Base / Station: MacDonald

 

Period of Information: 1941 – 1945, 1946-?

 

Integral Units:

  • No. 3 Bombing and Gunnery School
  • No. 2 Advanced Flying School
  • No. 1 Pilots Weapon School

  • No. 4 Advanced Flying Training School

 

Unit Duties / Information: No. 3 Bombing and Gunnery School was opened March 10, 1941 to train Air Observers (navigators/bombaimers and wireless operators) the techniques of air to air firing. Navigators/Bombaimers also received training for carrying out bombing missions. All practical training was done on the accompanying bombing and gunnery ranges. Initially, the station used the obsolete Battle aircraft for all aspects of training but, in 1942, they received the Anson for bombing training, the Bolingbroke for gunnery training, and the Lysander for towing the drogues (targets) for gunnery training.

The base was home to No. 2 Advanded Flying School. This school was responsible for pilots’   advanced flying training. NEED AN OPENING DATE??

 PURPOSE OF NO. 1 PWS AND OPENING DATE?? COULD BE A    CONTINUATION OF THE TRAINING PROVIDED BY THE BOMBING AND GUNNERY SCHOOL LOCATED AT MACDONALD UNDER THE BRITISH      COMM0NWEALTH AIR TRAINING PLAN??

July 22, 1956 No. 1 Pilots Weapon School was redesignated No. 4 Advanced Flying Training School. WHAT WAS THE PURPOSE OF THIS SCHOOL??

There was No. 2 Advanced Flying School located here – when was it formed – what was the final closing date of the base??

 

Aircraft Flown:

  • Battle (41-42),
  • Anson (42-45),
  • Bolingbroke (42- 45), and
  • Lysander (42-45)

 

Financial Impact: $1,842,475 (total cost of BCATP construction to 15 Mar 1942)

 

Commanding Officers:

 

Date / Reason for closure:

No. 3 Bombing and Gunnery School was closed February 17, 1945 as World War II neared its end and in preparation for the fact that the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan would not be renewed.

No. 2 Advanced Flying School was moved to Portage la Prairie November 15, 1952.

WHAT HAPPENED TO NO. 4 AFTS?? / NEED A FINAL  CLOSING DATE FOR THE BASE??

 

Current Status: abandoned airfield, runways dug up, most hangars and some base buildings still exist, owned by farming collective

 

Relevant links:

 

RCAF Aerodrome MacDonald, Manitoba. Image frome the RCAF Pilots Manual of Aerodromes and Seaplane Bases circa 1942.

Tracer - Station Magazine - MacDonald, Manitoba - No. 3 Bombing and Gunnery School

Tracer 1944-10 Station Magazine for MacDonald, Manitoba
Tracer 1944-11 Station Magazine for MacDonald, Manitoba