The remains of Beaulieu Airfield are situated on a large and expansive heathland. You can quite easily spend a whole day walking the heath to see different aspects. Whilst my focus is the military occupation of this area, sometimes you find a spot that deserves a special mention; Two Bridges Bottom Pond is one such place.
I recently discovered this pond whilst documenting the airfield as part of my RAF Beaulieu project. The pond is situated to the southwest of the main airfield area, about a 15-minute walk or so from the gravel perimeter track – you can see the location on my progress map.
It’s possible to walk there by following a trail that has been trodden in the past, but I would recommend you go in the summer when the heath is drier – it gets very wet and boggy otherwise.
You will find Two Bridges Bottom Pond next to a clump of trees. The setting makes it possibly the most peaceful location I have found so far that’s near to the old Beaulieu Aerodrome site.
What I also love about it is there’s a seat for just one person right on the water’s edge. If like me, you like to explore the airfield or are following my progress with your own walks, it makes for a welcome pitstop.
After discovering the pond, I was told by a local man who was a boy during the war, that Two Bridges Bottom Pond is located just south of where the Beaulieu Airfield fence was. Apparently the single seat was once used for “duck flighting” in the past.
The romantic in me would like to think that during wartime airmen might have walked here for some peace and quiet. Or perhaps a couple of WAAFs might have brought their lunch to the pond to get away from the bustle of the accommodation areas at Roundhill Campsite.
I have no evidence to say they did, but if they knew about it, I am sure some of them will have enjoyed visiting and sitting at Two Bridges Bottom Pond to collect their thoughts.