Haunted Blackpool – Hangar 42

Although it has served many purposes over the years, these days, Hangar 42 at Blackpool Airport is the home to the Lytham St Annes Spitfire team. There are a number of volunteers who work there and many visitors visit the Hangar on open days. Both volunteers and visitors have told of some pretty strange things going on in the building.

History of the Airport

The site where Blackpool Airport currently stands was first used for flights from October 1909. Although it was used as a racecourse by 1911 and then a military hospital during the First World War, it had reopened for flights during the 1930s. Prior to the 1930s, there was an aerodrome where Blackpool Zoo currently is although all flight services were transferred to Blackpool Airport by the mid 1930s.

Amy Johnson in her aircraft in 1930

Notably, Amy Johnson lived in nearby Stanley Park and often flew her aircraft from the Airport. It was from the site where Blackpool Airport, and Hangar 42 is that Amy Johnson took her final flight.

Wartime Blackpool and RAF Use

During the Second World War, the airport was used by the Air Ministry. Runways were built especially to support military operations and there were RAF squadrons who were actually stationed in Squires Gate close to the airport.

As there was such ample accommodation in Blackpool, the RAF chose the town to be a major training centre and personnel were based at Squires Gate as well as Weeton and Kirkham which are both nearby. The RAF made use of many of Blackpool’s tourism resources such as the guest houses, beach, pier and Winter Gardens for many of their training exercises. There were also 2 training schools that were established by the RAF to deliver training. It is estimated that there were over 12,000 men and women who worked for the RAF at Squires Gate during the Second World War.


A Wellington Bomber takes to the Blackpool skies


During the war, Blackpool Airport offered night fighter cover across the Fylde Coast and Merseyside. During these missions, 68 RAF personnel lost their lives.

Hangar 42 and its Ghosts

Blackpool Airport was owned by the local council until the 2000s The airport had begun to lose it’s popularity as it struggled to compete with larger airports such as Manchester and Liverpool that offered low cost passenger flights and locals were traveling to those airports to fly. Eventually, Blackpool Council were losing around £1m a year and so they sold the airport on. The airport is now closed to commercial flights although some pleasure flights do still run locally. Hangar 42 is used by the Lytham St Annes Spitfire Ground Display Team and open days are held to enable members of the public to see the aircraft up close.

With so many service men and women who sadly lost their lives during the war, it is not surprising that ghosts have been spotted in this location. Some have told of figures who they have seen standing in the hangar, thinking that they were models or volunteers in costume, but in reality, no one should have been there and the ghostly figures disappear all of a sudden. In empty rooms in the Hangar, volunteers have said that they have heard eerie whispers. There have even been people who have claimed to have been tapped on the shoulder or back when there was no one else there.