modern Type C hangards under construction behind them. In the foreground of the image there appears to be a flight of 3 Hawker Fury aircraft but these 2FTS aircraft have in fact been superimposed on the basic shot from the air!

Also in 1936 a scheme to train civil pilots was started at Digby. Rumour has it that some ladies were trained, but very little is now known about this scheme.

The CO at this time, Group Captain Robinson, was an ADC to the King. This involved him in having to ride a horse at some parade in London. For weeks beforehand, early every morning he rode up and down between the hangars whilst airmen hanged tins and waved rags on sticks to acclimatize the animal to the excited crowds. The day before the event, the horse fell ill, so the preparations were in vain! Nevertheless, the great day apparently passed off without problems for anyone other than the poor horse.

1936 Sports

These distractions seem to have no appreciable effect on the sporting life of the Station, for during 1936, the inter-unit rugby Cup and the inter-unit junior fencing cup were both won by Digby. The rugby strength of the Station was no doubt helped by the fact that at the time there was on the unit a Flight Lieutenant C Beamish, whose brother went on to win many international cups for Ireland at rugby, and rose to be an air marshal. On their way to the final, the Digby team apparently played Cranwell. So certain were Cranwell of their forthcoming victory, that they had booked a Vickers Valencia to fly the team to the next leg at Leuchars in Fife. Beamish made himself very unpopular by asking if the aircraft would be used by the Digby team instead.

Construction of 12 Group Fighter Command Lima Sector Operations Room

The budget for building the Sector Ops Room bunker was a princely £5000.

< 1933 | index | 1937 >

location of RAF Digbyin relation to Lincolnshire - click here for full-size map showing all station locations

Digby Squadrons

Blankney

Ashby de la Launde

Scopwick War Graves

Sector Ops Room Museum

Digby crashes

Digby Oral Histories:


Digby - A History
" A history 1917 - 1978"
Foreword
Introduction
1917
1918
Inter-War Years
1919
1920
1922-23
1924
1925
1926

1927-1929
1930-1932
1933
1934-1936
1937
1938
World War II

1939
1939-1940
1941
Jan - Aug 1942
Sep 1942 - 1944
1945
Return to Training
1945 - Jan 1948
Feb - Mar 1948
Mar 1948 - 1953
A cadet remembers
The Signals Era
Jan 1955 - Dec 1961
Dec 1963 - 1978
Curent Day

1955 - the Signals Era


Digby Ops Room Museum
A brief history on Airops website

Buy the local map:
click to buy on Amazon.co.uk1:25 000 (detail)
click to buy on Amazon.co.uk1:50 000 (area)

Aviation Heritage Lincolnshire
(Tourism)

Follow RAF Lincolnshire:
Visit RAF-Lincolnshire.info's facebook page. Like our page and stay up to date with our posts on facebook! Follow us on twitter and stay up to date with our frequent news items

Amazon.co.uk & Amazon.com

 

Google+

powered by blueconsultancy