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RAF Grantham / RAF Spitalgate in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

The Wartime Memories Project

- RAF Grantham / RAF Spitalgate during the Second World War -

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RAF Grantham / RAF Spitalgate

   RAF Grantham opened in November 1916. The site is often confused with RAF Grantham at St Vincents House which housed Headquarters 5 Group between 1937 and 1943. In 1944 The airfield was renamed RAF Spitalgate.

Flying continued between the wars and at the outbreak of the Second World War RAF Grantham was home to No: 12 Flying Training School and continued as a training base throughout the war. A tradition which continued until 1975 when the airfield closed. Today the site is home to the Royal Logistics Corps Territorial Army Centre, Grantham

Squadrons stationed at RAF Grantham / RAF Spitalgate

  • No: 12 Flying Training School. 1939 to April 1942
  • No: 12 (Pilots) AFU 1 Apr 1942 to 8 Feb 1945
  • HQ 5 Gp Comms Flt 1938 to 14 Nov 1943
  • 1536 Beam Approach Trg Flt. Mar 1943 to May 1945
  • 17 SFTS. Mar 1945


If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.

Those known to have served at

RAF Grantham / RAF Spitalgate

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

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

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Did you know? We also have a section on The Great War. and a Timecapsule to preserve stories from other conflicts for future generations.

Sgt. George Stanley Barclay 166 Squadron

NZ413369 Sergeant Pilot George Barclay on graduation in Canada 27th of March 1942

New Zealander, Sergeant Pilot George Barclay joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force on 15th June 1941 and began his flying training in Tiger Moths at New Plymouth, New Zealand, on 6th September 1941. He left Auckland, NZ on 17th November 1941 on the SS Monterey and arrived in San Francisco on 5th December 1941. He then travelled by train to RCAF Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada where he joined No 44 Pilots course on 5th December 1941 to complete his flying training on Cessna Crane aircraft at No 4 SFTS. He arrived in UK on 13th May 1942 and joined Number 16 Course of 12 (P) Advanced Flying Unit (AFU) at RAF Grantham on 21st July 1942 where he flew Oxford Mk1 aircraft. The AFU course was completed on 15th September 1942 at which time he was posted to No 43 Course of 16 OTU at RAF Upper Heyford to fly the Wellington medium bomber. Having completed his training at 16 OTU on 23rd December 1942, he was posted to the Home Echelon of 150 Squadron to fly Wellingtons operationally from RAF Kirmington, Lincs, on 12th January 1943. In turn, the Home Echelon of 150 Squadron merged with the remains of 142 Squadron to form 166 Squadron on 27th January 1943. George flew with 166 Squadron until he baled out over Mezerolles, NW France, after an 'Op' on Duisburg on the night of 8th/9th of April 1943. He was a POW until escaping on 6th April 1945 and returned to UK on 17th of April 1945. George married a London girl on 16th of June 1945 and returned to New Zealand to raise a family. He turned 93 on 2nd May 2016.

Jim Barclay

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