Life on a Wartime RAF Station

Above: Petrol bowsers outside the old farm buildings of Grange Farm, RAF Station Bourn. 

RAF Station Bourn in Cambridgeshire was where my father, Joe Mack, was stationed in November-December 1943. This was one of the many new Bomber Command stations which were created during the war, where accommodation was makeshift and rules slightly more relaxed than on the smart prestigious permanent stations like RAF Wyton.

Below: Bourn, some forty years after the war, North-South runway down the centre, and part of the old airfield plan showing the area around Flying Control. The red box on the photograph highlights the avenue up to Bourn Grange, to the left of  the Grange (far right of box) are what remains of SSQ.

My father’s gunner, Leslie Laver, was the only member of the crew who was treated at SSQ on the night of the crew’s dreadful aircraft crash (17 December 1943) to the east of the airfield.

My father was taken directly to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

The rest of the crew of seven had all been killed, and their bodies would have been taken to the mortuary at SSQ, which may already have been full due to the deaths of three of the Mackenzie crew on the actual airfield. See RAF Pathfinders Archive:  Why the Archive Began and Black Thursday.  

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