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Royal Air Force Station High Wycombe

Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg Patch 8thUSAAF.png Shield Strategic Air Command.png United States Air Forces in Europe.png

Part of Royal Air Force
Located Near Walters Ash, Buckinghamshire, England
High-wycombe-RAF.jpg
RAF High Wycombe Station Crest
Type Air Force Base
Built 1938
In use 1938-Present
Current
owner
Royal Air Force

RAF High Wycombe is a Royal Air Force station, situated in the village of Walters Ash, near High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire, England. Its purpose is to serve the needs of the RAF Air Command, situated on the site. It is also the headquarters of the European Air Group. The motto of RAF High Wycombe is 'Non Sibi', which translates as 'not for ourselves'.

Contents

Present

RAF High Wycombe is situated roughly three miles from the town of High Wycombe over three sites - No 1 Site houses the Command HQ and the Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC- UK CAOC or CAOC 9), No 2 Site houses the officers' mess, while No 3 site is the domestic site, airmen and NCO's quarters, MT yard, PT flight and Supply Flight. There is a nuclear bunker at the site, the existence of which is officially classified, but which nevertheless is clearly visible on satellite photographs (e.g. Google Earth).

The site is a non-flying station and was home to RAF Strike Command before it became part of the newly formed RAF Air Command on 1 April 2007. Air Command is commanded by an Air Chief Marshal. RAF High Wycombe is commanded by a Group Captain.

USAAF use

During World War II High Wycombe was used by the United States Army Air Force. It was the home of the 325th Reconnaissance Wing from 9 August 1944 though 20 October 1945. The VIII Bomber Command Headquarters was at the RAF Daws Hill that is on the other side of High Wycombe near the M40. RAF Daws Hill was de-commissioned in August 2007.

During the Cold War

Operationally during the Cold War the Director UKWMO would have been located at the United Kingdom Regional Air Operations Command (UK RAOC) within Strike Command's Operations Centre nuclear bunker at RAF High Wycombe to instigate the national Four minute air raid warnings, with the Deputy Director located at a standby UK RAOC, described at the time as being "elsewhere in the UK", but has since been revealed as being at Goosnargh near Preston within the UKWMO Western Sector nuclear bunker. Warnings were instantly distributed around the country by the HANDEL Warning Broadcast System via 250 Carrier Control Points located at major police headquarters and 17,000 WB400 (later WB1400) carrier receivers in armed forces headquarters, hospitals, post offices, Royal Observer Corps posts and private homes in remote rural areas where hand operated sirens replaced the power sirens in the urban towns.

See also

External links

Coordinates: 51°40′26″N 0°47′50″W / 51.67389°N 0.79722°W / 51.67389; -0.79722

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