Wednesday, 30 August 2017

228 OCU FGR.2 Phantom 1990 at Leuchars Elder Forest slides

A recent Ebay win -  a lot of 40 unmounted slides of aircraft etc seen at RAF Leuchars, Scotland, during a media facility for the air defence exercise ELDER FOREST, on 24 April 1990 – an interesting moment, right at the end of the Cold War and before the modern era of “expeditionary warfare” that began with the first Gulf War.

 The images show Phantoms of No. 228 OCU ; Tornado F3s of No. 43 Squadron ; Hawks ; Wessex SAR helicopters ; a VC10 tanker ; and Bulldogs, probably of Aberdeen, Dundee and St Andrews University Air Squadron, as well as general views of the airfield, hangers etc. In this first post a few images of one of the FGR. 2 Phantoms XV 490 "CG"

A note from the seller;  " ..The Phantoms are worth noting as some of the last in use of the type, with 228 OCU being disbanded in 1991. From my notes on the day, the RAF briefers explained that it would have become 64 Fighter Squadron in war. They also noted that, as the expected warning time of war had become longer at this time, with the end of the Cold War, it had become more feasible to contemplate using such aircraft, and others from Nos. 43 and 111 Squadron which had gone into reserve storage, with crews taken from flying personnel in admin/training ground slots. They also formed part of the wartime attrition reserve at this time. No. 43 Squadron was said to be aiming for full operational capability by mid 1990, and of course were deployed during the crisis with Iraq that broke out in summer 1990.

 Note that the photos were taken with a half-frame camera, so each image is half the size of a normal slide, at around 25mm x 20mm. However, as can be seen, most came out pretty well, as it was a very nice day..."

I made the mistake of scanning these in at too high a resolution so a bit grainy!

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