No. 5 Bombing & Gunnery School:
by Bruce Forsyth (www.militarybruce.com), with permission
Opened on 7 January 1941 north of Dafoe as part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. The school closed on 11 January 1945, having trained 131,553 aircrew.
The former station property is now used for farming. The only building that remains is one of the hangars, now used for agricultural equipment storage. The only other remnants are the other hangar pads, the gunnery backstop and the crumbling roadways and airfield. The property owner still uses a portion of the old airfield as a private aerodrome.
(Ed note: Nos. 2 & 5 B&GS were the only two that had swimming pools, and the reason is rather interesting. Both were relatively isolated and an adequate source of water for firefighting purposes was needed. The RCAF decided that, rather than just building big cisterns, they might just as well build swimming pools, to the delight I’m sure of the bombers and gunners.)
Source Material: Dafoe web site – http://www.quill-lakes.com/dafoe/dafoehistory.htm, information provided by Vintage Wings – www.vintagewings.ca & information supplied by Jim McDougall, McDougall Agencies (2001).
The following perished while serving at No. 5 B&GS: J Barnes, RC Chappell, CA Coles, DA Colvin, TBR Crosthwaite, RK Crothers, EJ Daniels, WW Dorrell, EH Dunn, RE Fox, PE Galgan, JGR Harries, EP Harris, R Hemingway, G Horst, LC Jansonn, H Loewen, CM McKenzie, JA Menelly, WD Mitchell, WR Moisley, RI Morgan, S Newton, EJ Schultz, FW Selfe, TJ Sugrue and E Walsh.