Early in 1941 the Government purchased over 200 acres of Warwickshire farmland 6 miles East of Stratford Upon Avon and it was designated as RAF Wellesbourne Mountford, the base of No.22 Operational Training Unit until the close of the war in 1945. No. 22 OTU was equipped with Vickers Wellington bombers supplemented by Avro Anson navigational trainers.
On 14th April 1941 No. 22 OTU was formed.
The airfield was attacked from the air four times during May 1941.
In 1942 Wellesbourne aircraft were used in the 1,000 bomber raids on Germany.
During the war period Wellesbourne lost 96 Wellingtons in operational and training accidents. 80 airmen were injured and 315 killed. These comprised of 243 Canadians, 59 RAF, 9 New Zealand, 2 Belgian, 1 Australian and 1 WAAF.
On 25th July 1945 22 OTU was closed after having trained over 9000 airmen.
At the end of July 1945 No. 3 Glider Training School moved in to train glider pilots for war in the Far East. After Japan’s surrender this was closed and moved out in 1947
In Spring 1948 the airfield became a base for the School of Photography utilizing Avro Ansons, staying until 1964.
By 1950 No.9 Oxfords arrived for advanced flying training, these departing in 1954.
The airfield was also host to the Airfield Construction Unit from 1951-1964 and the School of Education from 1950-1952
Wellesbourne was closed in 1964
Memories of RAF Wellesbourne Mountford
(Memories written by members of Forces Reunited)
RAF Wellesbourne Mountford, in 2009
Written by Brian Mann
Re visited Wellesbourne, The airfield is used for private flying, clubs,pilot training and museum etc. The old campsite is now private housing estate, the hangers area is now an industrial estate. The airfield buildings are on the oposite side. Good to go back, had a short flight in light aircraft to complete the experience.
RAF Wellesbourne Mountford, in 1956
Written by Brian Mann
At the Air Day in 1956 a good crowd was anxiously awaiting the highlight of the flying display which was US Sabre Jets display team - they never did arrive, they performed over another airfield probably Gaydon and then buggered off.
I was reminded of this on a recent visit to Wellesbourne. In the Cafe on the airfield they have a poster of the 1956 Air Day.
We urks spent the rest of the day clearing litter from the field, happy days!