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Historic England Research Records

Shoreham Airport

Hob Uid: 1409742
Location :
West Sussex
Adur
Lancing
Non Civil Parish
Grid Ref : TQ2014405425
Summary : Shoreham is Britain's oldest licensed airport and was also used as a military airfield in both World Wars. Flying began in 1910 and an airport was opened in 1911, then known as Brighton (Shoreham) Airport. It became a centre for civilian flying training, and this capability was adapted for military aviation during World War One, when the airfield was used by the Royal Flying Corps 3 Reserve Squadron. In 1918 it was used for testing of captured German aircraft. In 1925 the airfield was expanded to the south of the nearby railway line, however in 1936 the original airfield site was rebuilt with airport facilities including a terminal building in an art deco style (now a listed building). The redesigned airport was known as Brighton Hove and Worthing Municipal Airport. During World War Two Shoreham became a military airfield once more. Its main role was in air-sea rescue but was also involved in the disastrous Dieppe raid in 1942 and the successful D Day landings in 1944. Blister aircraft hangars and temporary accommodation for personnel were constructed to supplement the existing civilian facilities. In the post-War period there were some doubts as to the future role of the airfield but in 1971 it became a civil airport known as Brighton Hove and Worthing Joint Municipal Airport (Shoreham). Airport facilities were improved and extended in 1998.The structural and earthwork remains of a number of features at the airfield dating from the Second World War were mapped from historical aerial photographs.
More information : Shoreham is Britain's oldest licensed airport and was also used as a military airfield in both World Wars. Flying began in 1910 and an airport was opened in 1911, then known as Brighton (Shoreham) Airport. It became a centre for civilian flying training, this capability was adapted for military aviation during World War One, when the airfield was used by the Royal Flying Corps 3 Reserve Squadron. In 1918 it was used for testing of captured German aircraft. In 1925 the airfield was expanded to the south of the nearby railway line, however in 1936 the original airfield site was rebuilt with airport facilities including a terminal building in an art deco Style. The redesigned airport was known as Brighton Hove and Worthing Municipal Airport. During World War Two Shoreham became a military airfield once more. Its main role was in air-sea rescue but was also involved in the disastrous Dieppe raid in 1942 and the successful D Day landings in 1944. In the Post-War period there were some doubts as to the future role of the airfield but in 1971 it became a civil airport known as Brighton Hove and Worthing Joint Municipal Airport (Shoreham). Airport facilities were improved and extended in 1998. (1-2)

Shoreham Airfield, Sussex, TQ 202 055. In December 1944 the airfield was an operational satellite of Tangmere, part of 11 Group Fighter Command. In addition to the permanent civilian facilities there were four Blister aircraft hangars and temporary accommodation for personnel. (3)

The Defence of Britain database briefly records the former RAF Shoreham at TQ 203 055. (4)

A number of WWII military structures associated with the airfield - including pillboxes, air raid shelters, fences, bomb craters and camouflaging were recorded and mapped from historical aerial photographs as part of the English Heritage: South Downs NMP project. (5)

For a detailed description of the site including photographs and a plan of the site please refer to this source. (6)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Archive : the quarterly journal for British industrial and transport history
Source details :
Page(s) : Feb-17
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 35, 2002
Source Number : 2
Source : Archive : the quarterly journal for British industrial and transport history
Source details :
Page(s) : 55-64
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 36, 2002
Source Number : 3
Source : Military airfields in the British Isles 1939-1945
Source details :
Page(s) : 173
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4
Source : Migrated Defence of Britain Project database record originally compiled from various sources
Source details : The two databases developed by the Project can be searched on-line through the Archaeology Data Service at http://ads.ahds.ac.uk/catalogue/specColl/dob/index.cfm
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 5
Source : Vertical aerial photograph reference number
Source details :
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 6
Source : THE MILITARY AIRFIELDS OF BRITAIN; SOUTHERN ENGLAND, KENT, HAMPSHIRE, SURREY AND SUSSEX
Source details :
Page(s) : 210-213
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Flying began 1910
Monument End Date : 1910
Monument Start Date : 1910
Monument Type : Airfield
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Airport opened 1911
Monument End Date : 1911
Monument Start Date : 1911
Monument Type : Airport
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Expanded 1925
Monument End Date : 1925
Monument Start Date : 1925
Monument Type : Airfield
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Rebuilt 1936
Monument End Date : 1936
Monument Start Date : 1936
Monument Type : Airport
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Rebuilt 1971
Monument End Date : 1971
Monument Start Date : 1971
Monument Type : Civil Airport
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Additions 1998
Monument End Date : 1998
Monument Start Date : 1998
Monument Type : Civil Airport
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : First World War
Display Date : World War I use
Monument End Date : 1918
Monument Start Date : 1914
Monument Type : Airfield, Military Airfield
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Second World War
Display Date : World War II use
Monument End Date : 1945
Monument Start Date : 1939
Monument Type : Airfield, Military Airfield, Blister Aircraft Hangar
Evidence : Structure, Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Second World War
Display Date : Dieppe 1942
Monument End Date : 1942
Monument Start Date : 1942
Monument Type : Military Airfield
Evidence : Structure
Monument Period Name : Second World War
Display Date : D Day
Monument End Date : 1944
Monument Start Date : 1944
Monument Type : Military Airfield
Evidence : Structure

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Defence of Britain Database UID
External Cross Reference Number : S0004431
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : DoB Anti Invasion Database UID
External Cross Reference Number : S0004431
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : DoB Non Anti Invasion Database UID
External Cross Reference Number : 5574
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TQ 20 NW 97
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1447268
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1409758
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1424021
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1417977
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447656
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1422010
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447268
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447311
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447370
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447374
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1422043
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447386
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447391
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447392
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447394
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447399
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1447403
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1459996
Relationship type :

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, THE DEFENCE OF BRITAIN PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 1995-04-01
End Date : 2002-03-01
Associated Activities : Primary, ENGLISH HERITAGE: SOUTH DOWNS PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 2005-01-01
End Date : 2011-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, NHPP: WORLD WAR II TEMPORARY AIRFIELDS
Activity type : THEMATIC SURVEY
Start Date : 2012-01-01
End Date : 2012-12-31