HeritageGateway - Home
Site Map
Text size: A A A
You are here: Home > > > > Historic England research records Result
Historic England research recordsPrintable version | About Historic England research records

Historic England Research Records

Raf Digby

Hob Uid: 1393727
Location :
Lincolnshire
North Kesteven
Scopwick, Ashby De La Launde and Bloxholm
Grid Ref : TF0420057000
Summary : A military airfield opened in 1918 (then known as RAF Scopwick) originally with Belfast truss aircraft hangars, which were later replaced. The airfield was reconstructed in 1937. The airfield was also used during World War Two, mainly as a training and fighter base. During the Battle of Britain it was part of 12 Group RAF Fighter Command and functioned as a Sector Airfield with a sector Operations room and staff. During the war It was also home to Numbers 2 and three Flying Training Schools and the famous airmen Guy Gibson (later of of the "dambusters" Squadron) and Douglas Bader were stationed at Digby. In 1942 the base became a Royal Canadian Air Force Squadron operating Mosquito aircraft. Later the airfield was used by a technical training Unit. The wartime airfield had grass landing surfaces, two type C aircraft hangars and 10 blister aircraft hangars. There was permanent accomodation for base personnel. From 1955 it became the home of Signals Units numbers 591 and 399. In 1998 it was redesignated The Joint Service Signals Unit with British and US personnel from all three sevices working together at the base. It remains a military base though the airfield is no longer used for flying. The base also hosts the RAF Digby Sector Operations Room Museum (please see record 1393731).
More information : RAF Digby opened in 1918 (then known as RAF Scopwick) and used during World War Two, mainly as a training and fighter base. It was home to Numbers 2 and three Flying Training Schools. Guy Gibson and Douglas Bader were stationed at Digby. In 1942 the base became a Royal Canadian Air Force Squadron operating Mosquito aircraft. Later the airfield was used by a technical training Unit. From 1955 it became the home of Signals Units numbers 591 and 399. In 1998 it was redesignated The Joint Service Signals Unit with British and US personnel from all three sevices working together at the base. (1)

Digby airfield, Linclonshire, TF 042 570. Opened in 1918. During WWII it was the Sector airfield for 12 group. The airfield was equipped with grass landing surfaces, two type C aircraft hangars and 10 blister aircraft hangars of 2 different variants. There was permanent accomodation for personnel. As of 01-DEC-1944 these numbered 1950 men and 540 women. An accompanying sketch plan of the base shows a cluster of buildings and structures in the south east corner. (2)

Airfield TF 042 570 (NAT). OS sheet TF 04 NW shows the position of the airfield but (presumably then for security reasons) does not depict any of the buildings. (3)

RAF Digby airfield, TF 042 570, WWII airfield. The NGR given by the Defence of Britain Database concords with sources 2-3. (4)

RAF Digby, formerly RAF Scopwick. Additional reference: Bowyer's updated volume in the "Action Stations" series includes a detailed history of the airfield with reference to squadrons and types of aircraft flown from the airfield. It also notes that in 1918 there were some Belfast Truss type hangars on the site, that were later replaced by the type C hangars and Blister hangars. (5)

Reconstruction work took place at RAF Digby in 1937. (6)

RAF Digby was a Sector Airfield During the Battle of Britain in 1940, it was provided wit ha Sector Operations Room and staff. During the Battle the folowing stations were based there: No 46 Squadron from 13th June 1940, No. 29 Squadron from 27th June 1940. No. 46 Squadron from 19th August 1940, No. 151 Squadron from 1st September 1940, No. 611 Squadron from 10th October 1940(?*) [*The RAF website gives 1939 as the year but presumably since it focuses on the Battle of Britain, 1940 is meant] (7)




Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : World Wide Web page
Source details : MoD. Crown copyright 2003. "RAF Stations: RAF Digby"; http://www.raf.mod.uk/stations/den_base.html; last updated 07-APR-2003. Accessed 01-MAR-2004.
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : Military airfields in the British Isles 1939-1945
Source details :
Page(s) : 66
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : 1:10000, 1956
Page(s) :
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 : 6
Source : British military airfield architecture : from airships to the jet age
Source details :
Page(s) : 19
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 7
Source : World Wide Web page
Source details : Royal Air Force, Crown Copyright 2005. 'Battle of Britain: 12 Group' <> [Accessed 03-AUG-2010]
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number :
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Bowyer MJF, 2000: "Action Stations Revisited: The complete History of Britain's Military Airfields", No 1 Eastern England, pp144-145.
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Post war from 1955
Monument End Date :
Monument Start Date : 1955
Monument Type : Military Base
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : First World War
Display Date : Opened 1918
Monument End Date : 1918
Monument Start Date : 1918
Monument Type : Military Airfield, Belfast Truss Aircraft Hangar
Evidence : Documentary Evidence, Demolished Building
Monument Period Name : Second World War
Display Date : Operational in WWII
Monument End Date : 1945
Monument Start Date : 1939
Monument Type : Military Airfield, Military Training Site, Blister Aircraft Hangar, Aircraft Hangar (Type C)
Evidence : Structure, Documentary Evidence

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Defence of Britain Database UID
External Cross Reference Number : S0004024
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : DoB Anti Invasion Database UID
External Cross Reference Number : S0004024
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TF 05 NW 17
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1464370
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1464374
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 1393731
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1393739
Relationship type :
Associated Monuments : 1419461
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