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RAF Fairlop in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

The Wartime Memories Project

- RAF Fairlop during the Second World War -

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RAF Fairlop

   RAF Fairlop was first used during the First World War as a Royal Naval Air Station Training School. A small flying club used the site between the wars and there were plans to build a commercial airport, but these were later abandoned.

The airfield was brought back into military use in late 1940 when three concrete runways in the familiar "A" pattern were constructed. The Airfield became operational in September 1941 with the arrival of No: 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron, flying spitfires, previously stationed at Hornchurch. Hainault Lodge was used as accommodation for some of the officers. In June 1944 RAF Fairlop became home to No. 24 Balloon Centre with four squadrons forming part of the balloon barrage around London. The balloons were manned by members of the WAAF. No 24 Balloon Centre was disbanded in February 1945 and the airfield closed in August 1946.

The site was used for gravel extraction and became a country park known as Fairlop Waters with sailing facilities and a golf course.

Squadrons stationed at RAF Fairlop

  • No: 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron
  • No: 64 Squadron
  • No: 81 Squadron
  • No: 411 Squadron
  • No: 313 Squadron
  • No: 122 Squadron
  • No: 182 Squadron
  • No: 247 Squadron
  • No: 164 Squadron
  • No. 24 Balloon Centre


8th September 1942  Relocated

 New territory

18th May 1943  Tactical Airforce

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

Those known to have served at

RAF Fairlop

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.

Sydney Whitcombe DFC. 195 Squadron

My father Sydney Whitcombe did not talk much about his experiences of his service in the RAF. He was a navigator for the 195 Squadron and received the DFC for his bravery.

Interestingly enough he was at first a conscientious objector when war broke out, later joining the RAF having spent most of the initial years dragging bodies from bombed buildings in London. I have a photograph of him and some of his crew with their names but would love to find out more about anyone connected to the 195 squadron and any other photographs.

The names of the crew members were: Frank Wilcock (wireless operator) Len Parsons (bomber) ‘Paddy’ (air gunner) Stan Renaut (air gunner)

Sally Childs

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