RAF Driffield


Royal Air Force Driffield or RAF Driffield is a former Royal Air Force station in the East Riding of Yorkshire, in England. It lies about 2 miles (3 km) south-west of Driffield and 11 miles (18 km) north-west of Beverley. It is now operated by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, as the Driffield Training Area.

RAF Driffield
RAF Eastburn
Driffield Training Area
Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg
Airport typeMilitary
OwnerMinistry of Defence
OperatorRoyal Air Force
LocationDriffield, East Riding of Yorkshire, England
Built1918 as RAF Eastburn
1935 as RAF Driffield
In use1918–1920 Royal Air Force
1936–1977 Royal Air Force
1977–1992 British Army
1992–1996 Royal Air Force
1996–Present Defence Training Estate
Elevation AMSL82 ft / 25 m
Coordinates53°59′41″N 000°29′11″W / 53.99472°N 0.48639°W / 53.99472; -0.48639Coordinates: 53°59′41″N 000°29′11″W / 53.99472°N 0.48639°W / 53.99472; -0.48639
RAF Driffield is located in East Riding of Yorkshire
RAF Driffield
RAF Driffield
Location in the East Riding of Yorkshire


The site was first opened in 1918 by the Royal Air Force under the name of RAF Eastburn, and closed in 1920.[1] In 1935 a new airfield was built, initially training bomber crews. In 1977 the site was turned over to the British Army for use as a driving school, and was renamed Alamein Barracks, a satellite to Normandy Barracks of the Defence School of Transport at Leconfield.[2]

The station was the initial posting of Leonard Cheshire[3] VC, who was at that time a member of 102 Squadron.[4]

On 15 August 1940 there was a German air raid on the airfield. Casualties included the first fatality in the Women's Royal Air Force.[5][6]

On 1 August 1959, the station was armed with PGM-17 Thor ballistic missiles, which were subsequently decommissioned by April 1963.[7]


The following units were here at some point:[8]



  1. ^ Chorlton, Martyn (2014). Forgotten aerodromes of World War I : British military aerodromes, seaplane stations, flying-boat and airship stations to 1920. Manchester: Crecy. p. 43. ISBN 9780859791816.
  2. ^ "RAF Driffield". Hull & East Riding at War. 10 July 2013. Retrieved 12 March 2016.
  3. ^ "No. 35005". The London Gazette. 3 December 1940. p. 6862
  4. ^ Jackson, Leonard (November 2011). "Group Captain Leonard Cheshire VC, OM, DSO and two bars, DFC - Lincolnshire Life". www.lincolnshirelife.co.uk. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  5. ^ "WAAF". www.rauxaf.net. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  6. ^ Goss, Chris (23 August 2018). "The Many: RAF Ground Crew in the Battle of Britain | Britain at War". britainatwar.keypublishing.com. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  7. ^ Delve 2006, p. 114.
  8. ^ "Driffield (Eastburn)". Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust. Retrieved 9 February 2016.


  • Delve, Ken (2006). The military airfields of Britain : Northern England: Co. Durham, Cumbria, Isle of Man, Lancashire, Merseyside, Manchester, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear, Yorkshire. Marlborough: Crowood Press. ISBN 1-86126-809-2.
  • Halpenny, B,B. Action Stations: Military Airfields of Yorkshire v. 4. Patrick Stephens Ltd, 1982. ISBN 978-0850595321.
  • Philpott, Ian. The Royal Air Force 1930 to 1939, Volume II Rearmament. Barnsley, UK: Pen & Sword, 2008. ISBN 978-1-84415-391-6.

External linksEdit


  • UK Airfields - Driffield
  • Derelict Places – RAF Driffield – May 2011
  • Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust – RAF Driffield (Eastburn)
  • Control Towers – RAF Driffield airfield