Plaque

Camp Griffiss, Block A, SW corner

Erection date: 6/6/1994

Inscription

{On the left side:}
This is the site of the south west corner of “A” block, Camp Griffiss, headquarters of the 8th USAAF from June 1942 and afterwards of the USSAFE from January 1944.
{On the right side: a Stars and Stripes above a blank area.}

Site: Camp Griffiss, all - Block A, NW corner (15 memorials)

TW11, Bushy Park

There were 16 of these open-book style ground plaques, marking the corners of blocks A - D, the 4 main large blocks of buildings in WW2 Camp Griffiss. We found a very helpful document from the Friends of Bushy and Home Park, which tells that the plaques were unveiled on 6 June 1994 as part of the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

Block A was the first to be completed and became the headquarters of the US 8th Air Force under General Spatz when he arrived in June 1942. Block B was completed soon after block A and initially became the headquarters of the 8th Air Force Service Command, dealing with maintenance, supply and ancillary services. Service Command personnel were housed in the former Kings Canadian School at Upper Lodge in the north-west corner of the park where upgraded facilities housed 1,000 men.

Block C housed three functions: the western end housed the officers’ mess fitted out by Bentalls of Kingston. The office of Air Marshall Tedder, the Deputy Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force was in the north-east corner, SHAEF having moved into Camp Griffiss in January 1944.

The office of the Supreme Commander, General Eisenhower, was in the south-east corner of the block and here D-Day was planned.

Block D was the last of the four blocks to be completed, being ready for occupation on 13 March 1943.

The inscriptions on the plaques for blocks A, B and D are all the same, other than the “.. north east corner of ‘A’ block ..” sections. The inscriptions on the plaques for block C are all the same, other than the “.. north east corner ..” sections.

London Remembers’ seven-strong team of hardened plaque-hunters spent a happy Sunday afternoon surveying the Camp Griffiss site, finding and photographing 14 of the supposed 16 open book plaques. At the location where we expected to find the plaque for block D south-west corner, we found a deep hole about the right size and shape to have held a plaque. Did a sink hole eat the plaque or did someone nick it? Either way it was the low-point of the day.

The other location where we failed to find a plaque was block C, south-east corner. This is where the SHAEF memorial was placed, the inscription of which contains: “On this spot stood the office of General Dwight D Eisenhower …”. We think the organisers of the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of D-Day decided that they would place the SHAEF memorial at this spot instead of just one more open book plaque. It would be interesting to know if the open book plaque was made, and if so, where it ended up.

Our pin for Camp Griffiss is at the location of the north-west corner of block A. This is the first plaque you come across if you approach the site along the path from Chestnut Avenue. Given that one of the plaques has already gone missing we decided not to assist other thieves by plotting all the plaques for them.

This section lists the subjects commemorated on the memorial on this page:
Camp Griffiss, Block A, SW corner

Subjects commemorated i

Normandy Landings / D-Day

The landings, also known as Operation Neptune, were the landing operations in...

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Camp Griffiss / Widewing

WW2 US military base in Bushy Park named after the first American aviator kil...

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USAAF - European HQ

The HQ of the United States Army Air Forces moved from London to Camp Griffis...

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This section lists the other memorials at the same location as the memorial on this page:
Camp Griffiss, Block A, SW corner

Also at this site i

Camp Griffiss, Block A, NE corner

Camp Griffiss, Block A, NE corner

{On the left side:} This is the site of the north east corner of "A" block, C...

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Camp Griffiss, Block A, NW corner

Camp Griffiss, Block A, NW corner

{On the left side:} This is the site of the north west corner of “A” block, C...

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Camp Griffiss, Block A, SE corner

Camp Griffiss, Block A, SE corner

{On the left side:} This is the site of the south east corner of “A” block, C...

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Camp Griffiss, Block B, NE corner

Camp Griffiss, Block B, NE corner

{On the left side:} This is the site of the north east corner of "B" block, C...

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Camp Griffiss, Block B, NW corner

Camp Griffiss, Block B, NW corner

{On the left side:} This is the site of the north west corner of "B" block, C...

Read More

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