Unit History: RN Air Station St Mawgan
Trebelzue ’Big Field’ airfield first opened as a grass civil airfield in the mid 1930s.
Requisitioned by the Air Ministry at the outbreak of WW2 the airfield was rebuilt with two runways in 1940/41 and reopened 09/41.
1942 - 1943, 400 Sqn Mustangs and 264 Sqn Mosquitoes on anti-shipping patrols.
Due to short runways, crosswinds and very bad weather conditions it was decided to rebuild the airfield further inland in 1942/43. Trebelzue airfield was incorporated as a dispersal area of the new airfield which became St Mawgan on 24/02/43. At this time its 32/14 runway (300ft) was the widest in Europe, and by the end of extension work 05/44, one of the longest at 9000ft.
From mid 1943 the airfield became one of the busiest in Europe, with large USAAF and USN aircraft coming over from the USA to be prepared for combat in Europe.
1943 - 1945, 491st Base and Air Base Squadron, Air Transport Command, USAAF with B-17 and B-24
1943 - 1945: RAF Ferry Command operated its various types (mainly Warwicks) to and from Europe and North Africa, BOAC also operated its air routes from here. After VE day St Mawgan became unused and was placed under ’Care & Maintenance’ 07/47.
1951: Airfield reopened as a Coastal Command airfield with Lancasters until 10/56, (the last Lancasters in RAF service), Shackletons then the dominant type until replaced in 1971 by Nimrods. These left by 1991 and this move saw the demise of the airfield as a major fixed wing base.
Sea King helicopters kept St Mawgan going, but are due to move in 2008, this will see the airfield transferred from military to civilian operations.
Civilian flying here post-war and from the early 1960s a small terminal has operated from the north side of the airfield.