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Weston Zoyland

Military site : airfield

First used in 1926 as a grass airfield Landing Ground for Anti-Aircraft Co-operation summer camps, Weston Zoyland became an RAF station in 1940. It was used as a training base for Army Co-Operation squadrons from 1941, and as an Armament Practice Camp from 1943. The station was developed in 1943 to become a transport base, with three concrete runways, 33 loop plus two extra-large pan hardstandings, and three T2 plus one Bellman, one Bessoneau and nine blister hangars. Made available to the Ninth Air Force in early 1944, extra PSP hardstandings were added to the ends of the main runway. Vacated by the RAF in April 1944, the 442nd Troup Carrier Group, equipped with C-47s, occupied the station from June to October 1944. Re-occupied by the RAF from November 1944, the station was reduced to Care and Maintenance in 1947 but was re-opened for flying from 1952 to 1958. Closed in 1969, after the A372 had been routed along much of the main runway, most of the site has since returned to agriculture. Part of the airfield remains in use by microlights and by the Sky Watch Civil Air Patrol.

Detailed history

Not yet known

English Heritage's record description

A former Pre-War and World War Two military airfield. It opened in 1926 and for the next 10 years it was used as summer practice camp for night flying training and anti-aircraft cooperation. The seasonal accommodation at this stage was a tented military camp. The wartime airfield had some limited temporary buildings but the increase in personnel meant that many were billeted in surrounding villages and country houses. During the war the main task of the airfield was Army Cooperation and armaments practice. The airfield was upgraded in 1943 and 1944 so that by the latter year the airfield had three concrete runways and a range of aircraft hangars including Type T2, Bellman and Blister designs. In 1944 the airfield was transferred to the United States Army Air Force 442nd Troop Carrier Group who participated in the D Day assault. The airfield then returned to the RAF (Fighter Command) but was closed in 1946. It reopened between 1952-1958. After 1969 it was disposed of by the Air Ministry. The airfield is used for agricultural purposes and as an industrial estate. The control tower and some other wartime buildings are thought to be extant.

Service

Aircraft

  • LZ676

    Proctor
    Failed to return to Weston Zoyland from a test flight on 21 August 1944. Wreckage from the Proctor was found the next day on a beach near Watchet, Somerset.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
03 September 2019 13:41:46 Emily Changes to english heritage description
Sources

Historic England National Monument Record ST 33 SE 46

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 Eighth Then And Now (London, 1978)

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

http://www.ukcivilairpatrol.co.uk/index.html

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