Schneidemühl

Validation date: 04 12 2015
Updated on: Never
Views: 1745
See on the interactive map:


53°10'10"N 016°46'10"E

Runway: flying field - 1280x1280m - grass

Schneidemühl airfield (German: Flugplatz Schneidemühl, also known as Schneidemühl Nord) was an airfield 300 kilometer west-northwest of Warsaw.
The airfield was established in 1913 as a military airfield with a single hangar. In the summer 1914, the whole area was taken under control by the military and from then to 1916 several new hangars and workshops were built. During World War I the airfield was used by Flieger-Ersatz-Abteilung 2 (FEA2, or Pilot Replacement Unit 2). 
The airfield also saw an airship hangar erected north of the barracks, with a radio operator shed southwest of the hangar and a hydrogen gas plant northeast of the barracks and S of the airship hangar. The heavier-than-air (= fixed wing aircraft) airfield, which was nicknamed "FEA-Platz" (FEA-field) was located east of it, while a large aircraft hangar (Grossflugzueug-Halle) was located to the northeast and flanked by two standard sheds to its northeast and another three to its southwest. 

The airship hangar was reportedly 184m long, 35m wide and 28m high. Another (rotating) hangar was projected, but never actually constructed. The airship station used the same flyingfield as the FEA, it was just located on the other side of the grass.


Schneidemühl in 1917 (photo via pennula.de)


This map does not cover the whole field, but the 'Werft' (maintainance hangar) with its two workshop buildings is quite typical for a WWI air station and can be easily identified (photo via pennula.de).


The German aviators' barracks in Schneidemühl -todays Piła-, Poland, February 1917. The building with the snow covered roof and the large building behind it still exist, the former having been lenghtened over the two buildings in front, located in the Wojciecha Kossaka. The building in the background is located in the Aleja Powstancow Wielkopolskich (de.Wikipedia.org).

Most of the FEA field was dismantled in 1919, following the Treaty of Versailles. It appears that only the small 1913 hangar and the maintainance hangar remained. After repeated attempts in 1920 and 1921 to get airline services to Schneidemühl had failed, its size was reduced to 400x600m. In 1927 it was registered as an emergency landing ground (Notlandeplatz) and used assuch by local aviators from Dec. 1931. The maintainance hangar was labelled 'Fea-Werke' on a 1936 map.

The airfield remained inactive until February 1945, when Ju52/3m transports briefly used it for nightly resupply/evacuation flights to beleaguered fortesses (Festungen) and other surrounded pockets. This ended on 14 February however, when Soviet forces captured the airfield.

Today, the location is built over with an industrial zone. The Philips Lighting company runs a major plant at the site.