- RAF Catterick during the Second World War -
If you enjoy this site
please consider making a donation.
Airfields of WW2
Royal Air Force
Prisoners of War
Secrets of WWII
Women at War
Those Who Served
The Great War
How to add Memories
TWMP on Facebook
Can you Answer?
Your Family History
Catterick was a 1st World War Royal Flying Corps Airfield and was one of first military airfields in the world opening in 1914. Training pilots and assisting in the defence of North East England. On formation of the Royal Air Force on 1st April 1918 it became RAF Catterick and 49 Training Depot Station.
RAF Catterick was largely rebuilt in 1935 under the expansion programme with many of the 1920's buildings being cleared away (except the original watch office which still stands). Most of the buildings there today date from this period.
In September 1939 Catterick became a Fighter Sector Station in 13 Group Fighter Command. 609 "White Rose" Squadron, was one of the 9 squadrons of the RAF equipped to fly the famous Spitfire at the out break of war in September 1939. The runway at Catterick was so close to the A1 that traffic had to be stopped to allow Spitfires to take off. During WW2 there were decoy sites protecting this airfield at Low Moor and Birkby
The Sector Ops. Block was replaced in 1943 with a protected operations block identical to those built at other Fighter Sector Airfields.
Until recently Catterick was the headquarters of the RAF Regiment and served as the RAF Fire Service Training School. It is now an Army establishment and the runway is used only for gliding.
Squadrons based at Catterick during the Second World War:
- No. 27 Squadron formed at Catterick on 11th Oct 1927, departed 8th Oct 1939.
- No. 219 Squadron. 4th Oct 1939 to 12 Oct 1940 & 25 Apr 1943 14 May 1945
- No. 609 Squadron from Sept 1939.
- No. 17 Squadron 31st Aug 1941 to November 1941.
8th Oct 1939 Move
April 1940 Re-equipped with Sptfires
28th April 1940 Change of Duty
28th May 1940 Patrols
8th Aug 1940 Defence
3rd Sept 1940 In Action
3rd September 1940 Battle of Britain
23rd February 1941 Move
12th May 1941 Hampden Lost
28th July 1941 On the Move
31st August 1941 Preparation for overseas service
November 1941 Diverted
16th July 1942 Relocated
20th November 1942 On the Move
If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.
Those known to have served at
during the Second World War 1939-1945.
- Blackshaw Dennis Healy. Chief Fire Officer
- Butcher Geoffrey Robert. PO (d.18th May 1941)
- Shipman John.
- Yates Stan.
The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List
The Wartime Memories Project is the original WW1 and WW2 commemoration website.
- To commemorate the 70th anniversary of VE Day, we are launching a new feature, Second World War Day by Day and also a new Library to allow access to records which have previously been held in our offline archive.
- Looking for help with Family History Research? Please read our Family History FAQ's
- The Wartime Memories Project is run by volunteers and this website is funded by donations from our visitors. If the information here has been helpful or you have enjoyed reaching the stories please conside making a donation, no matter how small, would be much appreciated, annually we need to raise enough funds to pay for our web hosting or this site will vanish from the web. In these difficult times current donations are falling far short of this target.If you enjoy this site
please consider making a donation.
- We are also looking for volunteers to help with the website. We currently have a huge backlog of submissions which need to be edited for display online, if you have a good standard of written English, an interest in the two World Wars and a little time to spare online we would appreciate your help. For more information please see our page on Volunteering.
Research your own Family History.
Mar 2017 - Please note we currently have a large backlog of submitted material, our volunteers are working through this as quickly as possible and all names, stories and photos will be added to the site. If you have already submitted a story to the site and your UID reference number is higher than 230777, your information is still in the queue, please do not resubmit without contacting us first.
We are aware of the issue with missing images, this is due to the redesign of the website, images will reappear as soon as the new version of the page is completed, thank you for your patience.
We are now on Facebook. Like this page to receive our updates.
If you have a general question please post it on our Facebook page.
Wanted: Digital copies of Group photographs, Scrapbooks, Autograph books, photo albums, newspaper clippings, letters, postcards and ephemera relating to WW2. We would like to obtain digital copies of any documents or photographs relating to WW2 you may have at home.
If you have any unwanted photographs, documents or items from the First or Second World War, please do not destroy them. The Wartime Memories Project will give them a good home and ensure that they are used for educational purposes.Please get in touch for the postal address, do not sent them to our PO Box as packages are not accepted. World War 1 One ww1 wwII greatwar great
Did you know? We also have a section on The Great War. and a Timecapsule to preserve stories from other conflicts for future generations.
Chief Fire Officer Dennis Healy "Blacky" BlackshawI had a grandad,who passed away 10 years ago, who was based at Catterick during 1946, I think thats what he told me. He was chief fire officer, nickname Blacky. I`m his grandson who misses him everyday. I used to hear his stories about the RAF & just wondered if there`s anyone out there who knew him or got any pics that I could have. Please, I miss him so much. His name was Dennis Blackshaw, lived near Cromer in Norfolk. He had three daughters, Mags, Dianne, Christine & his wife was Ruby.Michael Aldridge
PO Geoffrey Robert Butcher 68 Squadron (d.18th May 1941)My Great-Uncle, Geoff Butcher, was a Pilot Officer with 68 Squadron during WW2. Before the war he won a scholarship to Brasenose College, Oxford; after the outbreak of war he was transferred to Christ Church, Oxford. In July 1940 he volunteered for the RAF, a year before finishing his studies. After training he became a Sergeant Pilot, and at the beginning of 1941 he got his commission as a Pilot Officer. The squadron was based at Catterick during training as a night-fighter squadron. The 1st CO was Spn Ldr DL Clackson, but later replaced by Wg. Cdr Max Aitken, DFC. In April 1941, 68 squadron was made operational and moved to High Ercall Airfield, Staffs. The first casualties occured when Geoff and Sgt. Irwin Harold Wiskar (Czech) were killed on the night of the 17/18 May 1941. They were engaged in local night flying practice in their Bristol Blenheim L8675 when the aircraft stalled at low altitude. Six of their squadron brothers acted as pall-bearers at their funeral. Geoff is buried at Wombridge Church Yard.Rebecca Farr
John Shipman 41 SquadronMy father, John Shipman, flew Spitfires from Catterick in 41 Squadron. His personal recollections are recorded in his book "One of the Few"John Shipman
Stan Yates Sqdn 2816 RAF CatterickI served in Sqdn 2816 at Catterick Camp in 1940. Does anyone remember an explosion there at the railway station round that time?Stan Yates
Available at discounted prices.
The Wartime Memories Project is a non profit organisation run by volunteers.
This website is paid for out of our own pockets, library subscriptions and from donations made by visitors. The popularity of the site means that it is far exceeding available resources.
If you are enjoying the site, please consider making a donation, however small to help with the costs of keeping the site running.
Website © Copyright MCMXCIX - MMXVII
- All Rights Reserved