Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


RAF Coleby Grange

RAF Coleby Grange was equipped with three Thor long-range ballistic missiles, each armed with a one-megaton nuclear warhead, controlled by the US Air Force under so-called dual-key arrangements. The missiles were based at five dispersal sites, all reporting to a central headquarters. The Lincolnshire headquarters was at Hemswell, with the dispersals at Bardney, Caistor, Coleby Grange and Ludford Magna.

Coleby Grange was acquired by the RAF in 1939, and shortly afterwards became operational as a Fighter Command airfield. 253 and 264 Squadrons were briefly based there, before 409 Squadron of the Royal Canadian Air Force moved in on a more permanent basis in July 1941. This was followed by 410 Squadron until October 1943. Thereafter it was a transit station and in autumn 1944 was transferred to 27 Group as a satellite of 17 Service Flying Training School. Coleby Grange closed in 1963.




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