Skip to main content
Edit entry 

Westhampnett

Military site : airfield

Acquired in 1938 as an Emergency Landing Ground for RAF Tangmere, Westhampnett was upgraded to satellite status in 1940. It had eventually three grass runways, 19 pan hardstandings, 32 small pens, and one T1 plus eight over-blister hangars. Occupied by RAF fighter squadrons until July 1942, it had been allocated to the Eighth Air Force in June 1942 and became the main home in July 1942 of the 31st Fighter Group, equipped with Spitfire Vs. Transferred to the Ninth Air Force in September 1942, that Group moved to North Africa in October 1942, after which P-38s of the 14th Fighter Group briefly used Westhampnett as a forward operating base. Again occupied by RAF fighter squadrons from November 1942, the station was re-allocated to the Eighth Air Force in July 1943, and transferred to the Ninth Air Force in October 1943, but was never again used by American squadrons. Closed in 1946, the airfield site was redeveloped to become in 1948 the Goodwood Motor Racing Circuit, which closed in 1966. It was also redeveloped from 1958 to become the present-day Chichester Goodwood Airfield with two grass runways.

Service

Units

  • 31st Fighter Group

    31st Fighter Group

    Group
    The 31st Fighter Group only flew missions from England between June and September 1942 but during this period they supported the Dieppe raid, the assault on occupied Europe, predominantly by the Canadian army. The attack was forced into early retreat...

People

  • John Felton

    Military | Flight Officer | Fighter pilot | 31st Fighter Group
    Joined RCAF 1940, Assigned to 185 Sqn RAF Malta defense. 50 missions. Credited 1 x Ju88 Strait of Messina. Transferred USAAF, assigned to 309FS, 31FG, 15AF USAAF. Credited 1 x destroyed. Spitfires and P-51 Mustangs. Ended Tour Duty (ETD). ...

  • Jerome Juhnke

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter pilot | 31st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 309FS, 31FG, 12AF. Shot down east of El Guettar in plane assigned to Lt Leonard Houston Meldeau, coded WZ-O. This was the third time he had been shot down, but this time his parachute (Meldeau's) failed to open. Juhnke assigned plane at...

  • James Thorsen

    Military | Lieutenant Colonel | Fighter Pilot/Squadron Commander | 31st Fighter Group
    CO 308th FS first and third combat tours HQ 350th FG second combat tour CO 79th FG post War Germany Spitfire Mk VIII HL+B "Nightshade" P-51D HL+B "Nightshade IV" 3 air kills plus 1 ME-262 damaged

Aircraft

  • EN909

    Spitfire
    Supermarine Spitfire EN909 Mk Vb, Built at Chattis Hill. ...

  • BM635

    Spitfire
    Supermarine Spitfire BM635 Mk Vb, Built at Castle Bromwich Aircraft Factory. ...

  • EP179 'Mary James'

    Spitfire
    Supermarine Spitfire Mk Vb EP179 Built at Castle Bromwich Aircraft Factory. ...

  • EN838

    Spitfire
    Supermarine Spitfire EN838 Mk Vb, Built at Castle Bromwich Aircraft Factory. ...

Revisions

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

Barry Anderson, Army Air Forces Stations (Alabama, 1985) / Roger Freeman, Airfields of the Ninth Then and Now (London, 1994)

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

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_Westhampnett

http://ukga.com/airfield/chichester-goodwood

http://www.key.aero/view_article.asp?ID=6002

Share