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Unit History: RAF Edge Hill

RAF Edge Hill
on 21st October 1941, RAF Edgehill was completed as a satellite airfield for 21 Operational Training Unit (OTU) at Moreton-in-Marsh under Bomber Command, though some Wellington 1c aircraft had been flying out of Edgehill since August.
Airfields are traditionally named after the nearest village, but this airfield was originally named RAF Edgehill rather than RAF Shenington to prevent, despite the different spelling, confusion with another Shennington airfield in Scotland.
Edgehill was built with three hard runways, one 1600 yards long, the others 1200 yards.  As a bomber airfield it was unusual because the western edge of the ground fell away in a scarp face to the valley, hence the reason for the control tower (which still stands among the farm buildings at the north-west end) having an extra floor to aid visibility of the approaching aircraft beyond the ridge.
The first incident involving aircraft based at Edgehill happened only three days after its official opening when a Wellington stalled at 400 feet crashing into Lower Brailes.  The aircraft was destroyed by fire and only the rear gunner survived.  During its active wartime life, many trainee pilots and crew were killed in training around the area.  This is a testament to the difficult weather conditions that cam prevail around the airfield especially in winter - the airfield has reputedly the highest weather related accident record for any RAF base in Britain during World War 2.

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