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Thread: Thorney Island

  1. #1

    Default Thorney Island

    Just the one photo from me, taken on 7th September 2003 while on the way back to LGW from Orlando Sanford.

  2. #2
    SuperMod Daveg4otu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    My first visit to TI was in 1955 for the BoB display ,...those were the days...cycled from Southampton by way of Hamble (airfield and Flying boat maintenance base),Lee-on-Solent(FAA),Gosport(FAA), cross the ferry..looking at a couple of carriers in Pompey dock as we crossed, thence to Portsmouth Airport...and on to TI...afterwards home to So'ton with a last call at Eastleigh about 8 PM.

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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    First phot is from 1990


    Second photo is 2007


    This is also 2007


    These next few are all in 2009



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    Senior Member PETERTHEEATER's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    I was an ATC cadet with a Portsmouth flight in the early 50s and we had a day visit to Thorney. My only real memory of that trip was sitting in a classroom receiving basic instruction on the operation of (I think) a GEE set which the instructor demonstrated by tracking the NAAFI wagon inbound to serve tea break!

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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    My father ended his R A F career at Thorny Island,1919 to1954 his name was W/O Henry John Pearson ,he was in aircraft maintenance. When was the base closed? RPinMB

  6. #6

    Default Re: Thorney Island

    Quote Originally Posted by t bay ca View Post
    When was the base closed?
    March 1976 according to my notes, though it is now in use by the Army as Baker Barracks

  7. #7
    SuperMod Daveg4otu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    AFAIK Microlight flying still takes place from there - the small hangar at N50.48.54.34/W0.56.02.17 is used by the micros...if you look at historical imagery on GE you can see some aircraft outside in 2001.In the latest pictures there is a micro on the peri-track just where the track from the little hangar joins.
    Last edited by Daveg4otu; 07-02-2010 at 12:39.

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    Senior Member PETERTHEEATER's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    25 October 1941, as part of the new aircraft launched Rockets Projectile (R.P) development, a southern area of the airfield was used for testing of the Hurricane installation using prototype Hurricane L1760.

    Some round were fired with the aircraft static and the tail trestled so that the rounds went out into the English Channel. Satisfied with that some air launched rounds were fired and high speed camera recorded.

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    SuperMod Peter Kirk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    I believe Pilsey Island (south of TI) was also used for RP test firing from the air. I am seeking confirmation of this as I don't think it was an "official" range. Maybe it was only used for this testing?

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    Senior Member PETERTHEEATER's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thorney Island

    It is very likely that Pilsea Island was used only for the initial trials.

    The following statement is taken from a personal account of Grp Capt 'Dixie' Dean who was in charge of the installation testing on the ground and as pilot in the air:

    THORNEY ISLAND AIRFIELD - The southern part of Thorney Island airfield was used for the ground testing of RPs. This entailed pointing the aircraft out to sea (tail raised) and firing singles and salvos. Hurricane, Beaufighter and Swordfish aircraft installations were 'cleared' here prior to air firing tests. In addition 'a submarine outline was cut through the sod into the chalk of the downs nearby. This was used to demonstrate Swordfish aircraft RP attacks to Admirality VIPs.

    The 'boffins' had to set up high speed cameras to film the air fired shots so the firing aircraft had to be close. Inert heads of course but just fire them at Pilsea?

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