World War 1

It was in August 1915 that the first steps were taken to establish the Royal Naval Air Station known as Milton and sometimes Pembroke. Two hundred and ninety eight acres were acquired to the south of Sageston and the A477, with the main road to Tenby forming the eastern boundary. Two corrugated iron hangers were erected to accommodate the airships with the first ascent taking place on April 25th, 1916 at 3.45pm under the control of Midshipman Colson and Commander Fuller. The airships were non-rigid “blimps”, with two types operating from the station, the smaller “SS” denoting Submarine Search and the “C” type for Coastal. Operating in the Western Approaches, Irish Sea and Bristol Channel the airships protected shipping and carried out submarine patrols. In April 1917 the first biplanes arrived in the form of Spowith 1 ½ Strutters and D.H. 6’s. Three canvas hangers were erected in front of Hazelbrook Farm for maintainance purposes and the first flight from the station was made by S/L. Allaway on April 25th, at 6.00pm. Sadly S/L. Allaway failed to return from a patrol in the August of that year. It was not until March 1920 that the last R.A.F. personnel left the station and the following years the buildings were sold by public auction at the Gatehouse Hotel in Tenby.