RAF Wyton


RAF Wyton
Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg
Near St Ives, Cambridgeshire in England
Entrance to RAF Wyton - geograph.org.uk - 262207.jpg
Canberra PR9 'XH170' which is RAF Wyton's gate guardian
RAF Wyton Badge.jpg
Verum Exquiro
(Latin for 'Seek the Truth')[1]
RAF Wyton is located in Cambridgeshire
RAF Wyton
RAF Wyton
Shown within Cambridgeshire
Coordinates52°21′26″N 000°06′28″W / 52.35722°N 0.10778°W / 52.35722; -0.10778Coordinates: 52°21′26″N 000°06′28″W / 52.35722°N 0.10778°W / 52.35722; -0.10778
TypeRoyal Air Force station
Site information
OwnerMinistry of Defence
OperatorRoyal Air Force
Controlled byStrategic Command
Site history
Built1915 (1915)
In use1916 – present
Garrison information
Wing Commander Keith Slack
Airfield information
IdentifiersIATA: QUY, ICAO: EGUY, WMO: 03566
Elevation40.2 metres (132 ft) AMSL
Direction Length and surface
08/26 799 metres (2,621 ft) Grass
Source: RAF Wyton Defence Aerodrome Manual[2]

Royal Air Force Wyton or more simply RAF Wyton (IATA: QUY, ICAO: EGUY) is a Royal Air Force station near St Ives, Cambridgeshire, England. The airfield is decommissioned and is now home to the Joint Forces Intelligence Group.


Flying station

A Percival Petrel and Bristol Blenheim Mark IVs of No. 2 Group at Wyton between 1939 and 1941
"Map of Air Routes and Landing Places in Great Britain, as temporarily arranged by the Air Ministry for civilian flying", published in 1919, showing "Wyton" as a "military and civil station", and as a stop on the route between Hounslow, near London, and the north.

Wyton has been a military airfield since 1916, when it was used for training by the Royal Flying Corps and then its successor the Royal Air Force (RAF).[3]

During the Second World War it was used primarily as a bomber base, flying Bristol Blenheim, de Havilland Mosquito and Avro Lancaster aircraft.[4] In 1942 it became the home of the Pathfinder Force under the command of Group Captain Don Bennett.[3]

After the war Wyton became home to the English Electric Canberras of the Strategic Reconnaissance Force.[5] Vickers Valiants arrived for No. 543 Squadron in 1955 and a Handley Page Victor arrived for the Radar Reconnaissance Flight in 1959.[5]

In 1974, three Nimrod R1s belonging to No. 51 Squadron arrived for use in the Elint and Sigint role, and in 1975, the T17 and T17A Canberras of No. 360 Squadron arrived: this was a joint RAF and RN Squadron specialising in Electronic countermeasures training.[5]

In the early 1990s one of its pilots was the rugby union player, Flight Lieutenant Rory Underwood.[6]

During a four-month period in 1989, two squadrons of U.S. Air Force Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II jets were operated out of RAF Wyton while the runway at their base, nearby RAF Alconbury, was resurfaced.[7]

In May 1995 both RAF Wyton and RAF Alconbury airfields were decommissioned and Wyton was formally amalgamated with RAF Brampton, and later with RAF Henlow to make all three locations a single RAF Station under a single station commander for administrative purposes.[8] The airfield continued to host light aircraft for the Cambridge and London University Air Squadrons until they both moved to RAF Wittering in 2015.[9]


Following the 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review the RAF Brampton Wyton Henlow formation was disbanded: RAF Henlow subsequently became a separate station again and RAF Brampton was demolished.[10]

The Joint Forces Intelligence Group, a unit which is responsible for the collection of signals, geospatial, imagery and measurement and signature intelligence,[11] moved from Feltham in Middlesex to RAF Wyton in 2013.[12][13] 42 Engineer Regiment relocated from Denison Barracks in Hermitage to RAF Wyton to co-locate with the Joint Forces Intelligence Group in July 2014[14] and No. 1 Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance Squadron moved from RAF Marham to Wyton in April 2017.[15]

Hangars in 2013

Former units

The following squadrons were posted to Wyton between 1916 and 1935:

The following squadrons were posted to Wyton between 1935 and 1939:

The following squadrons were posted to Wyton between 1939 and 1945:

The following squadrons were posted to Wyton between 1946 and 2011:

Other units moved (now disbanded)

The following other units were posted to Wyton at some point:[41]

Currently operational units moved

On 25 March 2013 it was decided to relocate the following flying units from Wyton due to the high maintenance costs of the airfield.[43]

Based units

Notable units based at RAF Wyton.[44][15][45]

See also



  1. ^ Pine, L.G. (1983). A dictionary of mottoes (1 ed.). London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. p. 249. ISBN 0-7100-9339-X.
  2. ^ "RAF Wyton Defence Aerodrome Manual (DAM)" (PDF). RAF Wyton. Military Aviation Authority. 31 March 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 August 2017. Retrieved 27 August 2017.
  3. ^ a b "RAF Wyton". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  4. ^ "Avro Lancaster B.Mk.1 R5868/7325M Museum Accession Number 74/A/12" (PDF). RAF Museum. p. 3. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  5. ^ a b c "RAF Wyton". Vulcan to the Sky Trust. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  6. ^ "Sport. Rugby Union. pic: January 1989. RAF. Wyton, Cambridgeshire. England wing Rory Underwood, a pilot flight-lieutenant in the RAF, poses in the cockpit his Canberra jet". Getty Images. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  7. ^ "A-10A Thunderbolt of 511th Tactical Fighter Squadron/10th Tactical Fighter Wing on detachment to RAF Wyton in May 1989". Airport Data. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  8. ^ "Air Officer Scotland: Air Vice Marshal Ross Paterson". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  9. ^ "University of London Air Squadron". Retrieved 26 November 2021.
  10. ^ "Dramatic Footage Shows Demolition Of RAF Base". 13 January 2017.
  11. ^ "Joint Forces Intelligence Group Achieves Full Operating Capability". Ministry of Defence. 22 September 2014. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  12. ^ "New Defence Intelligence buildings handed over to MOD". Ministry of Defence. 16 March 2012. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  13. ^ "UK JARIC Transitions to Defence Geospatial and Intelligence Fusion Centre" (PDF). November 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 February 2013.
  14. ^ "42 Engr Regt (Geo) arrive at RAF Wyton". Eagleeyeonline.vo.uk. Archived from the original on 1 February 2015. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  15. ^ a b Ellwood, Tobias (21 December 2017). "Air Force: Military Intelligence:Written question - 120057". UK Parliament. Retrieved 29 December 2017.
  16. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 40.
  17. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 45.
  18. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 50.
  19. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 53.
  20. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 54.
  21. ^ a b c d Jefford 1988, p. 57.
  22. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 59.
  23. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 63.
  24. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 70.
  25. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 39.
  26. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 60.
  27. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 29.
  28. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 38.
  29. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 43.
  30. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 55.
  31. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 64.
  32. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 28.
  33. ^ a b Jefford 1988, p. 33.
  34. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 41.
  35. ^ Raynham News (1991). "RAF West Raynham Missile Squadron to be Disbanded" (PDF). Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  36. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 52.
  37. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 69.
  38. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 89.
  39. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 96.
  40. ^ a b c Jefford 1988, p. 97.
  41. ^ "Wyton". Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust. Retrieved 10 February 2016.
  42. ^ Lake 1999, p. 58.
  43. ^ a b c d e "Defence Estate Rationalisation Update" (PDF). Ministry of Defence (MoD). Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  44. ^ "RAF Wyton". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 25 April 2021.
  45. ^ "DCMA United Kingdom | Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire". Defense Contract Management Agency. Retrieved 25 April 2021.


  • Jefford, C G (1988). RAF Squadrons. A comprehensive record of the movement and equipment of all RAF squadrons and their antecedents since 1912. Shrewsbury: Airlife. ISBN 1-85310-053-6.
  • Lake, A (1999). Flying units of the RAF. Shrewsbury: Airlife. ISBN 1-84037-086-6.
  • RAF Annual Review 2012

External links

  • Official site
  • RAF Wyton Area Voluntary Band