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RAF Hullavington Gliding School in 1946

RAF Hullavington Gliding School in 1946

In 1935 the goverment purchased Bell Farm from a Mr F J Huntley, some of his farm buildings, now listed, still stand today in the centre of the military base.

Building started in 1936 as part of the RAF Expansion Scheme. As part of this scheme buildings were designed by modern architects and made to fit into their surroundings using local materials.

Hullavington became an airfield on the 9th July 1937 when No 9 Flying Training School (FTS) arrived with their Hawker Harts. The following year, 1938, an Hullavington also became an Aircraft Storage Unit and No 9 Maintenance Unit arrived. This became No 10 MU in 1939 and by the end of the war they had over 1000 aircraft on their books but not all of these were at Hullavington.

No 9 Service Flying Training School arrived, with Avro Anson Trainers, on 03 Sep 1939 and were stationed at Hullavington until 14 Feb 1942. Aircraft would take off and fly to Babdown Farm, do their training and fly back to Hullavington before it got dark. By 1941 56 Miles Masters were used as a more advanced trainer with 16 Hurricanes on charge.

On the 1st April 1942 a new unit, the Empire Central Flying School (ECFS), was formed at Hullavington. In November 1943 you would find the following aircraft of the ECFS lined up on the airfield:

De Havilland Mosquito, Hawker Typhoon, Supermarine Spitfire, Percival Proctor, Grumman Avenger, Hawker Hurricane, Miles Master, Avro Anson, Airspeed Oxford, De Havilland Tiger Moth, Avro Lancaster, Miles Magister, Vickers Wellington, Douglas Boston, North American Mitchell, Short Stirling and a GAL Hotspur glider.

Hullavington was used for Gliding as far back at September 1947 with No 88 Gliding School stationed on the airfield until May 1948.

In 1993 the site was handed over to the Army’s 9 Supply Regiment Royal Logistic Corps and has been renamed Buckley Barracks after the VC winner John Buckley.

The airfield is still active with both 621VGS and 625VGS operating from the airfield.

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