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paf1950
15-03-2010, 21:26
I am currently updating the history of Catterick Camp/Garrison. One of the gents I have been in contact with was quizzing me on bomb storage at Kiplin Hall near Scorton. I have no knowledge on this, however, I did tell him that I knew some men who might.

Seperate to this, the ammunition train explosion at Catterick Bridge station during WW2 comprised bombs that were consigned to 23 ASD. From what I can gather, 23 ASD was located at Bedale N. Yorks. This begs the question, why offload at Catterick to move by road to Bedale, when Bedale has it's own sidings?

Over to you folks:-))

Paul Francis
15-03-2010, 22:02
What history is this then? Never knew there was one.

Richard Flagg
15-03-2010, 23:08
Would it not been on Scorton Airfield post war? Perhaps it was known by another name?

PETERTHEEATER
16-03-2010, 07:24
The site was here:


http://www.flashearth.com/?lat=54.377848&lon=-1.569447&z=15.9&r=0&src=msl

Kiplin, originally, was assigned by 42 Group RAF as an Air Ammunition Park (AAP) the site was an 'extension' of No 92 M.U. at Brafferton and stored Small Arms Ammunition for direct supply to fighter operations from Catterick and Scorton airfields.

The depot was re-numbered as 224 M.U. and designated a Forward Ammunition Depot (FAD) in Autumn 1942 with a capacity of 2000 tons. Airfields at Leeming, Croft and Middleton St George now became customers.

Catterick Bridge Station was used as a rail-head and, yes, there was an accidental detonation there on 04 February 1944 but I don't have details.

Main storage was on the surface in woods directly to the NE of Kiplin Hall - used as HQ and accommodation - and bombs were in spaced stacks alongside temporary roads. Hodber Hill Plantation and nearby roads were aslo used as storage when capacity was increased.

Sub-sites were at Moulton and Thrintoft. Moulton (I think) was a former radar site.

The depot closed late 1944 and stocks were moved to Scorton airfield.

Carnaby will probably fill in more.

PETERTHEEATER
21-11-2010, 06:54
I originally thought that the munitions train which exploded was supplying the RAF FAD at Kiplin. The OP mentioned 'No 23 ASD Bedale' which was a Royal Army Service Corps munitions depot being served from the same railhead. Unavoidably, I have been sucked into looking for information on RASC ASD sited in the UK during WW2 and can find only scant information. A list of sites would be nice. A brief mention of the ASD at Drymen (Near Loch Lomond) as having 65,000 tons at one point gives a measure of the amounts stockpiled around the country during WW2.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

paf1950
22-11-2010, 00:00
Peter, that is what confused me. Bedale, to this day retains sidings etc. Wensleydale Railway now operate the line. So, why offload at Catterick Bridge to transport South to Bedale?

PETERTHEEATER
22-11-2010, 08:29
After some searching I found personal reminiscences referring to ammunition storage at Hornby Park (4.5 miles NW Bedale) and a sub-site at Thorp Perrow (Snape Mosses) 1.5 miles S Bedale) run by RASC which I believe to be sites under 31 ASD (Army).

The National Archives has (at first trawl) a lot of RASC records but mostly photographs of this and that.

Still looking!

David Thompson
22-11-2010, 11:27
I've made several visits to Kiplin Hall over the years and on my earlier visits there was quite a lot to see , even around the hall itself were remains of wooden hut foundations and in the woods close by I found several badly corroded ammunition boxes . I'm now in contact with someone who was stationed at Scorton around 1947-49 when the airfield was stockpiled with all types of ammunition . He also told me that they used to burn off ammo/cordite whatever in the old gravel pits at Ellerton between Kiplin and Scorton . The site is now a watersports centre .
There are the remains of a large ammunition depot just south of Melmerby off the A61 and west of the A1 . A lot of the buiuldings have now been demolished and an industrial estate has been built there .
Also in that area I have seen the remains of an ammunition storage depot/area within Camp Hill Palantation near Kirklington to the north of Melmerby . The area was obviously saturated with them ?

ColinBa
14-10-2011, 10:22
Has anyone looked up
http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/displaycataloguedetails.asp?CATID=2851598&CATLN=6&accessmethod=5
It is titled Melmerby Storage Depot, Yorks: report of an enquiry by Sir John Forster, Chairman National Arbitration Tribunal

PETERTHEEATER
16-10-2011, 08:32
I have not read it but the summary suggests and independent enquiry into an incident.

Mods; I suggest this is moved to a new Melmerby thread to avoid it being hidden under Kiplin.

paf1950
29-10-2011, 13:47
Paul, sorry, just noticed your comment from last year. The Story of Catterick Camp by Howard Cole was published in 1972 by the Aldershot Press. Funding bids for the update are currently being collated. The original intent to publish a book to coincide with the Centenary of the Camp in 2014 has morphed into a website because of the wealth of information that is being made available.

A certain number of books will be made available, however, information will be updated via the website, once it is created.

John Woods
24-03-2012, 23:11
I originally thought that the munitions train which exploded was supplying the RAF FAD at Kiplin. The OP mentioned 'No 23 ASD Bedale' which was a Royal Army Service Corps munitions depot being served from the same railhead. Unavoidably, I have been sucked into looking for information on RASC ASD sited in the UK during WW2 and can find only scant information. A list of sites would be nice. A brief mention of the ASD at Drymen (Near Loch Lomond) as having 65,000 tons at one point gives a measure of the amounts stockpiled around the country during WW2.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?


Having ‘lurked’ on this group for a while I have only just trawled back and found Peter’’s query about ASD’s. I have gathered a mass of notes on military and MoS depots, factories and non-operational sites in the UK in WW2 and have traced some 2,500. As some of the information on RAF sites came from this group, I thought it time to repay the debt.

I have traced 15 ASD’s on 20 sites



2 ASD Oxted 1940; Ascot (Kings Ride Estate), 1941-42
15 ASD Marston Magna 1940-42
21 ASD Lydbury North 1940-42
22 ASD Savernake Forest 1940-42
23 ASD Bedale 1940-41
24 ASD Worksop 1940-42
25 ASD Shane’s Castle 1940; Aberfoyle 1941-42; Antrim 1942-
26 ASD Aberfoyle 1940; Belfast 1941
27 ASD Shefford 1940-42
28 ASD Cinderford 1941-42
29 ASD Drymen 1942-44
30 ASD Olney 1942
31 ASD Finmere 1941; Buckingham 1942 – 44
32 ASD Loughborough 1942-44
33 ASD Husthwaite 1942

Units probably remained in the last site listed in 1942, but the information was taken from the 1940/41/42 editions of “General Return of the Strength of the British Army” (War Office publication, originally classified 'Secret') and the 1942 edition was the last to give unit locations.
However I have extracted the details of each of the sites from the latest, but still unedited version of the list as these include notes from other sources, from which it is obvious that they remained in use for ammunition storage, even if some were handed over to the US Army.


Aberfoyle, Perthshire
- 26 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40)

Aberfoyle, Perthshire
- 25 ASD RAOC by 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)

Aberfoyle, Perthshire [Code-AA]
- Ammunition depot holding 66,400 tons (originally 176,000 tons at war’s end ) of artillery and other munitions on 220 sq miles of agricultural and forest land and road verges were being cleared at the rate of 2,250 tons per month (HC Deb 28 October 1947 vol 443 cc679-81 & HL Deb 27 January 1948 vol 153 cc672-4WA* )

Antrim, Co Antrim
- 25 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)

Ascot (Kings Ride Estate), Berkshire
- 2 ASD RAOC by 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41 &http://www.movcon.org.uk/History/Documents/DID/D-MCHS%200507.htm ), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)

Bedale, N Yorkshire [Code-AD]
- 23 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42), 4/44 (SUC p133-4) [may be the ASD at Thorpe Perrow qv]
- 2 BAD RAOC by 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41)

Bedale (Thorpe Perrow , Snape )
ASD by 1/44
http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/13/a3818513.shtml

Belfast, Co Down
- 26 ASD RAOC by 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41)

Buckingham, Buckinghamshire
- 31 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42); by 12/44 (SUC p133-4)
- sub site of 31 ASD at Olney by 20/9/44 (SUC p133-4)
- CAD (FS) [??] - amended Peace Establishment issued 3/6/53 (ACI 321/53), 7/53 (ACI 419/53)

Cinderford, Gloucestershire [Code-AG]
- 28 ASD RAOC by 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)
- Ammunition Supply Depot - used by British Army by mid 1942 to store shipments from the USA (US Ord p98)
- US Army Ordnance Corps Ammunition Depot O-660 activated 11/9/42 (US Ord p98)
- became Composite Depot and began storing USAAF munitions late 1942 (US Ord p98)
- US Army Chemical Depot (soon converted to Chemical Section of an Ordnance Depot) opened c1/43 (USChem p 146)
- US Depot C-903 operated by 7th Chem Depot Co 5/1/43- 16/9/43 (Web 1)
- USAAF C-903 Chemical Warfare Establishment ?/? - 15/5/46 (Ferguson p123)
- US Army Ordnance Depot O-660 by 6/44 (USRTO) [noted as c/o 28 SD]
- [US] 65th Cml Depot Co 3/10/43-16/7/44 (Web 1)

Drymen, Stirlingshire
- 29 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42) [but listed as Drymore]
- ASD by winter/44 (SUC p133-4?)

Finmere, Oxfordshire [Code-AF]
- RAOC [Depot ?] by 23/10/42 (BWB-AN2/1045 Amendt 1)
- 31 ASD by 14/12/42 (BWB-AN2/1045 Amendt 4)

Husthwaite, N Yorkshire
- 33 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)

Loughborough, Leicestershire
- 32 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)
- sub unit of 21 MU Fauld (at 32 ASD RAOC) from 9/44 (SHH)

Lydbury North, Shropshire
- 21 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)

Marston Magna, Somerset [Code-AM]
- 15 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)
- Ammunition Storage Depot - used by British Army by mid 1942 to store shipments from the USA (US Ord p98)
- US Army Chemical Depot opened 15/7/42 (USChem p 138)
- US Army Ordnance Corps Ammunition Depot O-680 activated 2/8/42 with a capacity of 5,000 tons (US Ord p98)
- "HM Sec of State for War Ammunition Store" by c30/9/42 (BWB-AN2/1045) [mss note on list "24/3/44 under US Army"]
- became Composite Depot and began storing USAAF munitions late 1942 (US Ord p98)
- US Army Ordnance Depot O-680 by 6/44 (USRTO)
- US units listed 2-4/44 and 7-9/44 (Web 1)

Olney, Buckinghamshire
- 30 ASD RAOC by 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)
- sub site of 31 ASD Buckingham by 20/9/44 (SUC p13-4)

Oxted, Surrey
- 2 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40)

Savernake Forest, Wiltshire
- 22 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41)
- 22 ASD opened 4/42, used by British Army by mid 1942 to store shipments from the USA (US Ord p98 & GWR Journal No 22 p341-350)
- used for short period as RAF Forward Ammunition Depot c/42 (Airfield Review Vol 10 No 2 Oct 1988)
- US Army Chemical Depot opened 15/7/42 (USChem p 138)
- US Army Ordnance Corps Ammunition Depot O-675 activated 2/8/42 with a capacity of 40,000 tons (US Ord p98)
- became Composite Depot and began storing USAAF munitions late 1942 (US Ord p98)
- US Army Ordnance Depot O-675 c/o 22 ASD by 6/44 (USRTO)
- US Army units present 11/43-1/45 (Web 1)
- serious explosion 2/1/46, N Savernake Military sidings taken out of use [and site finally cleared ?] 28/7/50 (GWR Journal No 22 p341-350)

Shane's Castle, Co Antrim
- 25 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40)

Shefford, Bedfordshire
- 27 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41) 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)
- 27 ASD storing chemical warfare and other ammunition in Chicksands Woods by ?/? (http://www.airfieldinformationexchange.org/community/showthread.php?7737-Shefford-No-27-ASD-Chemical-Warfare

Worksop, Nottinghamshire
- 24 ASD RAOC by 31/12/40 (Gen Return 12/40), 31/12/41 (Gen Return 12/41), 31/12/42 (Gen Return 12/42)



I have been collecting these sites for over ten years, initially to identify those which were rail served, but I traced so many it seemed sensible to list them all, then sort out the rail served sites later.

As I have been doing this for my own ‘amusement’, I have not considered publication, even if it would be commercially viable, but now hope that at some time I can put it up on the internet where it would be available at all.

If anyone would like a copy of the list which is about 1.5MB (or 300 pages in old money), please contact me on isambard6(at)ntlworld.com (replace ‘at’ with symbol). I would be grateful for any additions or corrections, which would be given full acknowledgement.

John Woods

PETERTHEEATER
25-03-2012, 05:17
John, thank you for your detailed response that is of interest to me and a few other AiX members.

My personal interest in Army ASDs is to be able to identify their relationship to similar RAF and USAAF sites. Indeed, I know that some RASC manned sites stored air related munitions albeit - in some cases - for only a short period.

I shall digest your list and compare to my records and comment as necessary. See also my e-mail to you.

ChuckMetcalfe
11-05-2012, 21:01
I am currently updating the history of Catterick Camp/Garrison. One of the gents I have been in contact with was quizzing me on bomb storage at Kiplin Hall near Scorton. I have no knowledge on this, however, I did tell him that I knew some men who might.
Seperate to this, the ammunition train explosion at Catterick Bridge station during WW2 comprised bombs that were consigned to 23 ASD. From what I can gather, 23 ASD was located at Bedale N. Yorks. This begs the question, why offload at Catterick to move by road to Bedale, when Bedale has it's own sidings?
Over to you folks:smile:)

As a schoolboy of 14 who got to school via the Scorton-Catterick-Richmond train service and who was returning home from Richmond, approaching Catterick Bridge station at 4pm on February 4, 1944, I failed to realise how lucky I was that the train was not early.
As we slowed to enter the station we were amazed to see that hedges were on fire.
The rest is outlined in the Darlington & Stockton Times of Friday, June 25, 2010 in a half page article of which I have a copy. The picture is from that issue and the two letters are from the same paper but of an unknown and probably later date.

C S Metcalfe.

stevemet
11-05-2012, 21:45
To many attachments I think.
I will try to assist ;}

PETERTHEEATER
12-05-2012, 05:42
Chuck, thank you for providing information on that explosion. I am always pleased to hear first hand accounts and trust that you are in good health and can find items of interest on AiX.

Unfortunately, only the right hand half of column 1 of the newspaper article is visible on the PDF copy so the initial story is fudged. I shall look at the D&T website for a copy.

EDIT: Found here-

http://www.darlingtonandstocktontimes.co.uk/leisure/features/8240815.Remembering_the_terrible_sights_and_sounds _of_a_day_of_devastation/

The actual location of the detonation was the goods yard at the end of a blind double rail spur an area which has been long overbuilt and all remains obliterated.

paf1950
12-01-2014, 12:29
The groups book was published in time to meet the Christmas market. Details can be found via our publishers website, here. http://www.ypdbooks.com/history/1004-100-years-of-catterick-1914-2014-YPD00936.html