Halesworth was constructed in 1942-1943. Initially planned as a bomber airfield, its location close to the Suffolk coast meant that it was in an ideal position to operate escort fighters, where range was a critical factor. Consequently, the 56th Fighter Group with their P-47 Thunderbolts moved in - one of the most successful Fighter Groups in the USAAF. In April 1944 the fighters were replaced with the B-24 Liberators of the 489th Bomb Group, who occupied the airfield until November. The 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron occupied Halesworth from January 1945, equipped with P-47 Thunderbolts, CA-10 Catalinas and lifeboat-equipped B-17s. The airfield was also briefly used as a training base for P-51 pilots before the end of the war in Europe. The Royal Navy took over Halesworth in August 1945, using it as a training base, before it was closed for flying in early 1946. It was sold in 1963.
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The 489th Bomb Group flew B-24 Liberators out of Halesworth, Suffolk, for several months from May 1944 until later in the year. The Group flew tactical missions in support of ground forces in northern France. It was in this tactical role that the crews...
Flying P-47 Thunderbolts throughout their time stationed in England, the Group, known as "the Wolfpack", had more ace pilots than any other Eighth Air Force Fighter Group. The 56th Fighter Group also destroyed more enemy aircraft in air combat than any...
Goxhill had been a fighter training base since 1942 but it was only in December 1943 that a Fighter Training Group was established there. Pilots who had received the basic training in the USA would practise ETO operational procedures and gunnery before...
Browse 18th Weather Squadron photographs and other documents in the 2nd Air Division Memorial Library digital archive here: www.2ndair.org.uk/digitalarchive/Dashboard/Index/60
Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 389th Bomb Group
Killed in Action (KIA) at Krefeld in B-24 Win, My Little Lady #4295088. The 9 man crew bailed at around 2200 feet altitude over Sevelen, Germany while trying to reach allied lines around 15 miles NW of Krefeld. 8 of the crew were captured. Tzolag was...
Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 489th Bomb Group
B-24H #42-94888 'Special Delivery II' collided with another B-24 on return from a mission to Kassel. KOM
Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 495th Fighter Training Group
Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Baled out during navigation mission when visual contact with leader was lost in overcast in P47 41-6401 Returned to Duty RTD. 31-Dec-43. Transferred to 495FTG 8AF USAAF.
Military | Second Lieutenant | Bomber pilot | 489th Bomb Group
Assigned to 844BS, 489BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) mission to Mainz, Germany. Mid air collision with B-24 42-94913, both A/C fell out of the sky. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 9636. Awards: PH.
Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 78th Fighter Group
Assigned to 82FS, 78FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 83FS, 78FG 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron. End of War. Awards: WWII Victory.
Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 4th Fighter Group
Assigned to 63FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th ERS. Transferred to 334FS, 4FG, 8AF USAAF.
Military | Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner | 489th Bomb Group
Assigned to 844BS, 489BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) mission to Mainz, Germany. Mid air collision with B-24 42-94913, both A/C fell out of the sky. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 9636. Awards: AM, PH.
Military | Sergeant | Bombardier, Enlisted, Nose Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
Prisoner of War (POW) crashed at Krefeld on 19 Feb 45 in B-24 'Win, Our Little Lady' #4295088
Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
Assigned to 62FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th ERS. Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.
Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron. Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.
B-24 Heaven Can Wait #4128832 shot down by flak and crashed at Ursen on 6/29/44, 10 POWs.
P-47C-2-RE 41-6199 was assigned to the 56FG/63FS at Halesworth, UK. On 27-Sep-43 the aircraft, piloted by 1LT Harry P. Dugas, was despatched to provide withdrawl support for B-17 formations retunring from attacking Emden, Germany. The aircraft was...
P-47C-RE 41-6232 was assigned to the 56FG/61FS at Halesworth, UK. On 3 Sep-43 the aircraft, piloted by 1LT Hiram O. Bevins, was struck by ground fire while the pilot was reportedly "flying on the deck" returning from a bomber escort mission. 1LT Bevins...
On 8-Oct-43 P-47C 41-6268, 56FG/63FS piloted by, 2LT Dover C. Fleming Jr., was shot down over Holland while escorting B-17s attacking at Bremen, Germany. The aircraft crashed into the Ijsselmer near Amsterdam, Holland. 1KIA MACR 939.
P-47C-5-RE was assigned to the 56FG/63FS at Halesworth, UK. On 2 Sep-43 the aircraft was piloted by 1LT Wilfred A. Van Able and despatched to escort bombers. The flight was attacked by German fighters near Armentierres, France and 1LT Van Able was shot...
P-47C-5-RE 41-6587 was assigned to the 4FG/334FS at Debden UK. On 3-Nov-43 the aircraft, piloted by 1LT Ivan R. Moon, took off from Halesworth as a more forward location and was despatched with other fighters from 4FG to provide escort to B-17s...
P-47D-6-RE 42-74626 was assigned to 56FG/62FS at Halesworth, UK on 11-Nov-43 the aircraft, piloted by 2LT Malcolm Van Meter, was depatched with others from the Gruop to provide withdrawl support of B-17 formations attacking at Munster, Germany. 2LT Van...
P-47D-6-RE 42-74722 was assigned to 56FG/63FS at Halesworth, UK. On 11-Nov-43 the aircraft, piloted by 1LT Wayne J O'Conner, was despatched with others from the 56FG to escort B-17 formations attacking at Munster, Germany. The aircraft was last see...
Encountered mechanical failure on an escort and support mission for bombers on a mission to Soligen, Germany, 30 November 1943. The pilot, Lt William D. Grosvenor managed to regain control of his P-47 and strafed a train above Puurs, Belgium. Flying...
P-47D-1-RE was assigned to the 56th Fighter Group/62nd Fighter Squadron at Halesworth, UK. It was asssigned to 1LT Voorhis H. Day and was shot down by Germany fighters on 17-Aug-43 while being flown by 1LT Day on a missionto provide fighter escrot to...
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Barry Anderson, Army Air Forces Stations (Alabama, 1985) / Roger Freeman, Airfields of the Eighth Then And Now (London, 1978)
Roger Freeman, Mighty Eighth War Manual (London, 2001)
Michael Bowyer, Action Stations 1: Wartime Military Airfields of East Anglia 1939-1945 (Cambridge, 1979)