RAF Penrhos

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
RAF Penrhos
Air Force Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg
Near Penrhos, Gwynedd in Wales
RAF Penrhos is located in Gwynedd
RAF Penrhos
RAF Penrhos
Shown within Gwynedd
Coordinates 52°52′26″N 004°28′26″W / 52.87389°N 4.47389°W / 52.87389; -4.47389Coordinates: 52°52′26″N 004°28′26″W / 52.87389°N 4.47389°W / 52.87389; -4.47389
Site information
Owner Air Ministry
Operator Royal Air Force
Site history
Built 1936 (1936)
In use 1937-1946 (1946)
Airfield information
Elevation 16 metres (52 ft) AMSL
Direction Length and surface

RAF Penrhos is a former Royal Air Force airfield located near Penrhos, Gwynedd and 14.7 miles (23.7 km) west of Porthmadog, Gwynedd, Wales.

It was operational from 1 February 1937 to 21 October 1946 for armarment training, air observer, bombing and gunnery schools.


In 1936 a decision was taken to establish an RAF bombing school at Penyberth, including the area of the low plateau in the bend of the river where the Afon Penrhos joins the Afon Geirch. Opposition was strongly felt, particularly as it was perceived that the sixteenth century house, Penyberth was, in Saunders Lewis’ words, ‘one of the essential homes of Welsh culture, idiom and literature’. As work proceeded, an arson attack was carried out on 8 September 1936 after which the arsonists gave themselves up at Pwllheli Police Station. Despite this the base came into operation in February 1937.

In December 1940 a detachment from No. 312 (Czechoslovak) Squadron was moved to protect Penrhos from German attack. The association which led in later years to the Polish Resettlement Corps using the site to house Polish soldiers, sailors and airmen who chose not to return to communist Poland. To this day, part of RAF Penrhos is in use as an old people's home for elderly Poles.

RAF Hell's Mouth 5 miles to the south west was commissioned in February 1937 as a Relief Landing Ground, later an Emergency landing Ground for RAF Penrhos.

The following units were posted here at some point:

During the late 1980s privately owned aircraft used to land here during the summer on a 400-yard tarmac strip.[5]

Current use[edit]

Part of the site is now Pen-y-berth caravan park.



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s "Penrhos". Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust. Retrieved 15 December 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Smith3 1990, p. 134.
  3. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 44.
  4. ^ Jefford 1988, p. 79.
  5. ^ a b Smith3 1990, p. 135.


External links[edit]