Following the retirement of the Sea Harrier, the Fleet Air Arm commenced operations with the Harrier GR7 and GR9 aircraft, within the framework of Joint Force Harrier (JFH) based at RAF Cottesmore in Rutland. JFH is a robust organisation that provides the necessary support and expertise for the Harrier, and acts as a parent for the UK’s three front line Harrier Squadrons: Naval Strike Wing, No1 (F) Sqn RAF and NoIV (AC) Sqn RAF.
The Royal Navy acquired thirteen Hawk T.Mk 1/1As from the RAF, for use as aerial targets for the training of ships gunners and radar operators. They belong to the Fleet Requirements and Direction Unit (FRADU), based at RNAS Culdrose in Cornwall.
After retirement from the Swiss Air Force, a pair of Hunter F.58's (J-4058 and J-4066) were acquired by OFMC (Old Flying Machine Company) and then Hawker Hunter Aviation, based out of RAF Scampton. These airframes have now lost their civilian identities to become military aircraft once more, operated under COMA (Civil Owned Military Aircraft) regulations.
The Falcon 20 is a ten-passenger twin-engine bussiness jet with cruising speeds of up to Mach 0.8. Dassault packed this aircraft with the technical solutions it had tried and tested in military applications. The Falcon 20 is used by Cobham for the Electronic Warfare and Missile training.
The Jetstream is used to train the all important Observers of the Fleet Air Arm who eventually become the tacticians on the Sea King Mk7 ASaC (Airborne Surveillance and Control), Merlin (anti-submarine) and Lynx (anti-surface) helicopters. To facilitate this training, the Jetstream is fitted with a nose mounted radar and two navigation consoles for the student and instructor.
The T67 Firefly's belong to 703 NAS and is part of the Defence Elementary Flying School at RAF Barkston Heath. DEFTS consists of 2 squadrons; 703 NAS which trains 60 Royal Navy students per year and 674 Sqn AAC which trains 70 Army Students per year.
The Tutor is a cost-effective, modern elementary training aircraft. The combination of easy handling characteristics and good performance make it very suitable for its training role. The Grob 115E, known by the RN as the Tutor, is used for Elementary Flying Training with 727 Naval Air Squadron based at RNAS Yeovilton.
The Westland WG.13 Lynx was designed in the mid-1960s as a replacement for the Westland Scout and Wasp in service with the British Army and Navy. As part of the Anglo-French helicopter agreement, the French company Aerospatiale was also given a work share in the manufacturing programme. Designed to undertake battlefield support, search and rescue and anti-submarine roles, the prototype first flew on 21st March 1971.
The helicopter was designed and developed as a joint venture between Westland Aircraft based at Yeovil in Somerset UK and Agusta at Vergiate in Italy. As a result of this joint venture, the two companies were merged to form Agusta Westland International Limited in January 2004.
SA365 Dauphin II
The Royal Navy aquired two SA365 Dauphin II in 1999 when they were delivered to the Flag Officer Sea Training (FOST) unit which has been a world centre of excellence in the Royal Navy for Naval basic and advanced operational training since 1958.
The Westland WS-61 Sea King helicopter is a British licence-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter which first flew during 1969. The first two pattern aircraft were in fact stock SH-3D airframes wearing the serials XV370 and XV371 and were used primarily for trials purposes. All further airframes were manufactured by Westland helicopters at their plant at Yeovil, Somerset.
The Squirrel HT1 is used by the Defence Helicopter Flying School (DHFS) at RAF Shawbury, in Shropshire, for Single Engine Basic Rotary Wing (SEBRW) training with Army Air Corps 660 Squadron and Single Engine Advanced Rotary Wing (SEARW) training with 705 Naval Air Squadron. The DHFS selected the Squirrel helicopter, manufactured by Eurocopter, as a replacement for the Gazelle when the School became operational in 1997.