MONA AIRFIELD;HENEGLWYS AIRFIELD, GWALCHMAI

Site Details



NPRN
308390
Map Reference
SH47NW
Grid Reference
SH415760
Unitary (Local) Authority
Isle of Anglesey
Old County
Anglesey
Community
Bodffordd
Type of Site
AIRFIELD
Broad Class
Defence
Period
Modern;20th Century

Site Description

The construction of Mona airfield was complete by the summer of 1942 and included the redevelopment of the former mooring area for airships from the First World War. Three T-type hangers were built on the old airship mooring areas and a further 17 blister type hangers around the perimeter track. The concrete runways were originally laid in 1943. The main runway was lengthened to 1828m (6000ft) in the 1950s for use by jet aircraft, and the two others withdrawn. The tower is the original building modified with a large picture window. All of the blister hangars have been removed, and only 1 of the T-type hangars remains.

Event and Historical Information:
During the First World War, the airfield was an airship station and was called Llangefni (see NPRN 407782). The station had been further developed by the summer of 1942 and opened on the 1 December 1942 controlled by RAF Training Command. The base was to be used for 6 Air Gunnery School (AGS) but this unit failed to form and 3 AGS was transferred to Mona in December with 48 Blackburn Bothas, 8 Miles Martinets and 6 Fairy Battles which were used for target towing. These aircraft were replaced Avro Ansons before the unit returned to Castle Kennedy in October 1943. In the spring of 1943, a Fight of Masters came to Mona from 5 Pilots Advanced Flying Unit (P AFU), Tern Hill, to train Turkish officers. 8 Obeservers Advanced Flying Unit (O AFU) equipped with Ansons arrived in November 1943 and stayed until disbanded on 14 June 1945. Towards the end of the war, the number of staff was 1378 RAF and 408 WAAF (110 RAF and 8 WAAF officers, 220 RAF and 10 WAAF NCOs, 1048 RAF and 390 WAAF of other ranks). At the end of the war, the airfield was placed on care and maintenance. It re-opened on 26 July 1951 as a relief landing ground for Vampires from 202 Advanced Flying School (AFS) operating from RAF Valley.

Sources include:
Defence of Britain Project
Jones, I, 2008, Airifields and Landing Grounds of Wales: North, pg96-103
Phillips, Alan, 2006, Military Airfields Wales, pg 151-4
Sloan, Roy, 1991, Wings of War over Gwynedd, pg62-78
Smith, David J, 1982, Action Stations 3: Military Airfields of Wales and the North West, pg 124-5

RCAHMW, June 2008.

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