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HayateAce
02-05-2008, 08:57 PM
The uncertain future of Bentley Priory

A sad controversy is developing around the fate of RAF Bentley Priory near Stanmore in northern London. The grandiose and historically significant estate, owned by the RAF since 1926 and most remembered as Air Chief Marshal Dowding's Command Headquarters during the Battle of Britain, has been sold. The buyer is the development company VSM Estates which has the intention of converting the mansion to luxury apartments. Further residential buildings are planned in its gardens.



RAF Bentley Priory Officers' Mess [Photo Gme7]
This sale is a part of restructuring programme conducted by the Ministry of Defence whereupon six RAF sites will be disposed of and the new headquarters established in RAF Northolt. Stations to be closed and sold include Uxbridge, Bentley Priory, Eastcote and West Ruislip.

The three remaining RAF lodgers at Bentley Priory - the Defence Aviation Safety Centre (DASC), the Air Historical Branch and RAF Ceremonial are scheduled to move to Northolt in February 2008 and the possession vacated by the end of April.



Formal closing ceremony of RAF Bentley Priory, 19 July 2007 [Photo David Whiting]
The problem is that the historic significance of Bentley Priory exceeds that of any other RAF property on the sales list. Built in 1766 and extended in 1788 by Sir John Soane, Bentley Priory is most widely recognized as the headquarters of Fighter Command during World War II. The offices of Air Chief Marshal Dowding are still there, with his leather-topped desk, many of his papers and other effects.


More HERE (http://www.spitfiresite.com/blog/) below the story on Bam.

HayateAce
02-05-2008, 08:57 PM
The uncertain future of Bentley Priory

A sad controversy is developing around the fate of RAF Bentley Priory near Stanmore in northern London. The grandiose and historically significant estate, owned by the RAF since 1926 and most remembered as Air Chief Marshal Dowding's Command Headquarters during the Battle of Britain, has been sold. The buyer is the development company VSM Estates which has the intention of converting the mansion to luxury apartments. Further residential buildings are planned in its gardens.



RAF Bentley Priory Officers' Mess [Photo Gme7]
This sale is a part of restructuring programme conducted by the Ministry of Defence whereupon six RAF sites will be disposed of and the new headquarters established in RAF Northolt. Stations to be closed and sold include Uxbridge, Bentley Priory, Eastcote and West Ruislip.

The three remaining RAF lodgers at Bentley Priory - the Defence Aviation Safety Centre (DASC), the Air Historical Branch and RAF Ceremonial are scheduled to move to Northolt in February 2008 and the possession vacated by the end of April.



Formal closing ceremony of RAF Bentley Priory, 19 July 2007 [Photo David Whiting]
The problem is that the historic significance of Bentley Priory exceeds that of any other RAF property on the sales list. Built in 1766 and extended in 1788 by Sir John Soane, Bentley Priory is most widely recognized as the headquarters of Fighter Command during World War II. The offices of Air Chief Marshal Dowding are still there, with his leather-topped desk, many of his papers and other effects.


More HERE (http://www.spitfiresite.com/blog/) below the story on Bam.

smokincrater
02-05-2008, 09:38 PM
Its a pity to see such grand buildings go. I surppose its a sign of the times that propetry be brought and sold to make a quick buck at the expense of history.

Aaron_GT
02-06-2008, 09:51 AM
The building will still be there. It's not like they are knocking it down. It existed before the RAF did, and will exist for a long time hence.