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CLOSED Leavesden Aerodrome
Watford, England, United Kingdom

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Leavesden Aerodrome

I grew up yards from the end of the runway! Fabulous place to grow up. We spent hours as kids with our noses pressed against the fence, watching the comings and goings of the learner pilots, executive jets, helicopters and airships!! Barry Bowles once used it to test his fast car - and we were there watching! We lived a few doors away from Rolls Royce's Press Officer and he let us in. I still remember everything shaking as Concorde did a flypast at an airshow in 1986 - simply amazing and still one of my favourite planes.

From memory - a potted history. It used to be the King George V playing fields, gifted to the people of Watford by the Crown. The land was requisitioned during the First World War and turned into an airfield. The land was then 'given' to Rolls Royce who sold it off in 1994 for profit when they closed down their Small Engine Division and moved production elswhere. The local folk fought the two Councils involved (Three Rivers and Watford Borough) to stop the land sale from going through but were unsuccessful. The deed from the original gifting from the Crown had mysteriously disappeared from County Hall and so ownership of the land couldn't be proved. Very sad.

I no longer live in Leavesden but I still expect to see aircraft landing when I come up Courtlands Drive to get to my parents' house.

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Film lot

Leavesden, which hosted an important military Rolls-Royce factory during World War II, was taken over as a film lot in the 1990s:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leavesden_Film_Studios

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