ALG A-14 – Cretteville – Airfields in Normandy

ALG A-14 – Cretteville

Battle of Normandy

This page presents the history of ALG (Advanced Landing Groud) A-14, used by the 9th United States Air Force during the Battle of Normandy.

Image : 9th Air Force

9th United States Air Force

Location: Cretteville, Manche (50)

Code: A-14

Coordinates: 49°20’14”N – 01°22’49”W

Construction: from June 23 to July 4, 1944 by the 819th Engineer Aviation Battalion (EAB)

Operational period: from July 4th to November 5th, 1944

Airstrip: Prefabricated Bituminous Surfacing (PBS) extended by compacted earth

PBS airstrip

Length: 1 097,28 m (3 600 feet)

Width: 36,57 m (120 feet)

Azimuth: 44°

Compacted earth track

Length: 426,72 m (1 400 feet)

Width: 36,57 m (120 feet)

Azimuth: 44°

Units:

– 358th Fighter Group “Orange Tails” (365th Fighter Squadron, 366th Fighter Squadron, 367th Fighter Squadron) using P-47 Thunderbolt until August 15, 1944.

– 367th Fighter Group (393rd Fighter Squadron) using P-38 Lightning.

– 406th Fighter Group (512th Fighter Squadron, 513th Fighter Squadron, 514th Fighter Squadron) using P-47 Thunderbolt.

ALG A-14 history:

The ALG A-14 runway, located between the towns of Cretteville and Houtteville in the English Channel, is initially planned to measure 3,600 feet (1,097.28 meters). The Allies decide to cover it with PBS (Prefabricated Bituminous Surfacing), also known as “Hessian Mat”: it is a solid coating composed of layers of bitumen and Hessian fabric whose installation is particularly meticulous and requires use of special machines. The PBS makes it possible to avoid the negative effects of the mud and the dust. The pilots and the command of the 358th, 367th and 406th Fighter Groups settle in the dependences of the castle of Franquetot, itself located on the ground of the airfield.

Remains:

– Commemorative stele along the departmental road 267, one kilometer west of Houtteville.

– Memorial steles in memory of the 358th Fighter Group and the 406th Fighter Group on the facade of the Castle of Franquetot in Coigny.