63 Squadron RAF Regiment has been honing their skills and drills by conducting fire team and section attacks during the day and at night in Scotland, say the RAF.

“These are core skills for RAF Regiment Gunners and form the basis of our further training. As a dual role Squadron, they pride themselves on the very highest of standards, both in the field and in their ceremonial role.”

D Flt Sect Cdr, Cpl Mike McGarr said in a release:

“Following the Christmas leave period, it was a great opportunity to get back into the field and exercise our Force Protection skills and drills during an LFTT package at Barry Buddon. By deploying as an Sqn it gives Commanders at all levels the ability to lead in a realistic training environment.”

The Live Fire Tactical training saw Gunners conduct Section Battle Drills with live ammunition on static targets. Building up from a fireteam of 4 people up to a section of 8, firing during the day and night.

OpsO QCS, Flt Lt Gareth Fisher RAF said:

“Ex COLD EAGLE demonstrated the deployable nature of 63 Sqn RAF Regt and their ability to operate in the Force Protection environment. It’s always pleasing to see how swiftly the Gunners of 63 Sqn RAF Regt transition to their FP role and demonstrate the same degrees of professionalism and excellence in both capabilities. We now look forward to delivering ceremonial excellence on behalf of the Royal Air Force throughout 2020.”

Stn Cdr Northolt, Gp Capt Nick Worrall ADC MA RAF said:

“Exercise COLD EAGLE at Barry Buddon was a great opportunity for me to see the personnel of the dual role Queen’s Colour Squadron (No. 63 Squadron RAF Regiment) in a different light. As a lodger unit at RAF Northolt, it is easy to forget that the RAF Regiment Gunners not only feature front and centre in the ceremonial role but also provide essential skills in airfield defence and Force Protection that enable Air Operations at home and overseas”

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Harold
Harold
6 months ago

Should be incorporated into the army to save money

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
6 months ago
Reply to  Harold

not really. since they perform an incredibly specific job, vital to RAF operations. plus it wouldn’t save any money. you would still need the personnel.

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago

Ah, the elite RAF Reg, did you know they can stand toe to toe with the Paras and Marines after completing the 5 miler of death?

But seriously, the RAF should pick up the bill to protect their assets.

BV

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

To be fair that quote was taken well out of context. But isn’t that what RAF reg are for? What expense is the army facing.

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

The lads I have worked with seem to take the banter well and just go along with it, good blokes on the whole. There are a few, as with most units that buy into the BS and genuinely think they are a cut above an Army line infantry unit, its just not the case, its two completely deferent roles. “But isn’t that what RAF reg are for? What expense is the army facing”. Thats what I mean, for the Army to absorb RAF Reg will make no difference to Inf manning, we already heavy on light inf. It just makes… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

Having sat on the other side of the fence, I could say the same for maroons. But when you need to call the QRF I was always glad to see your guys. Absorbing the Reg into the Army would be a very bad idea! The regiment was formed due to the outcome of the battle for Crete. The Army at the time had other priorities, so only placed light forces defending the airfields such as Maleme. The RAF ground crews put up a spirited defence, but they only had basic range firing the Lee Enfields, Bren and Vickers, not section… Read more »

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

That makes sense, the Army is stretched thin enough to dedicate combat power 100km behind the FLOT. Also, the last thing you need is a 17 year old rifleman getting sucked into a jet engine because his muka dared him to stick his head into the intake on start up.

What happened to the chaps that used to man the Rapiers?

BV

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

Precisely, airfields etc will be a primary target for SF and saboteurs if we get into a major conflict. To combat these you need dedicated ground troops mounting area patrols and for QRF. The days of parachute insertion are still valid as Russia proved in the Crimea. Except they do stupidly low altitude jumps, so their casualty rate musty be pretty high?

When the Rapier Sqns were disbanded, some left due to enforced “defence cuts”, whilst others stayed in, joining a standard infantry squadron.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

^^I do love this. It epitomises forces banter.

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago

RAF Reg, those gate barriers in Scotland don’t go up themselves you know!!! At least they have all got their own lumi vest for the live section battle drills, not just the range staff! Seriously BV is right, most lads are good with the banter, but some realy do believe they are the dogs bollocks, which is fine if your abilities match that, which sadly many don’t. And having worked with them for a couple of years, and (unfortunate, yes I know) have one as a friggin son in law….I know the chuff they say and do very well. Lol.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
6 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

My condolences 😀

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

2 days of section attacks, intense!!!!

I was going to say something about shooting their own body armour in Bastion but that would be childish and nonconstructive.

You have to take into account that they have been cut as much as the rest of our forces, they used to operate Scorpion, Rapier and be much bigger. I think this has taken its toll on training, they are going to struggle, quite rightly, to conduct anything bigger than a company level attack.

BV

Paul T
Paul T
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

Yes the RAF Regiment has suffered cuts as you say – they are due to receive Sky Sabre this year which will be a positive at least.I spent a week at RAF Hullavington in the early 1980’s courtesy of the ATC,much fun was had,plenty of CVRT racing about etc,just a shame I didn’t get past the Medical otherwise I would have been in.

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

I do remember an incident involving body armour. Which apparently consisted of testing Osprey, the original small heart panel plate and some American stuff found lying around against AK 7.62. It was good to know the Osprey could take multiple hits unlike the early stuff. It was also better than the Yank armour!

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Well I have committed now so to hell with it. The body armour thing was from “The battle of Bastion” where naughty chaps got inside the wire and caused an issue. This was not a massive deal, at the time the patrol bases in the green zone were getting hammered daily but Bastion, which was massive at the time was spared anything too heavy. Anyway, long story short, shots were exchanged, cluster f**K ensued, but the baddies were stopped. There was then a vid going round from a security camera showing during the attack a RAF reg chap shooting his… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

I remember the incident at Bastion, though I didn’t hear about the gunner doing that to his own armour – duh, must have been 2 Sqn! Didn’t the tallys take out a couple of USMC Harriers? They tried a similar thing at Kandybar. The RAF Tornados had just moved in taking over the support role from the Harrier. The Tallys attacked the wire from the 3 mile mountain direction (west side). They made it through the outer perimeter into the UAV field, not the main base side (poor recce on their part). The Romanians were manning the guard towers and… Read more »

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Haha, I had no idea Kandahar got smashed, that cheers me up. All those Ruperts in floppy hats, crap tan lines and a never loaded pistol running around like headless chickens. They should have transmitted it live to the PBs to improve moral. The USMC has a combat soldier first policy, they are always tooled up, I met a USMC three star once for a chat, he had 6 mags and 2 grenades in his belt kit, he had an entire platoon for protection, if he is putting rounds down something has gone wrong. Ah was the daddy, I swear… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

Kandahar did get rocketed daily. They quickly learned not to use mortars as they were easy to find. The rockets were generally the 107 to 122 calibre from Russia, China, Pakistan and Iran. Very basic to set up, with a couple of pieces of would joined in a L section, set off using a kitchen timer and aimed in the general direction. So the team would set them up and then leave. Very hard to find on patrols and actually caused very little damage. Although I did speak to engineer who was working on the ramp of a Chinook. He… Read more »

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Been on the receiving end of a 122mm, you can here them coming in for longer then you would imagine, made a right mess of my tent. Which was odd being a 15 year old Chinese kit.

BV

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  BV Buster

Must be terrible with the strict quarantine and limited access to the net, due to the Stella virus?

BV Buster
BV Buster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

I’m a posh Chinese so we have Bollinger virus, hard to quaff through a surgical mask.

BV