is one of the oldest airfields in german history. The area todays
airfield is situated on, was evaluated by the emperial navy as early
as 1865. The first military installation was the Fort Holtenau,
which was build between 1867 and 1890. Its task was to defend Kiel's
Reichskriegshafen. Due to several constructions in the area, an
artifical peninsula arose from the Foerde and was chosen as one
of the first Seeflughafen of the German Navy. In 1913 a provisoric
runway was completed and the Marinefliegerstation ready for duty.
About a year later, the Marinefliegerabteilung of the Danziger Bucht
was transferred to Holtenau.
During the Great War, navy aircraft conducted observation missions
over the baltic, but were hardly envolved in military action against
After the end of World War I, Holtenau was declared an international
airtraffic center, which saved the airfield from destruction by
On 2nd december 1918 the naval air station returned to duty with
only ten aircraft in available.
A short while later, in march 1920, the allies ordered the destruction
of all remaining aircraft. A total of 41 airplanes fell victim to
this decision. On 9th september 1920 the Marineflieger were officially
Exactly two years later, Holtenau was incorporated into the city
of Kiel, thus receiving its current name of Kiel-Holtenau.
owned by the navy, major changes to the area were conducted in 1925.
The former Fort was dismanteled and a new airfield build instead.
In november 1927 the "Kieler Flughafen-Gesellschaft mbH" was founded
and the airport opened its gate on 23rd april 1928.
Military operations returned to Holtenau on 1st march 1937, when
Marinefliegerbordgruppe 196 was established. This airgroup was accompanied
by Traegergruppe 4./184 - the airgroup which was to equip the new
aircraft carrier "Graf Zeppelin". Eventually, the aircraft carrier
was never completed and the aircraft transferred to other combat
theatres (in case of the Bf 109T fighter aircraft Norway).
Moreover Goering ordered the Marineflieger to be incorporated into
the Luftwaffe on 27th january 1939.
serving primarily as a SAR base in World War II, Holtenau suffered
from heavy allied air attacks. Targeted were the naval shipyards
in Kiel harbour though.
Between 1945 and 1951 no german airplane operated from Holtenau.
The base was occupied by british forces, mainly Royal Engineers
and Royal Navy ship crews.
In 1951 the allies allowed glider activity and in 1955 permission
was given for motorized flight.
to Marineaufstellunsgbefehl Nr.41 - Marine - of 26th june 1956,
Kiel-Holtenau was chosen as the new Bundesmarines first Seeflughafen.
In 1957 Holtenau was the place were the 1. Marinefliegergruppe was
established. Besides MFG 3 all naval air units of the Bundeswehr
were commissioned at Holtenau, though only MFG 4 and MFG 5 operated
from the airbase.
The flying units had to share the base with several other military
installations, included various naval schools, a Music Corps and
COMNAVBALTAP - NATO's naval Command for the Baltic.