Unit History: RAF Melton Mowbray

RAF Melton Mowbray
Melton Mowbray opened on August 1st, 1943 and instead of Maintenance Command, was opened under 44 Group, Transport Command. The first unit in was No. 4 Overseas Preparation Unit (OPU) (Spitfire, Mosquito, Corsair, Vengeance, Hellcat, Halifax, amongst others). Later that year (in October), No. 306 Ferry Training Unit (FTU) arrived (Beaufighter, Beaufort) along with 307 FTU (Boston). In 1944, 304 FTU (Beaufort, Beaufighter, Boston, Wellington) and this unit later amalgamated with 306 and 307 FTUs.
In November 1944, both 304 FTU and 4 OPU disbanded but was replaced with 12 Ferry Unit, responsible for ferrying aircraft overseas. Also in November, 107 O T U (Halifax, Dakota plus Horsa and Hadrian gliders) arrived from Leicester, training glider towing and troop transportation. During 1945, 1588 and 1589 Heavy Freight Units (Stirling IV) were formed but moved overseas in October, 1945. In November 1945, 107 O T U disbanded and 12 Ferry Unit departed.
The airfield closed and was reduced to Care & Maintenance until 1958, when it reopened as a satellite for North Luffenham as part of the Thor IRBM system, with 254 Sqn occupying the site. This period ended with the departure of Thor and the station closed. Most of the facilities were dismantled, although until the late 1970s, the surviving dispersed domestic site was used for industry. This had long-since ceased and is now in a state of decay and vandalism.

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