Dambusters squadron name lives on
DEFENCE Secretary Gavin Williamson said it was “very fitting” that Britain’s cuttingedge F-35 Lightning stealth fighter jets will carry the name of the squadron that carried out the daring Dambusters raid.
Mr Williamson announced the imminent arrival of the supersonic warplanes on a visit to RAF Coningsby on the 75th anniversary of the Dambusters mission.
The Lancasters flown by 617 squadron in the Second World War used Barnes Wallis’s bouncing bombs to disable Hitler’s industrial heartland during their mission on May 16/17 1943.
The squadron was recently stood back up for the F-35 jets, which will be based at RAF Marham in Norfolk.
Mr Williamson announced the arrival of the F-35s at the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight yesterday.
He said: “If you think about what the Dambusters were doing 75 years ago, they were using the very cutting-edge technology in order to be able do the job that they had been asked to do.
“If you think about the modern 617 squadron, we’re going to be giving them ... the most advanced aircraft in the whole world, and it’s fitting that those that have such an amazing jet have, and carry, that squadron name.”
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson inspects a Spitfire during a visit to RAF Coningsby yesterday