Located near Brandon, Bury St Edmunds, Cambridgeshire, USAF Lakenheath is the largest US Air Force (USAF) base in the UK, with some 4,600 personnel. Covering 2.8 square miles, it is larger in acreage and personnel than Britain’s own largest base, at RAF Brize Norton.
The first F-35A fighters are due to arrive in Lakenheath in December 2021. (Source: East Anglia Daily Times)
The F-35A fighters are being modified to make them capable of carrying nuclear payloads. (Source:AirForce Times) 27 October 2021.
The first of approximately 54 US F-35As are due to arrive at Lakenheath later this year. The associated construction works have been delayed and are apparently about 25 percent over the initial $480 million budget. (Source Defense News 6 August 2020)
F-35s have recently dropped mock nuclear bombs during training flights. (Source Cornwall Live 24 June 2021)
‘“Not all aircraft will become nuclear-capable upon full certification,” the [US] Air Force said. “Only those units with a nuclear mission will be given the hardware and manpower necessary to configure and maintain nuclear-capable F-35s.”
‘That could include RAF Lakenheath in England’.
A $9.4m contract for designing, building and installing F-35A aircraft shelters, to be completed by 2022 was awarded in May to a US company. (Source Times of San Diego 8 May 2021)