RAF Tempsford [concept]


RAF Tempsford [concept]


RAF Tempsford was in Bedfordshire, three miles north east of Sandy. Construction started in July 1940 and was completed in October 1941, when the station became home to the RAF Special Duty Service as part of 3 Group. 138 and 161 Squadrons arrived in March 1942. They specialised in the delivery of agents either by parachute or by landing at night in a moonlit field. The squadrons also conducted 'pick up' operations, again landing in the chosen fields to collect agents who needed to return to England. Squadrons flying from Tempsford also supplied arms, ammunition, radios and other equipment to the resistance movements in German occupied countries. At the height of their operations during winter 1943/44 there were about forty aircraft based there, but by early 1945 138 Squadron had moved out and reverted to its bombing role. 161 Squadron remained there until disbanding in June 1945. The station closed for flying in 1947 and the land has been returned to agriculture, very little of the station remains.

It was home to: 53 Squadron, 109 Squadron, 138 Squadron, 149 Squadron, 161 Squadron and 426 Squadron.

Aircraft flown included: B-24, Wellington, Halifax, Stirling and Lysander.
Wartime losses: 577


IBCC Digital Archive


Clare Bennett
Julian Maslin
Trevor Hardcastle


This content is available under a CC BY-NC 4.0 International license (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0). It has been published ‘as is’ and may contain inaccuracies or culturally inappropriate references that do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the University of Lincoln or the International Bomber Command Centre. For more information, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ and https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/legal.


“RAF Tempsford [concept],” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed March 21, 2019, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/5720.

Item Relations

This item has no relations.

Can you help improve this description?