RAF Kuala Lumpur was an RAF station in the Federation of Malaya and saw extensive use during the Malayan Emergency.
The airfield was also the site of the first civil airport, Sungai Besi Airport, which had a route to London with B.O.A.C using Britannia aircraft. The airport opened in about 1957. Malayan Airways operated Dakota aircraft on domestic flights. The Duke of Gloucester was greeted at the airport by the British High Commissioner in Malaya,Sir Donald Charles MacGillivray,when Malaysia was granted independence ("Merdeka").
The civilian airport was later replaced by Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in 1965.
Sungai Besi Airport was in use as a civilian airport long before 1957, with Malayan Airways Airspeed Consuls and DC3’s flying in and out of the airport from the late 1940s. BOAC Argonauts used the airport in the early 1950s, after the Marsden matting runway and taxi ways were replaced by asphalt. A new terminal building was built in 1957 and this may be the source of confusion as to the date the airport was opened. (This building was demolished around 2004) Qantas started Super Constellation services into the airport in 1958 and BOAC Comets replaced the Britannias in 1959.
Memories of RAF Kuala Lumpur
(Memories written by members of Forces Reunited)
RAF Kuala Lumpur, in 1952
Written by William (Bill) Boggon
Disembarked from troopship(Dilwara) and went to RAF Changi prior to going to K.L. Went to the armoury at Changi to draw rifle and 200 rounds for the overnight train to K.L. A big Flight Sgt.Issued the necessary and after telling me to ’stand fast’ he dismissed the rest of the group. I was marched across to the office,given a mug of tea and a ’wad’ and he then proceeded to tell me my family history. He knew all about my mother and father and my jaw was around my boots when he finally said ’You dont know me do you’, when I replied that I did not he then said,’Well I’m your Godfather’. He had joined the R.A.F. pre war when I was too young to remember him. I only ever saw him once again when I went to Kings House to see him presented with the B.E.M. by Gen. Sir Gerald Templar the High Commisioner. He had sent the invitation and I still have the gold embossed card, but that day is another story.Thank you F/Sgt Percy Laidler.