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DRIFFIELD AIRFIELD

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A former military airfield, now Alamein army barracks and millitary training site. The airfield was first used during the first World War in an Anti Zeppelin role. A landing strip was established near Eastburn Farm in 1916 and a 25 acre technical site to the north of the A614 was built in 1918, along with a range of domestic airfield buildings. In 1920 this reverted to agricultural use and the site was demolished. Because of the renewed threat to peace from the mid 1930s, Driffield was reacvtivated and reconstructed from 1935 onwards. The base was opened in 1936 but construction continued after this date (finished by 1940). Huts served as temporary buildings until the permanent buildings were complete. The completed station included mess facilities, H barrack blocks, a range of stores, garages, workshops and station headquarters, and 5 type C aircraft hangars. The technical site and barracks were located on the south east side of the flying field. There were bomb stores to the north of the flying field. For much of World War Two the base was used by Bomber Command, except for an interval in the winter of 1941 when it was taken over temporarily by Fighter Command. Driffield saw action in the northern sector of the Battle of Britain and was attacked repeatedly in 1940. Post war use included flying training, and from 1958 to 1963 the north west corner of the site was remodelled as a Thor missile site. In 1977 the base was handed to the army, who use the site as a barracks and training area for cross country driving courses. The latter function meant the landscaping of part of the former flying field and the former Thor missile site, most of which were buried. Some of the airfield perimeter track remains. A number of wartime specialist buildings were incorporated into the barracks and were reported as extant in 1999 (please see TA 05 NW 75 to TA 05 NW 79). Four of the type C aircraft hangars are in use as grain stores.

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