East Lindsey Aviation Trail
a new publication that is due for release in early March 2013, which
has been compiled by Howard Heeley.
features several bases that 619 Squadron (The Forgotten
operated from, including: RAF Woodhall Spa, RAF Coningsby and RAF
Strubby. We understand from Howard that ‘Our Squadron’ will be well
represented in the booklet and he is willing to arrange to send copies
out to anyone who is interested. Please send him an email to request a
Below is an extract from one of the texts.
Woodhall Spa opened as a satellite base to RAF Coningsby in February
1942. The first squadron to fly from the base was 106 Sqn; however the
Lancasters of 97 Sqn arrived on 1 March 1942, becoming operational on
20 March 1942.
April 1943 97 Sqn moved to RAF Bourn but three crews remained as the
nucleus of 619 Sqn (The Forgotten Squadron), which formed at RAF
Woodhall Spa on 18 April 1943 and the squadron became operational on 11
regional RAF base responsibility changes saw 619 Sqn move to RAF
Coningsby, with 617 Sqn moving in the opposite direction. Both
squadrons had officers’ quarters in what is now the Petwood Hotel. By
this time 617 Sqn was using two Mosquitoes for low-level
target marking and 627 Sqn moved to the base to learn this technique.”
part of the work to compile this booklet Howard visited most of the
former RAF sites in East Lindsey and this included the former RAF base
at Strubby where 619 Squadron was stationed in John Whiteley’s era.
lot of the original wartime buildings still survive and a few are
pictured below, including the former Watch Room, which is now someone’s