|RAF Elsham Wolds (Elsham landing ground)|
Updated: 6 Dec 12
Opened: Dec 1916
Closed : Jun 1919
Opened: Jul 1941
Airfield code :: QS, RU > ES
ICAO Code ::
Airfield call sign :: SHOPBOY, HAZEL (Apr 1943)
Squadrons based here:
C Flt 33 Sqn :: Dec 1916 - Jun 1919
576 Sqn :: Nov 1943 - Oct 1944
100 Sqn :: 1 Apr 1945 - Dec 1945
103 Conversion Flight :: 22
Apr 1942 - 7 Oct 1942
21 HGCU :: Dec 1945 - Nov 1946
103 Squadron Conversion Flight :: May 1942 - Oct 1943 Halifax Mk II equipped, absorbed into 1656 HCU in Oct 1942 (RAF Breighton)
Elsham was first used from Dec 1916 to Jun 1919 by C Flight of 33 Sqn RFC equipped with FE2b and FE2d. The Sqn was deployed to 3 bases between Hull and Lincoln to counter nighttime Zeppelin raids into the Midlands. Flying operations ended in Jun 18? and site was cleared by Oct 1919.
The former airfield site was surveyed in 1939 and found to be suitable for the construction of a new bomber base. An important factor in this decision was access to the rail network via nearby Barnetby. WWII offensive operations commenced with 103 Sqn's first night time sortie on 24 Jul 1941. RAF Elsham Wolds was protected by night bombing decoy Q sites at South Ferriby to the north and Great Limber to the south-east.
The airfield closed in 1947 and its site is now bisected by the A15 dual carriageway from south to north.
576 Sqn formed here from C Flt, 103 Sqn in Nov 1943 before moving to RAF Fiskerton in Oct 1944. RAF Elsham Wolds is commemorated in a memorial stone in the grounds of the Anglian Water treatment works. See "A Brief History of the RAF in Lincolnshire" :: website. The relevant page is linked directly in the column to the right of this page.
21 Heavy Glider Conversion Unit was equipped with the Halifax Mk VII, Albermarle tugs and Horsa gliders and was stationed here from Dec 1945 to Nov 1946.
The RAF Elsham Wolds
website has a comprehensive and fascinating collection approximately
40 aircrew biographies and stories from World War II which put a fascinating
human dimension on the history of the station and 103 Sqn and 576 Sqn: click
RAF Elsham Wolds museum. There is also a small museum at the treatment works.
The Memorial Rooms and Garden are viewable only by prior appointment,
due to security issues on the site. Contact details are on our
the Association n web site under
The Viking Way long-distance footpath skirts the perimiter of the former airfield site to the north-east.
RAF Elsham Wolds Memorial
RAF Elsham Wolds page on RAF website
RAF Elshan Wolds memories on the Wartime Memories Project
RAF Elsham Wolds on ControlTowers.co.uk
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