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Military site : airfield

An RAF station which in 1944 was home to Douglas C-47 Skytrain lodgers.

Detailed history

Not yet known

English Heritage's record description

A former civil airfield and military airfield, now partly a museum. Hendon's long association with aviation began in 1909 when Everett and Edgecombe built an aeroplane in a shed on Colindale Avenue. In 1910-1911 the site was developed as a civilian airfield used by aviation pioneers such as Louis Bleriot and Claude Graham-White. Nothing survives of the original airfield. The latter bought the land and promoted it as London's Aerdrome establishing a Bristol Aeroplane Company Flying School, later assembling Grahame-White Aviation Company aircraft in a factory there. Remains of the Grahame-White's World War One factory, part of a World War One military airfield comprise a former watch office, control tower, former aircraft factory and office built in 1915. The Royal Air Force Officers' Mess, formerly the "London Aerodrome Hotel" was built in 1917. By that year the airfield had become a Royal Flying Corps Aircraft Acceptance Park. The majority of buildings from this phase are built of brick. After World War One the government retained the airfield with ownership formally passing to the Royal Air Force in 1925. During World War Two the airfield was mainly used for transport purposes by the allies because of its good road and rail links, although it was also used by the heavily engaged 11 Group Royal Air Force in the Battle of Britain. During the war the airfield was repeatedly attacked, including hits by V1 "flying bombs" on the hospital, barracks and Womens Auxilliary Air Force quarters. After the war there was a reduction military activity at the site, with part of the site being sold for housing in 1968. The RAF station closed between 1987-1988 but the Royal Air Force Museum (opened 1972) continues to use part of the site: it physically incorporates three early aircraft hangars into its structure. In 1993 a number of military buildings at the former East Camp were demolished.



  • 18th Weather Squadron

    18th Weather Squadron

    Browse 18th Weather Squadron photographs and other documents in the 2nd Air Division Memorial Library digital archive here:

  • Weather Detachment 575


  • Peter Beasley

    Military | Colonel | Chief of Supply
    Beasley was one of 6 staff officers to accompany General Eaker to England in February 1942. He was commissioned into the military after working as an executive of Lockheed Aircraft Company. ...

  • William Cowart

    Military | Colonel | Tactician
    Cowart was one of 6 staff officers to accompany Eaker to England in February 1942. ...

  • Herbert Elkins

    Military | Sergeant | Postal clerk | 27th Air Transport Group
    Elkins was Dishonourably Discharged from the USAAF on 16 September 1943 and sentenced to 2 years hard labour for embezzling $1229.40 while working in the Postal Exchange at Hendon between 15 October 1942 and 18 January 1943

  • Loren Hillsinger

    Military | Colonel | Pilot | 61st Troop Carrier Group
    Colonel Lorin B Hillsinger was the first USAAF officer permitted to return to operational flying after losing a limb. ...

  • Harris Hull

    Military | Brigadier General | Combat Intelligence Officer
    Hull was one of 6 Staff Officers to accompany General Eaker to England in February 1942. ...


  • P3757

    18th Aug 1940 F/O Hartland de Montarville Molson [Montreal, Quebec], slightly injured in landing accident at RAF Station Hornchurch, Essex in Hurricane Mk I P3757 coded YO*G. ...

  • V6844

    Hawker Hurricane Mk I V6844 flown by VIII Air Force Service Command Pilot, Col L B Hillsinger, Lt Col L.B. Hillsinger was badly wounded as an observer onboard the destroyer HMS Berkeley sunk during the Dieppe Raid on Aug 19, 1942. ...

  • X7522

    De Havilland DH89 Dominie X7522, impressed into RAF service, one of 6 Dominies transferred to the 8th AF USAAF. ...

  • X7403

    De Havilland DH89 Dominie X7403, impressed into RAF service, one of 6 Dominies transferred to the 8th AF USAAF. ...

  • DE774

    Tiger Moth
    de Havilland Tiger Moth DE774, assigned to HQ Sqn, VIII AFSC, 8AF USAAF. To Royal Pakistan Air Force (RPAF). Registered in Pakistan as AP-AHQ for Government of Pakistan. On loan to Peshawar Flying Club (PFC), Peshawar. Registration AP-AHQ removed from...

  • DL778

    Miles Master DL778, assigned to VIII Air Force Service Command, 8AF USAAF.

  • 42-96282

    B-26 Marauder
    Assigned to 450BS, 322BG, 9AF USAAF. Crashed RAF Hendon 27-Jul-44 and written off. Salvaged Jul-44.


Date Contributor Update
03 September 2019 11:37:21 Emily Changes to english heritage description

Historic England National Monument Record TQ 29 SW 24

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:02:16 AAM AAM ingest

Barry Anderson, Army Air Forces Stations (Alabama, 1985) / Bruce Barrymore Halpenny, Action Stations 8: Military Airfields of reater London (Wellingborough, 1984)