The airfield was opened in the 1930s by Carlisle County Borough Council and known as Kingstown Municipal Airport. It was built in open countryside to the north of Carlisle, although today the site has been encircled by modern developments. It was a typical grass field aerodrome with no hard runways. Although used by the Border Flying Club as its home base, the new airfield proved unprofitable and the council were glad to sell it to the Air Ministry in 1936.
The ministry remodelled the airfield, installing concrete taxiways and building new hangars and administrative buildings. The new station was opened as RAF Kingstown on 26 September 1938, becoming home to two operational squadrons flying Fairey Battle bombers.
With the outbreak of war, the airfield was already proving too small for the latest operational aircraft, and the Air Ministry began constructing a new airfield for the RAF at Crosby-on-Eden.
Instead of being closed, RAF Kingstown was retained by the RAF and converted to No 24 Elementary Flying Training School (EFTS) flying Tiger Moths and Miles Magisters. The site was put into care and maintenance at the end of the war.
Today the site is a large industrial estate, dominated by car showrooms.
Image credit – Dumfries & Galloway Aviation Museum collection