View Full Version : USAAF/RAE THURLEIGH - 306th BOMB GROUP (H) 12/06/10 Report

14-06-2010, 06:20 PM
A visit by me and BK to the 306th Bomb Group, Museum based at Thurleigh, bought us into contact with the curator "Ralph" a great man:thumb who has dedicated most of his hard earned cash and time to create this small but well presented museum dedicated to the memory of the 306th! We both got a personal tour of the museum along with loads of anecdotes and mission historys thrown in for free! We talked for well over an hour on the history of Thurleigh, and I got quite a bit of info from him of what remains of the WW2 buildings on the base:thumb

After we left the museum, we both went off in search of what remains:)
Driving around the outer roads that surround the base, all you have to do is divert off the numerous dead end tracks that lead of the main road to come across numerous WW2 remains:thumb

The first BK spotted in a field, 2 Stanton Air raid Shelters! Game On:thumb
We didnt venture into them as the field was covered in young wheat, and didnt want to damage the crops!

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2095.jpg

It wasn't long before I spotted some WW2 huts along with some later buildings from the RAE days!

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2097.jpg

What looks like an observatory is further from the truth:confused: This building is actually "Kinetheodolite tower" (Cine Camera Tower) there was a further tower located elsewhere on the field. Two beams were projected up onto a taking off aircraft which would then lock the camera's on and follow it around ( hence the observatory dome)while trials were carried out over the field! the data being fed to computers for trajectory analysis.
A mention of it can be found here:

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Not much left inside the dome! But a nice view can be had over the airfield:thumb

We soon came across some original WW2 Buildings These date back to 1942 and were originally the Red Cross and Officers Club, they were later used by the RAE for workshops and have been abandoned since the airfields closure in 1993. Totally unchaved, Decay and UE at its best:thumb

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2234.jpg

Inside, there is a labyrinth of corridors ands rooms that lead off from one another, me and BK spent over an hour just wandering around, most are empty rooms but the decay is second to none:)

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While we were inside the buildings, there were constant noises that had me and BK, creeping Ninja style around most of the time! I later learned that the Former Officers Club is haunted:panic Apparently 3 airmen have been seen sitting down playing cards around a table!

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2187.jpg

The former Red Cross building/hall where once the sounds of Glen Miller rang out are now silent, and now home to cattle/sheep:confused:

Meanwhile outside! The weather was turning bad:w00t What with all the weird noises and the amount of time we had spent inside the buildings, Gloom was setting in fast!

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2235.jpg

We both agreed it was time to leave, and hand the buildings back to the "Ghosts" of the
306th Bombardment Group:coffee
http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/306bg.jpg

Thanks for looking:thumb

Further pics here
http://s260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/?start=all

17-06-2010, 03:49 PM
Was a good day, wont post loads but here are some of my most decent snaps of the day:thumb



Destroyed toliets, was like a map on call of duty in here:lol:





18-06-2010, 03:23 PM
That's very nice indeed, more pics please :-)

18-06-2010, 04:35 PM
i like the tracking tower, looks like an obervatory or radome.

19-06-2010, 12:35 AM
That's very nice indeed, more pics please :-)

Happy to oblige:thumb

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2079.jpg

Some nice old Cold War signage still around in the hedgerow:thumb it still does its job by keeping most people away still:)

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Not 100% sure what the tower was used for? but research suggests it was for UHF/VHF radio. its made of solid wood, which in places looked dangerous! So I did not attempt to climb it:thumbd

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2231.jpg

Around the side of one of the buidlings was an old abandoned RAF Replenishment trolley

http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii38/tankman_2008/USAAF%20306th%20BOMBARDMENT%20GROUP%20RAF%20THURLE IGH/DSCF2232.jpg

20-06-2010, 12:52 AM
I love this, cracking report and loving the images, good work ! :D :thumb