The MONAB Story

A history of the mobile airfields of the Royal Navy



Post-War reserve MONABs

Composite Reserve MONABs

RNAS Takali, Malta

RAF Takali was transferred to the Admiralty on loan in April 1945 and plans were made to operate the station using four Dorland portable hangars which were to be erected for use as maintenance hangars. Workshop facilities were to be provided by a ‘Mobile Workshop Unit’ (an MSR?) using existing hardstandings and huts. Stocks of equipment and tents were built-up during 1946, after the operational units in Australia had been disbanded, to form a composite MONAB. These were held in storage against the need to reactivate a MONAB in the Med or North Africa. RNAS Takali was reduced to Care & Maintenance status in 1947 and finally paid off in June 1953 and returned to RAF custody. It is assumed that the reserve MONAB was present during the period on C&M but was dispersed by the time the station was paid off.

RNAS Trincomalee, Ceylon

Stocks of equipment and tents were built-up during 1946, after the operational units in Australia had been disbanded, to form a composite MONAB held in storage at RNAS Trincomalee against the need to reactivate a MONAB in the Far East. The date for the disbandment of the Reserve unit is unclear

Enhanced Reserve MONAB

RNAS Sembawang, Singapore

This unit was the decommissioned MONAB IX, with had re-opened Sembawang airfield in October 1945, with additional equipment and tents added to form an enhanced reserve MONAB. Much of the original workshop equipment was in use at RNAS Sembawang for several years, before a new building programme made them unnecessary. The date for the disbandment of the Reserve unit is unclear.

Radar workshop, Sembawang

The containerised radio and radar workshops of MONAB IX still in use at Sembawang in 1946

 

 

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