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  • ZRX61
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • May 2005
    • 4770

    Fowlmere

    Appeared on FaceAche:



    Mike Pettyto Fenland History on Facebook 5 hrs


    Fowlmere Airfield 1917 - Vanished Cambridgeshire:
    Cambridge Antiquarian Society compiled a photographic survey of Cambridgeshire between 1904 and 1940, visiting every village and recording aspects of the county that were likely to disappear.
    This photo of Fowlmere milestone and airfield, 1917 was taken by W.M. Palmer
    Can you place it, what memories does it spark. And could you share a modern view of the same scene lets rediscover Vanished Cambridgeshire
    Heres my caption:
    The Rev A.C. Yorke read a paper to the Cambridge Antiquarian Society in May 1911:
    Fowlmere, humdrum, commonplace, yields to the curious and inquisitive much that is of amusement and interest. Why do the roads meander as they do? Which is the older, road or tenement? Why this copyhold should enjoy the ancient Right of Common Pasture and that, tother side of a crumbling wall, should never have had that Right? [A.C. Yorke. A village in the making. 1911 - PCAS vol.15]
    Yet humdrum Fowlmere soon found itself possessed of an airfield which opened as a training establishment in 1918 and ended its days as a storehouse for planes until its hangars were demolished in 1923.
    The hangars are glimpsed in the background of a photograph presented to the Survey in 1917.
    When the war ended, a rather free and easy attitude prevailed at the airfield and joy rides were given to local people in aircraft such as the Avro 504. [L.W. Price. Bird lake village. 2002]. The milestone was one of a series erected in 1731 on the road from Cambridge to Barkway, believed to be the first true milestones set up since Roman times. They were originally paid for from a bequest of Dr. W. Mowse, the Master of Trinity Hall & carry the college arms.

    The photographs and negatives taken as part of the Cambridge Antiquarian Societys Photographic Survey have been deposited in the Cambridgeshire Collection in Cambridge Central Library where they may be consulted by all.
    The caption is amongst thousands of similar stories in A Cambridgeshire Scrapbook 1897-1990 which you can read and download from my Internet Archive site https://archive.org/details/Cambridg...ok2018Revision
    There are also a 100 mini-scrapbooks on individual villages including this one
    Vanishing Cambridgeshire by Mike Petty was first published by Breedon Books in 2003; it can still be found in Antiquarian bookshops and via internet booksellers
    For more about the Cambridge Antiquarian Society see their website - http://www.camantsoc.org/


    If anybody ever tells you anything about an aeroplane which is so bloody complicated you can't understand it, take it from me: It's all balls. RJM.
  • adrian_gray
    Which idiot let HIM in?
    • Jan 2000
    • 2992

    #2
    Interesting, thank you!

    If you look here: 5204'31.17" N 003'54.41" E on Google Earth and find the 2007 imagery you'll see cropmarks from the original Fowlmere airfield - it's at the southern end of its WW2 version. I think on the disused WW2 airfields FaceAche page, someone came up with a link to photos of the demolition circa 1920 as well. Somewhere I have a photo of an aircrew sergeant which I think is from there as well... but where?

    ETA - I've searched that group and can't find it. I know the discussion was relatively recent so it's out there on the intertubes somewhere... good luck finding it!

    Adrian

    Last edited by adrian_gray; 22nd June 2019, 21:11.
    "Snow clearing equipment has been found under snowdrift" - message sent from RNAS Hatston, Orkney, 1944.

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    • Wyvernfan
      wyvernfan@gmail.com
      • Oct 2007
      • 5893

      #3
      Then and now taken today. Quite fitting that the current runway is where the old hut once stood.
      Facebook page
      https://www.facebook.com/Westland.Wy...tif_t=page_fan

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      • adrian_gray
        Which idiot let HIM in?
        • Jan 2000
        • 2992

        #4
        Nice comparison,

        Adrian
        "Snow clearing equipment has been found under snowdrift" - message sent from RNAS Hatston, Orkney, 1944.

        Comment

        • viscount
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Mar 2011
          • 392

          #5
          Just love the 1753 milepost in its 1917 coat of paint, and today showing its age with a patina of lichen and mellowed colouring.

          Classic 'Flypast Forum' conundrum here.

          The conundrum here is, do I rush out with wire brush, chisel and pots of spray paint to 'restore' it to its condition 100 years ago; do I erect a brown 'tourist information' sign next to it, declaring it to be one of the oldest stone mileage posts in post Roman Britain, or do I dig it up and take into a museum? Restore to 'new', preserve 'as is', or display out of context dry and safe in a museum? I'd leave it there, protected by its own isolation, as a stone it could still be there in a thousand years - it has already clocked up a quarter of that.

          There is no correct answer, but no doubt lots of conflicting opinion. As this is stone not wood, metal and fabric, perhaps best to leave the subject (and the mile stone) alone.
          Last edited by viscount; 23rd June 2019, 07:35.

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          • ZRX61
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • May 2005
            • 4770

            #6
            I'd throw a fresh coat of paint on it.... pukka whitewash though.
            If anybody ever tells you anything about an aeroplane which is so bloody complicated you can't understand it, take it from me: It's all balls. RJM.

            Comment

            • Flat 12x2
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Sep 2003
              • 508

              #7
              Originally posted by Wyvernfan View Post
              Then and now taken today. Quite fitting that the current runway is where the old hut once stood.
              I do wonder if it was removed during WWII and replaced later as it's current location would have put it on the southern edge of the East West runway as it crossed the road back then. Not something you would want at the edge of a runway!
              Nice bit of history regardless

              Wide open & turning left

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