Historic hangar demolished at Norfolk airbase
- Credit: SAC Craig Williams RAF
A historic aircraft hangar has been demolished as work continues to modernise Norfolk's main RAF base.
Number 1 Hangar at RAF Marham was built in the late 1930s and housed heavy bombers during the Second World War.
The structure, which most recently housed the RAF's Tornado jets, has now been demolished to make way for new accommodation for the F-35 Lightning stealth bomber.
Bricks from the demolition of the Hangar will be re-purposed and used in a heritage wall that will be built were the recently-removed Victor gate guardian stood. The aircraft was scrapped after no-one came forward to adopt it.
The wall will commemorate each aircraft type that has been based at RAF Marham since it first opened in 1916, many of which will have been housed in the hangar over time.
Demolishing the hangar took just over two months with 90pc of the rubble recycled. With the hangar located in close proximity to the runway it was imperative that the risk of materials being blown onto the runway was minimised. As well as special netting erected around the whole site Anglian Demolition used a water spray throughout the demolition process ensuring no particles blew across to the runway.
RAF Marham station commander Group Capt James Beck viewed the ground and met with the contractors before the site was completely cleared. He said “This is a bittersweet moment for me. I started my flying career in this Hangar as a young Flight Lieutenant as part of IX(B) Squadron flying the Tornado so there are definitely lots of memories here. However, in my current role as the station commander and as a pilot of the F-35 Lightning I can see the future with the start of the next phase of building that is taking place to support the Lightning programme and the exciting times ahead for the station.”
Chris Seymour, RAF Marham project manager from Lockheed Martin said “Providing world class maintenance and training capabilities for the UK’s F-35 Lightning fleet is critical to the security of the UK and this next phase of infrastructure marks an important milestone in our continual commitment to the readiness and sustainment of the F-35 and its operations worldwide.”