Situated to the South of the A30, midway between Sherborne and Shaftesbury, the airfield is easy to miss from the ground, but has been the focus of much aviation activity since it’s construction began in 1941.
The airfield was built over a period of two years, and commissioned, in 1943, as HMS Dipper, and No 2 Naval Air Fighter School moved in from Yeovilton.
The airfield had five runways, one of which - 07/25 - was equipped with a reinforced concrete ‘Dummy Deck’ with arrester wires to permit deck landing training to be carried out.
Seafire and Spitfire pilots, in the main, trained here during the war although many other types are recorded as having visited, or been based here.
Between 1946 and ’53, the airfield was a relief landing ground for Yeovilton, with Fireflys and Seafurys as frequent visitors.
Bristow Helicopters spent time here in the ‘50’s co-habiting with Yeovilton when, between 1954, and 1957, they again used the airfield as a satellite landing ground.
The airfield itself was later sold and became a general aviation airfield, with a population in the region of about 16 light and executive machines. The Wessex Strut [contingent] of the PFA [Popular Flying Association] has held an annual fly-in at the airfield almost without interruption since the 1970's.
Through the 80's and early 90's, the airfield operated from the North side of the runway overseen by Tony Young, who runs 'Aircraft Coverings Limited' an aircraft paint and fabric coverings business.
During this period Keith Pierson, the then land-owner, fought for planning permission to establish an 'Airpark' at the airfield. After a long battle this fell through but, undismayed, he refurbished the surviving runway 07/25 and set up an airfield office/Ops/Clubhouse to the South of the runway from which operations are now conducted.
Joe Williams now owns and manages this operation, which remains the haunt of the PFA Wessex Strut, and the airfield has acquired a reputation as a friendly and efficient field with a warm welcome and good food for visiting pilots and their passengers.
Images and information placed above are from http://www.henstridge.flyer.co.uk/
We thank them for the data!
37.5 Nautical Miles, Bearing 278° from SAM VOR (113.35)
56.0 Nautical Miles, Bearing 057° from BHD VOR (112.70)
56.0 Nautical Miles, Bearing 149° from BCN VOR (117.45)
4.5 Nautical Miles South South East of Wincanton
127.35 - Yeovilton Approach (LARS)
124.75 - London Information
Airfield situated close to Yeoviltion MATZ panhandle, please call Yeoviltion APP on 127.35 ). Runway 07/25 can be identified by the Concrete "dummy deck" in the middle. All other runways are unusable.
Warnings: Keep a good lookout for high speed Military aircraft and high intensity helicopter operations associated with Yeoviltion.
Caution: Power cables 20ft agl cross 07 final approach 230 m from the threshold. There is a fence 50m from the 07 threshold.
Runway-in-use signal displayed in the signals square.Fuel and Oil:
All fuel and oil types are available and the current prices are as listed below (inclusive of VAT).
The content above was published at Airports-Worldwide.com in 2005.
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