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[576 Squadron RAF]
[Airfields]
[RAF Fiskerton]
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RAF Fiskerton

 The Lincolnshire village of Fiskerton,  5 miles east of Lincoln, was chosen as the site for one of many new bomber airfields built in the early part of the war.  The airfield was situated north of the village and of a standard bomber base pattern with 3 concrete runways and surrounding perimeter track with 36 hardstands for aircraft. The technical site was at the south east of the airfield with 3 hangers. Living accommodation was provided for a maximum of 2,016 males and 297 females and was dispersed on sites mainly to the south east of the airfield.

 The airfield was opened in January 1943 as part of 5 Group, Bomber Command as 52 Sub-Base Station controlled by Scampton, HQ 52 Base.

 On the 19th January 1943 49 Squadron of 5 Group moved in with their Lancasters and commenced operations soon after. In January 1944 No 1514 Beam Approach Flight operated Airspeed Oxfords from the airfield until they were disbanded one year later.

 Fiskerton was closed to operations from the 10th September 1944 to the 24th October 1944 whilst the runways were resurfaced and the airfield was equipped with FIDO, a fog dispersal system. This worked by burning vaporised petrol which ran along pipes either side of the runway. The flames and heat generated were quite effective in dispersing fog and improving visibility for some distance and height enabling aircraft to land in bad weather conditions. 15 airfields in the UK were fitted with this system and many hundreds of successful landings were made in what would have otherwise been very difficult circumstances.

 49 Squadron departed on the 17th October 1944 and Fiskerton was briefly put on a care and maintenance basis and transferred to 1 Group.

 On the 31st October 1944 576 Squadron moved from Elsham Wolds to Fiskerton and were joined  the next day by 150 Squadron which had been reformed after previous service in Italy. 150 Squadron enjoyed only a short stay moving to Hemswell on the 11th November 1944. 576 Squadron continued to operate from the airfield until the end of the war and were disbanded there in the September 1945.

 Fiskerton was reduced to a care and maintenance basis in December 1945. In 1961 a small section of the site was occupied by the Royal Observer Corps. An underground bunker was built and this became the head quarters of 15 Group ROC and it remained in use until the ROC were disbanded in 1991. The remainder of the old airfield returned to agriculture.

 Very little remains of the old airfield now. Small parts of the concrete runway can be found and a few buildings survive. There is a memorial to 49 Squadron and 576 Squadron on the side of the road near the old main runway.

For more detailed information regarding RAF Fiskerton refer to the excellent RAF Fiskerton website here

Item written by David Fell

 

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