Mission Aviation Fellowship

RAF Henlow under threat

The MOD has announced plans to close a number of airfields in order for them to be turned into housing developments. Amongst the airfields earmarked for re-development is the historic RAF Henlow in Bedfordshire.


Home to several non-flying RAF units, as well as the civilian Henlow Flying Club and a number of privately-owned aircraft, including several rare vintage machines, RAF Henlow has been operational since 1918. The original ‘Belfast’ hangars from this period, now grade II listed, are still used by the resident aircraft.

Although the official press release mentions specifically the golf course on the airfield, it is believed locally that the entire airfield is under threat. This is despite the number of protected ‘listed’ buildings on the site and a disclosure in 2015 that the airfield site may be contaminated with radiation, possibly from radium used on luminous instrument dials and other aircraft equipment in the 1940s.

Author: Adrian Mahovics

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