The Princess Royal, who is Honorary Air Commodore to RAF Brize Norton, reviewed members of the Squadron on parade in front of invited guests, to mark their proud history.
The parade marched to the music of The Central Band of the Royal Air Force with a background of two static C-130 Hercules aircraft. The event, attended by past and present members of the Squadron (Sqn) were able to witness the Hercules carry out one of its last spectacular flypasts.
The Hercules will retire from RAF service on 30 June, and concurrently No.47 Squadron will be stood down and its Standard laid up for a period at College Hall Officers’ Mess, RAF College Cranwell, until reformed.
Number 47 Sqn, Royal Flying Corps, was formed in Beverley, Yorkshire on 1 March 1916. The Squadron was initially designated for home defence, but was not issued with any aircraft until 13 April, when four Royal Aircraft Factory BE2Cs were transferred from 15 Reserve Squadron. During its 107-year history, the Squadron has operated across the globe and has been equipped with a number of different aircraft; in 1968 it became a C-130 Hercules Squadron, based at RAF Fairford, then moving shortly thereafter to RAF Lyneham.
In 2011 No. 47 Sqn moved from RAF Lyneham to RAF Brize Norton, where it has continued to provide highly trained crews and support staff to support the MOD and by extension the United Kingdom’s requirements in the global theatre. The Squadron has received several battle honours with the right to emblazon and a wealth of individual operational awards over the years.