Explored with Winch It In
This wasn’t the main objective of the day (a list of ROC Posts were) and I’m not big on WW2 Defences but it would have been rude to drive past this so we stopped for a quick nosey.
Site: RAF Market Harborough.
Opened – 1943
Closed – 1947
Units stationed at RAF Market Harborough:
No 1683 (Bomber) Defence Training Flt (3 Feb – 1 Aug 1944)
No 92 Group (1944)
No 26 Air Crew Holding Unit (21 Aug 1945 – 18 Sep 1946)
No 113 Storage Sub-site, No 273 Maintenance Unit (Feb 1946 – 5 Oct 1949)
RAF Market Harborough was mainly used as an Operational Training Unit throughout it’s active days with No. 14 OTU flying Vickers Wellingtons, Airspeed AS.10 Oxfords, Hawker Hurricanes and some Curtiss P-40 Tomahawks from No.1683 Bomber Defence Training Flight.
Today very little of the main airfield survives as a lot of the site has now been demolished to make way for a Business Park.
The control tower and all of the technical site was demolished to make way for HMP Gartree which opened in 1965.
The Battle Headquarters is a TYPE 11008/41, the room layout is pretty much the same
in all of these and this has the usual OP, Main Office, PBX Room, Messenger Room and Toilet.
Some internal fittings remain and despite the farmers attempt at burying the HQ all rooms are still accessible, as are the hatches, albeit with some ‘interesting’ floor levels. The main Escape Hatch still has an intact ladder with a clear entry to the main rooms and the other escape hatch is also still open but partially buried. The wooden door to the Elsan Chemical toilet is still in place too.
Despite evidence of some flooding the entire Battle HQ was damp but free of standing water.