US Navy’s only European World War Two land base where they masterminded Battle of the Atlantic is for sale for £250,000 with permission to be turned into five-bed home with gym, cinema, bar and library
- Site at Dunkeswell Airfield, Devon, was the only US Navy’s only land base in Europe during Second World War
- The buildings on the 10-acre estate served as the strategic operations hub for the Battle of the Atlantic
- It is now on the market for £250,000, with planning permission for it to be transformed into a family home
- Also has permission to build a gym, cinema, bar, dining room, library, games room and a garage for 12 cars
A sprawling site used as a US Navy base during the Second World War has gone on the market for £250,000.
The 10-acre site at Dunkeswell airfield, Devon, served as the US Navy’s only European land base during the war and served as the strategic hub for the Battle of the Atlantic.
Two of the derelict buildings on the estate already have planning permission to be transformed into a large five-bedroom family home, complete with a gym, cinema, bar and library.
Meanwhile a separate outbuilding is primed to be turned into a 12-car garage – making it the perfect purchase for even the biggest automobile enthusiast.
Derelict: The 10-acre site at Dunkeswell airfield, Devon, served as a strategic base for the US Navy during the Second World War. The collection of derelict buildings, pictured, is now on the market for £250,000
Room to grow: The site has planning permission for a five-bedroom family home, pictured in a computer-generated image, complete with a gym, cinema, bar and 12-car garage. It was bought by its current owners as a place to store classic cars
Former glory: US sailors at the base, which served as the US Navy’s only European land base during the Second World War
Strategy: The base was crucial in the masterminding the Allied forces movements during the Battle of the Atlantic
The decrepit buildings and parched grounds are a far cry from its Second World War glory days.
US sailors were based at the airfield as they worked on their strategy for the Battle of the Atlantic, a term coined by Sir Winston Churchill for the struggle merchant ships faced transporting supplies from Allied countries to the UK.
The Grade II-Listed Operations Block and Crew Briefing Room at the Davon base was also the nerve centre for US Navy operations in the Bay of Biscay area.
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By May 1945, almost 6,500 anti-submarine missions – principally in B24 Liberator bombers – were flown from Dunkeswell.
However after the war the Ministry of Defence sold off the airfield and over the years the historically significant buildings became dilapidated.
Full of potential: An artist’s impression of how the sprawling site could look as a large family home
Care and attention: The site was previously inaccessible before being cleared of brambles by its current owners
Historic: The Operations Block is the most substantial of the three buildings and adjoins the Administration Block
Transformation: The two main buildings have permission to be transformed into a 4,800sq/ft family home
Five years ago the site was bought by a couple who wanted somewhere to keep their classic car collection. At the time there was no direct access to the building which were surrounded by 6ft high brambles.
After agreeing to buy the plot, they spent the next 12 months clearing the trees, bramble and nettles.
Planning permission was granted for the buildings to be converted into a five-bedroom home with three bathrooms, a gym, cinema, bar, library, games room and a garage for 12 cars.
The Operations Block is the most substantial of the three buildings and adjoins the Administration Block.
Planning permission has been granted for the conversion of the Operations and Administration Blocks to create the 4,800sq/ft family home with three bathrooms, a gym, cinema, bar, library and a games room.
Fallen behind: After the MOD sold off the airfield and over the years the historically significant buildings became dilapidated
Dreaming big: The site, pictured, also has access to the adjoining airfield and could be perfect for an enthusiast
Country living: The historically-significant site is located in a beautiful area of the Devon countryside, pictured
In addition, there is a third building of about 2,300 sq/ft, which operated as a Crew Briefing Room.
It has planning permission to be converted into a large garage with parking for approximately 12 cars. There are also two bunkers.
The current owners are now selling the development site through Savills for ‘in excess of £250,000’.
Chris Clifford, of Savills Exeter, said: ‘It is a very unusual opportunity and we think it is something that would appeal to an enthusiast, whether they are a historian or someone with a light aircraft who wants to use the adjoining airfield.
‘It offers space and privacy in pleasant rural surroundings and we have already got a number of viewings booked.’
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