Vechta

Validation date: 20 12 2010
Updated on: Never
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52°43'47"N 008°15'31"E


Airport Vechta (german: Flugfeld Vechta) was a civilian airfield constructed a few hundred meters west of the citadel of Vechta in Vechta, Germany
After the National-Socialist takeover in the early 1930s the Luftwaffe laid its eyes on the arifield, and they became owner in 1939.


To the northeast of the airfield barracks were built, and south of them the aviation facilities (air traffic control, hangars and maintenance buildings) were constructed.
The entire complex was connected to the national railway grid.
The at the time usual triangle of runways was not considered, instead a single 600 meter concrete runway was built, for a second only the groundwork was performed.
Vechta was codenamed "Schwebebahn"
Some 3 kilometers (2 miles) to the south a munitions depot was built, and to distract Allied pilots several false airfields were laid out in the area around Vechta.
Due to more advanced aviation designs the runway had to be lengthened soon, and a 600 meter extension was constructed, giving a total of 1200meters.
The regional road to Vechta was diverted around the lengthened runway.


Little is known about units that were stationed at the base.
Like so many bases different units used the airfield during the war, including Attack and Fighter Wings.
Lasting postings were by nightfighters, which were based at many suitable airfields throughout northwestern Germany to counter Allied bomber raids.
Vechta became home to I Group of Night Fighter Wing 3 (I.Gruppe/Nachtjagdgeschwader3) in October 1940 until August 1944, flying Messerschmidt Bf110 and later Do217 and Ju88C.
From January until March 1945 I./NJG4 operated from the field.
In March 1945 heavy air attacks by Allied bombers severely wrecked the air field, ending all flight operations.


After the war local farmers took over the airfield grounds and turned them into crop fields
The baracks and many other buildings were demoolished, and on the eastern site of the airfield houses were built after a few years.
The Bundeswehr used part of the workshop area as a support facility, and later as a medical support station.
A few hundred meters from this location a POL facitlity
At the end of the Cold War, during the 1990s the Bundeswehr abandoned the sites one by one.
The buildings were torn down, and replaced with housing and industrial areas.
Today not a trace of the former airfield is left, only reminders are two streetnames in the immediate area:
"Alter Flugplatz" and "Beim Alter Flugplatz".






Location of the runway of airfield Vechta