RNAS Henstridge, Dorset, was a former Second World War naval air station, HMS DIPPER, which was decommissioned on November 12th 1946. The station was held as a 'station in reserve on care & maintenance, at 6 months notice for reactivation'. The station being administered by HMS HERON, RNAS Yeovilton until 1949 when it was reactivated as a satellite airfield and was commissioned as HMS HERON II.


In September 1950 Henstridge was earmarked, along with RNAS' Worthy Down, Burscough, Crail, Evanton, and Fearn, as a possible location for the installation of a reconstituted MONAB X (now referred to as MONAB 10). Commander (P) L.J.S. EDE DSO, DSC (former Commanding Officer of the MNAO) was appointed as Commanding Officer of MONAB 10 In March 1951, and the unit began its forming up period at RNAS Lossiemouoth.


Henstridge was eventually chosen as the installation airfield and Confidential Admiralty Fleet Order (CAFO) 139/51 promulgated MONAB 10s activation, effective from September 7th 1951. It was the late spring of 1952 before the first components of MONAB 10 arrived at RNAS Yeovilton; MONAB 10 was installed at RNAS Henstridge by the autumn of that year. The exact nature of MONAB 10's activities at Henstridge are not clear, but most likely it was a form of 'preservation by operation' and an evaluation of the new MONAB for use in other conflicts.


It is believed that no flying operations were conducted by the unit, at the time of its arrival all operational flying units has moved to RNAS Yeovilton. MONAB 10 seems to have had a very short operational spell, the station was reduced to 'Care & Maintenance status at three months notice to re-open for use by MONAB 10' on January 23rd 1953. Areas of the airfield were allowed to return to agricultural use, buildings and hangars were retained for MONAB use. Equipment still installed at RNAS Henstridge was maintained on a daily basis, the majority of the MONAB equipment and vehicles were stored in hangers at RNAS Yeovilton for much of the time, being rolled out for maintenance and then returned to storage.


MONAB 10 was disbanded on July 2nd 1955; the unit disappears from records such as the Navy List after 1955. The equipment was still at Henstridge and Yeovilton until at least the end of 1955, maintained by a small retard party of 12 men who were bussed out from Yeovilton daily. The ultimate disposal of MONAB 10 is not known.














Back to top



 Last modified: 28 July 2016


Can you help?




Function :
Naval Air Station;

tender to RNAS Yeovilton November 1945 - August 1849 then

satellite to Yeovilton August 1949 - September 1952 and again October 1954 - June 1957

Commissioned :
 01 April 943 (as HMS DIPPER)

11 November1946 (as HMS HERON II)


Paid Off :
11 November1946 (as HMS DIPPER)

CLOSED June 1957



  • Captain D. Maclntyre ~ Dates not know



Click to access airfield history



View Larger Map