Any of you serve at HMS NUTHATCH / RNAS Anthorn?
RNAS Anthorn, HMS Nuthatch - Proposal for a Memorial February2017
The Anthorn Community Association proposes to set up a memorial to personnel and families who served at the Royal Naval Air Station Anthorn, HMS Nuthatch, on the grassed triangle in front of the original main airfield gate, using a local “Erratic” stone (murrain boulder) with an illustrated plaque.
December this year, 60 years since the last official flight from the airfield, is our first target date for an unveiling, with a secondary of March 2018, 60 years since closure and decommissioning of HMS Nuthatch.
With support from the Royal Naval Association and local authorities, memorial unveiling is planned with a parade including Veterans, Sea Cadet Corps and Air Training Corps.
Solway House Airfield betwixt Anthorn and Cardurnock was initiated by the Royal Naval Air Service in early 1918 but lapsed after WW1 and the amalgamation of the RNAS and RFC to become the RAF. At the start of WW2 the RAF restarted the grass airfield site as a satellite to RAF Silloth. Back under Admiralty control in 1939, the Fleet Air Arm commenced lodging here in 1940 and fully took over the site in 1942. Subsequent to completion of the 3 hardened runways, RNAS Anthorn was commissioned as HMS Nuthatch in 1944. It was primarily the base for No.1 Aircraft Receipt and Despatch Unit, taking aircraft from manufacturers and preparing them for service by fitting role equipment, radios, guns etc. Various Naval Air Squadrons operated from here as well as one of the first helicopter Search and Rescue units.
Most of the houses which make up main residential part of the village of (new) Anthorn were were constructed in 1952 as Married Quarters for personnel of the Air Station.
The Air Station shut down in late 1957, decommissioned and put to “Care and Maintenance” in early 1958, subsequently the MOD/NATO VLF Radio installation commenced in 1961 becoming operational in 1964.
Since 2007 the National Physical Laboratory (MSF) Radio time pips have been transmitted from here.
Contributions of stories, photo’s and/or memorabilia would be appreciated, especially from those who were based or worked at the Air Station (or their descendants). Contact given below.
Fundraising events will start soon.
“Erratic” selected for Anthorn Memorial @ Maelmin
Project leader on behalf of the Anthorn Community Association is:
LtCdr H Parker MSc RN Rtd tel: 01697 351459 RNAS_Anthorn@sky.com