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Historic England Research Records

Manby Airfield

Hob Uid: 1402569
Location :
Lincolnshire
East Lindsey
Legbourne, Little Carlton, Grimoldby, Manby
Grid Ref : TF3890086800
Summary : The site of a former military airfield opened in 1938. It was used in World War Two and post-war until 1974. Construction began on the site in 1936, and the formal layout of the buildings reflects the consultation between the Air Ministry and the Royal Fine Arts Commission that took place in the 1930s. From 1938 and during World War Two the special function of the airfield was as a base for Number 1 Air Armament School (from 1944 Empire Central Armament School) which was concerned with training in air gunnery (and bomb aiming) skills. The actual ranges for these activities were at Theddlethorpe. At some time during the war concrete runways were added.In 1949 the Royal Air Force Flying College (later renamed the College of Air Warfare) was formed at Manby. In the 1960s a new control tower and signals square were built, superseding the earlier pre-war tower. The airfield retains a large number of its original pre-war domestic buildings many designed in a Neo-Georgian style by the Air Ministry architect Bulloch as well as a number of the original aircraft hangars (please see TF 38 NE 60 to TF 38 NE 68). Some of the surviving technical buildings include workshops, a guardhouse and a parachute store.
More information : Manby Airfield, Lincolnshire TF 385 866. Opened 1938, closed 1974. The airfield had concrete runways and was provided with Type C hangars and Blister variant aircraft hangars. Accommodation was permanent. (1)

Construction began on the site in 1936. From 1938 and during World War Two the special function of the airfield was as a base for Number 1 Air Armament School (from 1944 Empire Central Armament School) which was concerned with training in air gunnery skills. In 1949 the Royal Air Force Flying College (later renamed the College of Air Warfare) was formed at Manby. In the 1960s a new control tower and signals square were built. (2)

The former RAF station at Manby Airfield was described in 2003 as ranking jointly with Hullavington (Wiltshire) as being the "most complete and architecturally unified of the post -1934 Expansion Period". It retains a large number of its original pre-war buildings many designed in a Neo-Georgian style by the Air Ministry architect Bulloch as well as a number of the original aircraft hangars. The overall formal layout of the buildings reflects the fact that it was a formal training setting and also the consultations that took part between the Royal Fine Arts Commission and the Air Ministry in the 1930s. During the war the airfield specialized in training bomb aimers, air gunners and armourers. The actual ranges were at Theddlethorpe. A dummy airfield to draw off enemy attacks was situated at Mablethorpe. At some time during the war "paved" runways were added at Manby. (3)

Airfield centred at TF 385 866 (NAT). The bulk of the flying field and the airfield buildings are in Manby Civil Parish, however hard standings and dispersals extend into Grimoldby to the north, Little Carlton to the south and Legbourne to the west. (4)

The site was the nodal point in the late 50's all the 60's and part 70's for the coding and dissemination of 5 figure weather forecasts for stations throughout the UK north of Coventry as far as Saxa Fford in the Shetlands. (5)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Military airfields in the British Isles 1939-1945
Source details :
Page(s) : 134
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : Airfield review
Source details :
Page(s) : 24-29
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 73, 1996
Source Number : 3
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : English Heritage Thematic Listing Programme, May 2003: "Survey of Military Aviation Sites and Structures Summary Report", Annexe 1, unpaged.
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : 1:10000, 1979
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 5
Source : Oral information, correspondence (not archived) or staff comments
Source details : Email correspondence 03-JAN-2015
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Construction began1936
Monument End Date : 1936
Monument Start Date : 1936
Monument Type : Military Airfield, Workshop, Guardhouse, Parachute Store
Evidence : Structure, Extant Building
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Opened 1938
Monument End Date : 1938
Monument Start Date : 1938
Monument Type : Military Airfield
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : World War II
Monument End Date : 1945
Monument Start Date : 1939
Monument Type : Military Airfield, Runway
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Additions 1960s
Monument End Date : 1969
Monument Start Date : 1960
Monument Type : Control Tower, Signal Square
Evidence : Extant Building, Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Closed 1974
Monument End Date : 1974
Monument Start Date : 1974
Monument Type : Military Airfield
Evidence : Structure

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TF 38 NE 59
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1466181
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1464303
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1464311
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1464314
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1402604
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402608
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402617
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402591
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402628
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402673
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1402676
Relationship type :

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, LAND AT 2 PROVOST ROAD
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 2007-01-01
End Date : 2007-12-31