“Tradition does not die in the ashes but is carried forward in the flames”
Royal Auxiliary Air Force Foundation
Patron: HRH The Duke of Gloucester
The Foundation Trustees are delighted to welcome Warrant Officer Shobha Earl as a new Trustee. Shobha has a wealth of regular and reservist experience and, until recently, served in the Royal Auxiliary air Force as the Force Warrant Officer reporting directly to the Commandant-General. She is now serving as a volunteer reservist in the RAFR, and her current appointment is Co-ordinator of the Honington Base Support Group
It was with great sadness that we received the news that Air Vice-Marshal BH (Barry) Newton had passed away at the age of 88 in hospital on 25 August after a long illness bravely borne. He had had very close links with the Reserve and Cadet Forces in general and the Royal Auxiliary Air Force in particular in which he served as an Honorary Air Commodore and then as the Force’s Honorary Inspector-General. There will be a private family cremation service and, subject to coronavirus restrictions, a Memorial Service on a date yet to be announced. For subscribers to the Daily Telegraph, his obituary can be viewed here.
During the war, 608 (North Riding) Squadron was part of Coastal Command flying principally Ansons, Hudsons and latterly Mosquitos. A paperback book about the Squadron during these war years has recently been written by Louise Wilkinson. Details can be found at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kipper-Patrol-Louise-Wilkinson/dp/190580945X/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1598896823&sr=1-1-fkmr1
An interesting article by Chris Goss on the role of the overseas pilots and non-commissioned officers from 609 Squadron during the Battle of Britain can be found on page 38 of the April - June 2020 edition of the RAF Association’s Magazine ‘Air Mail’. It can be viewed by clicking here.
On 7 May 2020 , Flight Lieutenant Terry Clark DFM AE passed away at the age of 101. He was a pre-war member of the Auxiliary Air Force serving with 615 (County of Surrey) Squadron and one of the very last of ‘The Few’. His biography, written by a Foundation Trustee, Wing Commander Jeff Metcalfe, can be viewed by clicking here.
A former wartime Spitfire pilot in the Royal Air Force and, after the war, as a member of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, the Commanding Ofiicer of 3618 (County of Sussex) Fighter Control Unit, Wing Commander Donald Perrens passed away on 17 April 2020. His obituary can be viewed in the Daily Telegraph obituary by clicking here.
On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of VE Day on 8th May 2020, Warrant Officer John Webster, a serving member of 602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron for 45 years, narrates a moving video describing the outstanding achievements of of his Squadron during the war and its vital contribution today to control the spread and effects of coronavirus. It can be viewed by clicking here
.It was with great regret that the Foundation learned that Group Captain ‘Robbie’ Robins, a father-figure of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, had passed away on 17thApril 2020. Following service as a radar operator in the Royal Air Force during the war, he joined the Auxiliary Air Force in 1948 becoming the Commanding Officer of No 1 (County of Hertford) Maritime Headquarters Unit and then, in 1973, the Inspector of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. He retired from that appointment in 1983, but retained strong links with the Force until his death. A greatly respected individual, he will be missed by many. His obituary can be viewed on the 2020 News page and by clicking here.
Wing Commander Paul Farnes, a member of 501 (County of Gloucester) Squadron and the last surviving ‘Ace’ of the Battle of Britaiin, died on 28 January 2020. His obituary can be seen in the Daily Telegraph article by clicking here.
The Standard of 2623 Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force Regiment was paraded into Ely Cathedral on 16 January 2020 for a Service of Thanksgiving for the life of Sir Michael Marshal. The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Earl of Wessex, The Duke of Gloucester and the Duke of Kent were represented at the Service. Sir Michael Marshall was a staunch supporter of many local and national charities and was knighted in 2010 for his services to business. A National Service pilot in the Royal Air Force, Sir Michael served as the Honorary Air Commodore of 2623 Squadron from 2003 to 2018.