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Author Topic: Airfield Bombing Decoy Q49A  (Read 1692 times)

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Airfield Bombing Decoy Q49A
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2014, 22:03:23 »
A Second World War bombing decoy located at Lenham. It was built to deflect enemy bombing from RAF Detling airfield and also served as a decoy for Maidstone. This site operated as a 'K-type' day decoy and a 'Q-type' night decoy. The 'K-type' decoy consisted of a replica airfield equipped with dummy Blenheim aircraft. It was operational from early 1940 until 27th June 1941, when it was shut down as it had had become recognised as a decoy. The 'Q-type' decoy featured a series of lights, which when viewed at night resembled an active airfield. This decoy was in operation between 1940 and 1942. By 1942 the Lenham site also functioned as a 'QF' site for RAF Detling and as a 'Temporary Starfish' site for the town of Maidstone. As a 'QF' and 'Temporary Starfish' decoy, controlled fires were lit at night during an air raid to simulate an airfield or town targeted by bombs. By the late 1980s the site had been given over to agricultural use. Two buildings associated with the decoy, along with the access road built during the war were reported as being extant in 2010. A further bombing decoy site for Maidstone was located at Broomfield, 'Starfish Bombing' Decoy SF66B.

Action Stations 9. by C Ashworth; adds that the decoy was bombed on the 22 June 1940 and again in January/February 1944.
The decoy may have been responsible for the loss of a No 49 Squadron Hampden which force-landed at Lenham on October 17 1940, killing one crew member and injuring three. 
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