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Military site : airfield

Built during 1940-41 as a fighter base satellite for RAF Middle Wallop, Ibsley opened in 1941 when incomplete. It eventually had three concrete runways, 18 hardstandings plus 18 double pen dispersals, and two Bellman plus 12 blister hangars, after enlargement during 1943. Allocated to the Eighth Air Force as a fighter station, its first US occupants were the 71st and 94th Squadrons of the 1st Fighter Group, equipped with P-38s, from August to October 1942. Re-allocated to the Ninth Air Force as a tactical fighter base, the 48th Fighter Group, equipped with P-47s, arrived in March 1944, and was joined temporarily by the 371st Fighter Group, also equipped with P-47s, during April-May 1944. The 14th Liaison Squadron, equipped with L-5s and UC-78s, joined the 48th Fighter Group briefly during June-July 1944, until both moved to France. They were replaced at Ibsley until the end of July 1944 by the 367th Fighter Group, equipped with P-38s, which also moved to France. Handed back to the RAF in August 1944, flying ceased in 1946 and the station closed in 1952, after which the airfield quickly returned to agriculture. The runways were removed in the 1960s, and the site was purchased by Amey Roadstone in the early 1970s for aggregate exploitation. By the early 1990s, much of the site had become a series of gravel pits and large landscaped lakes, although several wartime buildings and structures survive to date, including the Control Tower and Battle Headquarters.




  • Laurence Blumer

    Military | Major | Fighter pilot | 357th Fighter Group
    Five German Luftwaffe airplanes during World War II were shot down in less than 15 minutes by one pilot who was born and raised in North Dakota. Because of this, Larry "Scrappy" Blumer earned the title Fastest Ace in the West. For his actions during...

  • Donald Engel

    Military | Flying Officer | Fighter pilot | 48th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 492FS, 48FG, 9AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) armoured column cover to Urbach, Germany in P-47 42-8445 Killed in Action (KIA) 21-Nov-44. MACR 15880/10581

  • Wood Hibbard

    Military | Private | Fire Fighter
    PVT Hibbard was killed in action, 27 May 1944 following the explosion of a 1000 lb bomb attached to a burning aircraft. ...

  • Norman Johnson

    Military | Flight Lieutenant | Fighter pilot | 48th Fighter Group
    Flew combat in the Aleutians campaign, for outstanding service over Kiska, he was awarded the air medal by General Butler. After a period of leave he was assigned to 492FS, 48FG, 9AF USAAF in Jan-44. Shot down while flying interdiction near the...

  • George Pullis

    Military | Captain | Fighter Pilot | 48th Fighter Group
    George Pullis flew over 120 combat missions with the 48th Fighter Group. He scored one recorded victory on 8 April 1945. He did have to bale out on 22 March 1945 but made it safely back to base at St Trond, Belgium. ...

  • Charles Young

    Military | Brigadier General | Pilot / Commanding Officer | 367th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 367FG, 9AF USAAF. C/O of 367FG, 9AF USAAF. ETD Awards: DFC (OLC), SS, BS, AM (8OLC), WWII Victory, EAME, American campaign, OCC, Korean and UN medals. Post War: Retired in January 1963 as a Brigadier General.

  • Homer Young

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 48th Fighter Group
    Enlisting and training ...


  • 42-8445

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 354FS, 355FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 492FS, 48FG, 9AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) armoured column cover to Urbach, Germany pilot F/O Donald R Engel Killed in Action (KIA) 21-Nov-44. MACR 15880/10581

  • W8959

    Miles Master W8959, assigned to 71st Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, 8th AF USAAF.

  • W8853

    Miles Master W8853, assigned to 37BS, 17BG, 12th AF USAAF.

  • X7186

    Airspeed Oxford X7186, assigned to 493rd Fighter Squadron, 48th Fighter Group, 9AF USAAF.


Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:02:17 AAM AAM ingest

Barry Anderson, Army Air Forces Stations (Alabama, 1985) / Roger Freeman, Airfields of the Eighth Then And Now (London, 1978)

Roger Freeman, Airfields of the Ninth Then and Now (London, 1994)

Chris Ashworth, Action Stations 5: Military Airfields of the South-West (London, 1982)