Air Landing Ground advanced to a three runway airfield mostly by the intervention and foresight of II(AC) Squadrons Commanding Officer Wing Commander Geddes.
The buildings remaining on the airfield form part of Shingle Hall Farm. This was the technical site of the airfield where essential maintenance was carried out. It was here that the Watch Office, T2 Hangar, stores, armoury and many other buildings were situated. The Watch office or control tower was demolished in 1946, The airfields runways were all taken up in the same year to clear the land back to agriculture.
Shingle Hall Technical site has the most buildings remaining, these include the following buildings..
Fabric Store (9096\41)
The Main Stores
Right: Electrical Sub Station(13241\41)
Below: Parachute Store (7865\39)
Right: fire Tender Shed
Right: Gas Clothing and Respirator Store(12409\41)
The concrete perimeter track runs around the entire airfield site, On its northern side it cuts around the edge of Mathams Wood and it is here that it retains its original full width, Mathams Wood was the name chosen to identify the ALG when the site first became operational in the First World War.
There is an Ordnance Survey Trig point just inside the wood, not far from this is the Battle Headquarters, the underground bunker that would have co-ordinated the defences of the airfield should it have came under attack by enemy ground forces after an invasion. The BHQ has been flooded for as long as I can remember.
Around the outer edge of the perimeter track there are some other remains of the airfields defences. A rare find in an airfield is a spigot mortar position. Spigot mortars were usually a home guard weapon. It may be that because the local home guard were involved with the defence of the airfield, that it is the sole reason why such a position can be found on the site.
The Blacker Bombard was a 29mm anti-tank mortar and usually mounted on a circular plinth made from Concrete. The mortar itself was fived on a stainless steel spigot and this is how it derived its name.
Sawbridgeworths example was mounted not on a concrete plinth, but in a pit. The pit exists today on the edge of a field close to the perimeter track.
Also to be found in the immediate area are the filled in remains of a line of defensive brick slit trenches. These are similar to those found at Hunsdon. In the same hedgeline are two Pillboxes and these are about 200 yards apart. Further pillboxes can be found near the Battle HQ in the treeline and another very near the new airfield memorial although this is hidden by dense undergrowth and is practically invisible.
Pillbox in the treeline in Mathams Wood.
Other small square shelters are evident. One just beyond the pillbox on the Hadham Road, one on the road between Allens Green and the Hadham road and another on the back lane that connects Beanfield Road and Sacombes Ash Lane.
On the hadham Road there are two small lay by's, this was once the intersection where the
secondary runway crossed the then closed Hadham road.
There are four square shelter type buildings that are found only on the approach roads to the airfield. One is on the left of the road from Allens Green, and next to Sacombe Ash Lane, the next is just past the modified pillbox on the Hadham road, Two more can be found and these are at the junction with Hadham road at Trimms Green, and on the un-named track that runs from South of Trimms Green across to Sacombes Ash Lane.
The Signals block stands in a small field next to farm buildings at the side of the drive of Shingle Hall itself.
The last portion of surviving 'Blenheim' type or FCW4513 Aircraft Pen
The perimeter track at Sawbridgeworth has always been a little on the rutted side, even in wartime as Doug Reich remembered. Two views of it today, one section near Mathams and the other towards Allens Green near Blounts Farm