Does the RAF regiment have a future?

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
...Equipped with Scorpion and Spartan armoured vehicles, they reinforced Muharraq and crossed into Iraq with 1(BR) Armoured Division as the reconnaissance screen for the Division, ending the war astride the Kuwait-Basra highway.
Really?

That's going to be a bit of a surprise to the Divisional reconnaissance unit, 16/5 Queen's Royal Lancers, who, until now, had been under the impression that they provided that screen, what with it being their job and all.
 

Boxy

GCM
Really?

That's going to be a bit of a surprise to the Divisional reconnaissance unit, 16/5 Queen's Royal Lancers, who, until now, had been under the impression that they provided that screen, what with it being their job and all.
I was just thinking that myself
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
This ( 1 Squadron RAF Regiment 1st Gulf War Anniversary | Royal Air Force ) tells a bit more of the story and makes it clearer what the squadron actually did - nothing shameful or embarrassing about it, at all, but certainly not what @Kefi alleges:

"1 Squadron RAF Regiment 1st Gulf War Anniversary
To commemorate 30 years since Op GRANBY Number 1 Squadron RAF Regiment remembers their time during the conflict.
The Squadron, then based at RAF Laarburch in Germany, deployed on the operation from January to March 1991. Below is a more detailed account of their involvement

  • 16 Jan 91 – members of A and B Flight plus an element of the Squadron Headquarters deploy to Muharreq airfield in Bahrain.
  • Jan 91 - C Flt deployed to Al Jubail in Saudi Arabia along with elements of the RAF Support Helicopter Force before deploying to King Khalid Military City (KKMC). Later joined by A and B Flight.
  • Early February 1991 saw B Flight taking over operations at KKMC protecting the Puma and Sea King main operating bases whilst the rest of the Squadron moved North with the CVR(T) that had arrived from RAF Laarbruch along with the forward elements of the Support Helicopter force to await the start of the ground war.
  • On the 26 February, elements of the Squadron moved across the border through ‘the breech’ into Iraq. Flt Lt Brunt’s (callsign 41C) Combat Fighting Group was the first across, followed by the Squadron Commander’s (Sqn Ldr Hughes) Rover Group.
  • By 28 February, the Allied offensive came to a halt and the Squadron combat fighting group prepared to withdraw. Fortunately, the only Iraqis encountered at this stage were more interested in surrendering than fighting.
  • 1 March, A and C combat fighting group escorted the Support Helicopter Force into Kuwait to a position just north of Kuwait City, with A Flt taking the lead. At this point, B combat fight group remained in Saudi Arabia, assisting in the collection and handling of Iraqi prisoners of war.
  • On the 7 March, the Sqn regrouped at Al Jubayl prior to recovery back to Muharraq on the 14 March. The Squadron main party returned to RAF Laarbruch on the 17 March 1991.
Number 1 Squadron was subsequently awarded the battle honour ‘Gulf 1991’ and is the only RAF Regiment Squadron entitled to emblazon it on the Squadron Standard."
 

Slime

LE
Re the Akrotiri attack, it was on a Sunday, with most people asleep or at the beach. I was ambling home from the papershop and heard gunfire. I'm thinking " that's odd, the ranges are closed today". Next minute the mortars started.
In civvies, unarmed, on a Sunday, with no prior threat warning, keeping your head down is the only option available.

For you yes.
But using that logic for everyone, the result is to just sit and wait while the airfield is blacked and any aircraft destroyed……….and in that scenario there is no point having any integral defence force.

As per my earlier comment.
If the airfield had been attacked with something like 81mm mortars, and fired from professionally trained troops the effect, accuracy and damage could have been a lot worse. From memory Akrotiri was attacked with smaller calibre mortars.

Same thing applied to PIRA, Hamas or the PLO that I mentioned.
Think of the PIRA mortar attack on Downing Street. A well trained crew with better mortars would have done far more damage.

In more recent times we saw the Taliban attack that led to a fair amount of aircraft damage*
A peer SF attack could be far better organised and far more destructive, hence why the RAF really do need their own defence force, and to kit that force out with weapons for the job.

*The attack where only ‘No4 mk1’ (think that was the avatar) saw it coming :)
 
For you yes.
But using that logic for everyone, the result is to just sit and wait while the airfield is blacked and any aircraft destroyed……….and in that scenario there is no point having any integral defence force.

As per my earlier comment.
If the airfield had been attacked with something like 81mm mortars, and fired from professionally trained troops the effect, accuracy and damage could have been a lot worse. From memory Akrotiri was attacked with smaller calibre mortars.

Same thing applied to PIRA, Hamas or the PLO that I mentioned.
Think of the PIRA mortar attack on Downing Street. A well trained crew with better mortars would have done far more damage.

In more recent times we saw the Taliban attack that led to a fair amount of aircraft damage*
A peer SF attack could be far better organised and far more destructive, hence why the RAF really do need their own defence force, and to kit that force out with weapons for the job.

*The attack where only ‘No4 mk1’ (think that was the avatar) saw it coming :)
WIll you **** off with comman sense, the biggest threat to the regt is cost, Honnington is not cheap to run,whilst yes it still keeps a airfield (hardened at that),RAF big wigs tend to be aircrew who like fast shiney toys,yje main problem for the RAF is the same as the MOD has HMG wants a massive world wide go getting forces but wants not to pay for it.
Only a few months ago the RAF was on about disperal airfields which would need FP, and loads of other trades in support, years of cutting posts or out soucring means there is no one left to do FP bare the regt.
Maybe its time to call the rocks infantry send them to Catterick then do rhe airfield stuff after
 

Slime

LE
WIll you **** off with comman sense, the biggest threat to the regt is cost, Honnington is not cheap to run,whilst yes it still keeps a airfield (hardened at that),RAF big wigs tend to be aircrew who like fast shiney toys,yje main problem for the RAF is the same as the MOD has HMG wants a massive world wide go getting forces but wants not to pay for it.
Only a few months ago the RAF was on about disperal airfields which would need FP, and loads of other trades in support, years of cutting posts or out soucring means there is no one left to do FP bare the regt.
Maybe its time to call the rocks infantry send them to Catterick then do rhe airfield stuff after

One of my friends is a Staish at a fighter station, the rocks don’t even feature in his mindset of what’s important.
Sad really, as an airfield defence force is one of those things that needs to be in place and properly equipped right not, and not something to think about once an attack starts.

You might well be making a good point about using army sites for training, but there are already a few army sites that are former RAF stations that have enough spare room to house/train rocks too.

Even II Sqn could just do P company with the army.
That would cut the need for RAF pre para, would end the are they/aren’t they real para debate………..and would really annoy the paras :)
 

Slime

LE
@oscar1whisky

I forgot to add earlier.
Glad to hear you were unscathed during the attack :)
 
Just finished a long and frankly, rather depressing conversation with Son No1Mk1 who is an Officer in the RAF Rgt. The successors to Air Marshall "Mike" are pretty much pretty much uninspiring. Two Men and one woman.
One of the male hopefuls made a long and detailed speech regarding the future of the RAF as he saw it - more expensive tech kit, more cyber Int, huge reduction in numbers, no role for the RAF Rgt. Second male hopeful pretty much the same views. Female candidate former flyer, headed up RAF equivalent of Staff College, superfast promotion and like the male candidates wants to ditch the Rgt.. As Woke as the most Woke thing in the world, has a female partner and is of mixed race heritage.

I wonder who the Next Air Chief Marshall will be?

There are rumours circulating the the RAF Rgt may possibly be absorbed into the orbat of the proposed Ranger Division but that will never happen because it's too sensible.

Oh, and too add to his deep joy the most recent promotion board for his next step up had around 300 candidates, there was one promotion. It has been made known that there will be no promotions for the next two to three years at least

Are you talking replacement of Wigston? If so, and I'm happy to acknowledge that I've been out of the loop some time, but I don't recognise any of the characters you describe. Besides which, he assumed CAS from Hillier in mid-19 if memory serves me correctly, and so has at least another year to run, possibly longer as he is not old for a Service Chief (he was 50 or 51 when he became CAS).

The only female former flyer whom, as you so succinctly put it is 'of mixed race heritage' (WTF???) is Air Cdre (soon to be AVM) Suraya Marshall, whose partner is AVM (likely soon to be a 3*) Alan Marshall.

Your son has (IMHO) been feeding you inaccuracies and inconsistencies, methinks.
 

Slime

LE
The funny was for that line alone!!!!

He certainly was funny.
If only the whole of NATO senior command had consulted him first :)

He came back a while ago, but I’ve forgotten the new avatar name he used.
 
Are you talking replacement of Wigston? If so, and I'm happy to acknowledge that I've been out of the loop some time, but I don't recognise any of the characters you describe. Besides which, he assumed CAS from Hillier in mid-19 if memory serves me correctly, and so has at least another year to run, possibly longer as he is not old for a Service Chief (he was 50 or 51 when he became CAS).

The only female former flyer whom, as you so succinctly put it is 'of mixed race heritage' (WTF???) is Air Cdre (soon to be AVM) Suraya Marshall, whose partner is AVM (likely soon to be a 3*) Alan Marshall.

Your son has (IMHO) been feeding you inaccuracies and inconsistencies, methinks.
How have the RAF ever had such a 'golden couple'? Note wearing hair in a pigtail seems to be a good career move for women since the style introduced by Wigston!

Can we make book on what else is for the chop in the RAF?
 
How have the RAF ever had such a 'golden couple'? Note wearing hair in a pigtail seems to be a good career move for women since the style introduced by Wigston!

Can we make book on what else is for the chop in the RAF?

I think the 'hair in a pigtail' issue was one of these ones that was going to make the sky fall in, if you consulted the Alzheimer's Society (eg most Stations' Sgts Messes) 2 or 3 years ago. Personally I couldn't give a toss.

Ref 'golden couples', when I was at Strike Command many years ago, this bloke AVM Nigel Maddox was married to a 1 or 2* loggie.
 
I think the 'hair in a pigtail' issue was one of these ones that was going to make the sky fall in, if you consulted the Alzheimer's Society (eg most Stations' Sgts Messes) 2 or 3 years ago. Personally I couldn't give a toss.

Ref 'golden couples', when I was at Strike Command many years ago, this bloke AVM Nigel Maddox was married to a 1 or 2* loggie.
Can't say I was ever acquainted with the Maddox family, interesting, the Marshall's seem to be doing better. Mid 1960's a couple SAC/SACW married went on tour to Singapore together and came back still serving, they too were considered 'Golden'.

Any views on future cuts?
 
Better conditions and tacos, faster promotion, rarely far from home, cookhouse 24/7, better family life, etc etc
Have you been out a while?
 
oscar1whisky said:
Better conditions and tacos, faster promotion, rarely far from home, cookhouse 24/7, better family life, etc etc
TBF to the rocks the 80s must have been a pain,if rapier falklands once a year IIRC,if field NI on 6 monthers or stagging on at Greenham
 
Members of 4001 Flt RAF Regiment became NBC team attached to 4th Armoured Division during Desert Shield / Desert Storm and Desert Sabre

1 Squadron RAF Regiment were flown into Al Qaysumah to reinforce the base from RAF Germany. Equipped with Scorpion and Spartan armoured vehicles, they reinforced Muharraq and crossed into Iraq with 1(BR) Armoured Division as the reconnaissance screen for the Division, ending the war astride the Kuwait-Basra highway.
You're dead in the water.

the most recent promotion board for his next step up had around 300 candidates, there was one promotion. It has been made known that there will be no promotions for the next two to three years at least
 

Slime

LE
oscar1whisky said:
Better conditions and tacos, faster promotion, rarely far from home, cookhouse 24/7, better family life, etc etc
TBF to the rocks the 80s must have been a pain,if rapier falklands once a year IIRC,if field NI on 6 monthers or stagging on at Greenham

Definitely a better cookhouse if they had TACOS in the ‘80s ;)

But to be serious, yes, better food, and the ‘advantage’ of kind of being left to do their own thing on station due to being different.
 

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