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Blue plaque honour for naval air station

PUBLISHED: 16:46 26 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:16 03 July 2010

Anthony Carroll

Based in the former Mercury office building it helped defend the country from deadly Zeppelin raids in world war one.

And the vital role of Yarmouth's Royal Naval Air Station was recognised this week as a blue plaque was unveiled in honour of the men who protected the nation from the Kaiser's air force and navy.

Based in the former Mercury office building it helped defend the country from deadly Zeppelin raids in world war one.

And the vital role of Yarmouth's Royal Naval Air Station was recognised this week as a blue plaque was unveiled in honour of the men who protected the nation from the Kaiser's air force and navy.

The regional headquarters of the Royal Naval Air Service was based in Regent Street from 1913 to 1920 and during the war it co-ordinated the actions of 36 planes and 300 airmen and crew.

Crews were tasked with shooting down and harassing Zeppelin bombers, locating enemy U boats and torpedo boats and bombing the German coast.

And Henry Allingham, the world oldest man at 113, also received training at the Regent Street building.

On Monday former Rear Admiral Scott Lidbetter, who flew Royal Navy Sea harriers and captained the helicopter carrier HMS Ocean, unveiled the plaque.

Praising the role of the Yarmouth-based air station he said: “They were instrumental in harassing Zeppelins which had flown from the continent.

“I am delighted the Yarmouth headquarters is now emblazoned with a blue plaque.”

Yarmouth was one of eight RNAS stations created before world war one to combat any aerial menace. At the tail end of world war one the RNAS became part of the fledgling RAF.

During the war planes flew from South Denes in Yarmouth and from Hickling and were supported by supplementary landing grounds at Burgh Castle, Bacton and Covehythe.

The Yarmouth Local History and Archaeological Society installed the plaque at the building which is being converted in to three maisonettes and a retail unit.

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