Battle of Britain Memorial Flight News

Royal Air Force's BBMF Bomber Navigator achieves 7000 flying hours during RIAT flying duties.

Flt Lt Stradling (Stradders) achieved a remarkable 7000 flying hours, equivalent to 292 days of continuous flying, whilst delivering his duties as a Bomber Navigator on the Lancaster for the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) on 16 Jul 23 during the Royal International Air Tattoo.

Having joined the RAF in 1984 and amassed an incredible career across Tornado GR1, GR4 and MQ-9 Reaper, in 2022, Flt Lt Stradling was selected to join the prestigious BBMF as a Bomber Navigator on the Lancaster and Dakota, realising an almost life-long ambition.

Flt Lt Stradling being presented with a bottle of Champagne by Flt Lt Wise upon achieving 7000 flying hours. 

Forming a nexus between two Lincolnshire stations, his achievement comes whilst completing a sortie in his BBMF role for RAF Coningsby, whilst maintaining his resolute support to Op SHADER from RAF Waddington as a Sensor Operator on XIII Sqn in his primary role.  

Having already accumulated over 6000 hours on the Tornado, Stradders has flown over 300 operational sorties, spent two years flying on the Tornado Display Team and has over 11 years of Tornado Instructional experience. He served in the first Gulf War (Op GRANBY), the follow up peace keeping operation (Op RESINATE), deployed in support of operations in Iraq (Op TELIC), Afghanistan (Op HERRICK and Op VERTIAS) and in Op SHADER, as well as several deployments across Europe, Canada and North America.

In 2014 Flt Lt Stradling was awarded the L G Groves Memorial prize for Air Safety for his work integrating CADS into the wider RAF use, in 2019 he received the Masters Commendation by the Honourable Company of Air Pilots and in 2020 was awarded an MBE in the 2020 New Year’s Honours List for his Tornado Service.

Flt Lt Stradling’s accolades are inspiring; maintaining his dual roles, he describes his new BBMF role as an honour. Congratulations to Stradders on his 7000 hours and continued service on BBMF and XIII Sqn.

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