Construction of the airfield
began in 1942 and was originally developed to counter the German and Japanese submarine
threat, though its first role was a bomber O.T.U. The first aircraft landed at the base in
February 1946 and in 1947 flying training began on Harvards and Venturas. The first
Spitfires arrived in 1948 and were used to train pilots to more advanced aircraft. The
base was also home to the Air Navigation School.
The first Vampires (first jet aircraft in the SAAF)
arrived in October 1952 and the Advanced Flying School was founded. From then on until
1967 advanced flying training was offered on Harvards and Vampires. During January 1953
the Air Navigation School was transferred to Ysterplaat.
In 1966, Impalas arrived and
ab initio flying
training took place in 1968. On the 28th May 1983 FTS Langebaanweg
was renamed AFB Langebaanweg and 80 Air Navigation School returned after an absence of 30
years. The flying training wing was then renamed 83 Jet Flying School. In March
1985, 7 Squadron was deployed.
The base was also home to the Silver Falcons, the
SAAFs aerobatic team while 526 Protection Squadron became part of the base in
August 1988. 80 Air Navigation School was transferred during 1990 to D.F. Malan Airport in
CapeTown, after a stay of 8 years.
In December 1992, 83 Jet Flying School and 7
Squadron were closed and the Harvards returned to Langebaanweg after the closure of CFS
Dunnottar. On the 1st of January 1993, the unit was renamed Central Flying
In 1995 the Harvards were phased out and the PC 7 Mk
II (Astra) arrived at the unit to become the ab initio flying trainer of the SAAF.
During 2002 AFB Langebaanweg became a GSB, providing
services to the military community on the West Coast as well as lodger units on the base.
CFS becames a FSE on AFB Langebaanweg responsible for ab initio flying training and
flying instructor training for the SAAF.