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RAF Sutton on Hull

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Heritage plaque

Hull Local Historian Len Bacon sponsored the Hull City Council Blue Plaque that is now displayed inside Bransholme Library; commemorating the RAF base that existed in the area between 1939 and 1961.

Originally designated as RAF 17 Balloon Centre it was opened on Wednesday 28th June 1939 and was from where, during World War 2, the Balloon Barrage in the defence of Kingston upon Hull and the Humber Area was controlled and maintained. By September 1942 over 2,000 Royal Air Force and Women’s Auxiliary Air Force personnel served at and from the Centre which, on the 15th October 1942, was renamed RAF Station Sutton-on-Hull. It became the home of the RAF School of Fire Fighting and Rescue from1943-59.

The RAF Station was finally disposed of on Monday 14th August 1961. Len Bacon presenting his Blue Plaque in Brandsholme Library.Covering 83 acres, the land was developed for housing and facilities, including the library and the North Point Shopping Centre.

Len Bacon has sponsored it entirely from the proceeds of the sale of his own book “Hull’s Own Air Force Station”.

This Blue plaque is the first outside the Hull City Centre, the first marking a local World War 2 defence installation and definitely the first for Bransholme.

The original gates from the main entrance to the Station were found to be in use at a Hull’s East Park. The local authority refurbished them in 1999 to mark the 60th anniversary of the opening of the Station and, to identify and commemorate those who served and trained there, two plaques are affixed to the gates.

17 Balloon Centre and RAF Station Sutton on Hull is now well and truly marked!

RAF Sutton On Hull Web Site

All images on this page were kindly supplied by, and remain the copyright of, Mike Poole


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A very special thanks to Hull Local Studies Library for their help with our research projects.