• Callums Night Photography

RAF Woodcote Maintenance Area

Updated: Jul 7

After seeing this place online back in 2016 i decided to head out and check the site out, as i got there the sun was going down and it was getting dark seeing as its in the middle of nowhere i had no fears but decided to do a bit of light painting.

When i arrived at the site there was 2 giant green gates with nothing stopping urbexers from getting in on either side of the gates with a 20ft pile of rubble, im guessing from the previous buildings which was on site which was demolished!

As i entered the site not knowing what i was walking onto i noticed a series of dumped derelict cars (im guessing the person who owns the site is into scrap metal), but that didnt put me off i carried on and explored the site for 30 mins, after i explored the site it seemed like it was safe to get the camera and tripod out and do some light painting.

The site is pretty interesting and the history behind it knowing it was part of the nearby Checkendon which i recently explored.

Further down the road from the Maintenance Area are Blast Shelters scattered across the woods on the side of Long Toll in Woodcote.

RAF Woodcote was home home to 70MU (maintenance Unit) from 1941 to 1959.

It initially served as an Equipment Dispersal depot to support the war effort.

The site was selected due to the number of wartime airfields in South Oxfordshire and the various

training sites in the area and along the River Thames. The woodland also provided perfect

camoflage from the air.

Four seperate sites were constructed and were located alongside country lanes.

Just a few roads away from here is the Former Checkendon Camp which use to be part of this base until it became a Italian POW Camp then later on a displacement camp.

Then a mile away from Woodcote you have the Former Bishopwood Camp in Gallowstree Common with plenty of hut bases and a Stanton Shelter and a Sewage Works Building. Kennylands Camp which was next door to Bishopwood Camp was demolished and there is not any remains standing.

Map Of RAF Woodcote Overall site Credit: http://www.mycetes.co.uk/

RAF Woodcote Headquarters site as you can see there was more buildings on site which have been demolished over the years Credit: http://www.mycetes.co.uk/

This image of the interior of a Stanton air raid shelter is borrowed from the handbook of The Defence of Britain Project that I used to help me identify buildings. The inside of the one at MU70 was exactly like this. You can see the entrance door in the background with the steps leading to the surface. In the roof above the camera man was a square brick built escape hatch. Credit : http://www.mycetes.co.uk/

This still stands on the site today!

Last is a short video i had recorded on my drone i recently bought and flew over the site before demolition starts in the coming months.


Callum Cromwell - Reading - United Kingdom - Callums Night Photography

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