Published: 28/03/2014 16:21 - Updated: 28/03/2014 16:33

RAF squadrons take final salute

Tornado aircraft bearing the mottos of 617 and 12 (B) Squadron.
Tornado aircraft bearing the mottos of 617 and 12 (B) Squadron.

THE RAF’S famous Dambusters and 12 (Bomber) Squadron today (Friday) took their final salute.

The Duke of York, Honorary Air Commodore of RAF Lossiemouth, was at the Moray base for the joint disbandment parade, marking the end of an era in the history of the station and the air force.

"Today is perhaps an emotional and sad day when one considers the length of service and the sacrifice that has been made by both squadrons," Prince Andrew said. However, he added that those in the armed forces cope with change on a daily basis, and with it comes renewal.

As the Central Band of the Royal Air Force played ’Auld Lang Syne’, the squadrons’ standards were marched off. 617 Squadron, the Dambusters, will reform as the first operational Lightning II squadron at RAF Marham, Norfolk, in 2018.

The squadrons will be replaced at Lossiemouth by three Typhoon units, the first of which – 6 Squadron – is scheduled to touch down at the Moray base in June.

Following the parade, Prince Andrew travelled to Hopeman to officially open the village’s new sports pavilion. A crowd gathered to welcome the Royal visitor to the Moray village, which was praised for demonstrating incredible community spirit in bringing the project to fruition.

For a picture special and full reports read next week’s print edition of ‘The Scot’.

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