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Ripon I

Major
Also known as: RAF Ripon / RFC Ripon / Ripon Racecourse
County: North Yorkshire
Current Status: Leisure activity
Date: January 1917 - 1920s
Current Use: Disused
Used By: RAF / RFC / Civil
Landing Surface Types: Unpaved
Aircraft Roles: Fighter / General aviation / Trainer

Contrary to what is thought elsewhere, the HQ of No 76 Squadron arrived at Ripon in the early autumn of 1916 but the landing ground itself did not emerge until the beginning of 1917. Royal Aircraft Factory BE2 and BE12 variants fighters of No 76 Squadron then had this more southerly part of the racecourse available to them for Home Defence duties, these aircraft being replaced by Bristol F2bs in 1918 which remained in service after the end of fighting. No 189 (Night) Training Squadron also formed here in December 1917 but moved to Sutton’s Farm the following April.

Eventually No 76 Squadron left Ripon too in March 1919, with the airfield seeing a drawn-out notification and confirmation of relinquishment process over the rest of that year. However, this was not the end of aviation as civil aircraft still used it as a landing ground during the 1920s, as did Sir Alan Cobham for his flying displays in the early 1930s.

 

The following organisations are either based at, use and/or have at least potentially significant connections with the airfield (as at 01/09/2011):

  • Littlethorpe Parish Council
  • Ripon City Council
  • Ripon Historical Society and Family History Group
  • Ripon Library
  • Ripon Race Company Ltd

Main unit(s) present:

  • No 76 Sqn
  • No 189 (Night) TS

Photographs of the plaque at Ripon I, 2017:

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Home Defence Flight Station(s):

Catterick / Copmanthorpe / Helperby

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