Country: United Kingdom Region: Suffolk
Locale: NE Bury St Edmunds
Latitude: 52° 18' 38" N Longitude: 0° 55' 23" E
Area use / Military Branches: Closed
Former RAF Sheperds Grove was built in WW2.In the early 1950's used by USAF until 1956, returned to RAF and converted into a Thor IRBM site which was used until base closure in 1966.
This Special Ammo Storage was used in the 1950s and 1960s for MK5 bombs for USAFE Sculthorpe units and later for Thor W-49 missile warheads.
In 1956, RAF 1 Strategic Msl Grp/82 Squadron activated at Shepherds Grove as a Thor missile unit. See Feltwell for more information about the Thor missile system.
The nuclear storage dates from 1957 and was under USAF 1st Tac. Depot Sqn det #8. The area was originally double fenced and guarded 24/7. Dogs patrolled between the fences when dark and when visibility was reduced. There were 2 watch towers, one inside and one outside the perimeter fence, which were manned at all times, as was the gate picket.
The 2 large bunkers (N-side) were for the major part of the warheads - in the case of Shepherds Grove these were first Mk7's and later Mk28's.
The 3rd smaller bunker (S-side) was used for nuclear component storage. The bunker is about half as long as the main stores and contained a concrete safe. The largest other building is a building on a single story, used for maintenance. There was also a Nissen hut for general storage and for painting the weapon casings.
Closed and now private property.
Search for RAF IRBM Sheperds Grove