To the south and east of Appleton Thorn lies the remains of HMS Blackcap.
The Royal Naval Air Station, sometimes also referred to as RNAS (or RAF) Stretton, covered a large area which is now occupied by the Thorn Cross YOI and the local distribution / industrial estates that are accessible off Barleycastle Lane.
Wrens (WRNS) were accommodated around Grappenhall Heys and married quarters were located down Lumb Brook Road at Bridge Lane.
Graves of service personnel who died whilst stationed at Blackcap are well looked after in the graveyard of the village’s St Cross Church.
A service of commemoration, organised by the Greater Manchester branch of the Fleet Air Arm, is held annually at midday on the first Sunday in June.