Such a fine way to celebrate centenary
Forces parade marks 100 years of RAF Northolt
THOUSANDS lined the streets of Uxbridge to celebrate 100 years of RAF Northolt.
The Freedom of Hillingdon parade marched through Uxbridge High Street on Monday (June 22) to mark the military airfield’s centenary.
The Central Band of the Royal Air Force and a full Guard of Honour, provided by the Queen’s Colour Squadron, took part in the “spectacular and colourful event”.
A total of 170 armed service personnel were cheered on by crowds of residents, Armed Forces veterans, and politicians.
Past and present Uxbridge and South Ruislip MPs, John Randall and Boris Johnson, Leader of Hillingdon Council, Ray Puddifoot, and Paralympic equestrian Natasha Baker could be seen admiring the show.
Cllr Ray Puddifoot said: “It was fantastic to see so many people at the Freedom of Hillingdon Parade. The community really came together to celebrate the role RAF Northolt has played during the last 100 years, showing how much we respect and value our military connections.
“Here in Hillingdon we are extremely proud to support the Armed Forces and ensure their
The Uxbridge Gazette Series commitment is recognised. Many of the borough’s residents are former or serving personnel, volunteer reservists and war veterans.”
The Queen’s Colour for the Royal Air Force and the standards for 32 The Royal Squadron and 63 Squadron RAF Regiment were also proudly on parade. The Army Detachment was provided by 621 Explosive Ordinance Disposal and the British Forces Post Office.
Group Captain Andy Bacon, RAF Northolt’s Station Commander, is “overwhelmed and grateful” for the support received by the local community, Hillingdon Council, residents’ associations, schools and businesses.
He said: “RAF Northolt has been supporting military operations for 100 years now and our strong relationship with the local community is vital in helping us do that.
“The Freedom of Hillingdon Parade was a fine way to celebrate this relationship and our centenary and we’re proud to have been invited to do so.”
Union flags proudly waved by onlookers of all ages, were provided by an Uxbridge shopping centre.
Craig Higgins, intu Uxbridge marketing manager, said: “Intu Uxbridge were thrilled to support the parade in the town marking the centenary of RAF Northolt, the array of Union flags was a heartwarming sight.”
The parade took place from 10.40am until 11.40am. Military personnel marched from Harefield Road, through Uxbridge High Street to the Civic forecourt.
The celebration was organised by Hillingdon Council and RAF Northolt to pay tribute to the borough’s long association with the unit, which started operating on March 3, 1915.
n ATTENTION: Above and below left, Mayor of Hillingdon, Councillor George Cooper inspects the troops, bottom left, Cllr Ray Puddifoot, and military personnel, local dignitaries and MPs watch the parade