Raf Upper Heyford

Raf Upper Heyford is a former  Royal air force base near Bicester Oxfordshire, the base was first opened in 1916 during world war one but was not used until July 1918. Throughout the interwar years the base was used as a training facility, when the war broke out in 1939 three squadrons of bomber aircraft were posted to the site. After the war and until 1950 the base was used as a training facility for Royal Air Force pilots.


In 1950 and the start of the cold war the United States Air force took control of the base and decided to base their strategic bombing units at this site. Following nuclear test in Russia in the summer of 1962 a squadron of U-2 spy panes were posted to the site for reconnaissance purposes  to carry out air sampling and analysis at very high altitudes in order to determine the characteristics of latest Russian weapons.


With Frances withdrawal from NATO in 1966 reconnaissance aircraft needed a new home and Upper Heyford served that purpose. The base’s purpose was then change again when in 1970 a squadron on jet fighters were posted to the site. In 1986 the base saw it’s first real action when fighters from the base took part in El Dorado Canyon a raid on Libya. Fighters from the base also took part in the large scale operation named Desert Storm in 1991.


With the end of the cold war in 1991 the USAF no longer needed the base then base was then officially shut in 1993 and now is used to store new cars.



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