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    Diego Garcia Seaplane Base (AFB 29)  Republic of Diego Garcia
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RAF April 30, 1946

Location
Located in the lagoon off Diego Garcia. During 1944, supporting base facilities were constructed on East Point.

Construction
During 1944, 29th Advance Flyingboat Base 29 (AFB 29) with detachment from Royal Air Force (RAF) 205 Squadron and 240 Squadron based on Ceylon operated from Diego Garcia. Base facilities including a radio station and weather station were established at East Point.

Wartime History
On May 1941 a Catalina piloted by 1st Lt. Alex Jardine landed in the lagoon, the first Allied flying boat to land at Diego Garcia during the war. Next, during March 1942 a PanAm "Capetown Clipper" flying boat landed in the lagoon carrying Lt. Col Herman H. Pohl, US Army Corps of Engineers and his subordinate who toured the island to assess the feasibility of building an airfield Eclipse Point.

During the war, Catalinas and Sunderlands used Diego Garcia to refuel while transiting between Ceylon, India and Australia. Also, the base was used to search for enemy submarines or perform search and rescue missions.

On April 30, 1946 the last Sunderland RN 289 piloted by Don Newman departed Diego Garcia departed with the last eleven men from the seaplane base.

Today
Disused since the war, the operations building and other facilities associated with the base remain in use.

References
Operations record book of No. 205 Squadron, July 1944 "the facilities at Diego Garcia are still very inadequate; insufficient personnel, insufficient marine craft and bad living conditions"
Peak of Limuria The Story of Diego Garcia pages 68-72

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Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

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