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No. 25 Squadron returning to fly the Hawk T2.

A second Hawk T2 squadron is to form at RAF Valley to provide Advanced Fast Jet Training (AFJT) of Royal Air Force and Royal Navy pilots.

Later this year RAF Hawk T2 training aircraft will appear in No. 25(F) Squadron markings.
Credit: D. Eklund

Existing IV(AC) Squadron, which has operated from the Anglesey station since 2010, is to split into two with a reformed No.25 (F) Squadron taking on responsibility for the first phase of AFJT.

The move has been prompted by the increased demand for fast jet pilots on the front line to fly Typhoon and Lightning. The number of Typhoon squadrons was boosted on Tuesday 24th July 2018 with the reformation of 12 Squadron at RAF Coningsby, which followed the announcement that IX(B) Squadron will stand up on Typhoon at RAF Lossiemouth next year. Meanwhile at RAF Marham 617 Squadron continues to work up on the Lightning.

“I am delighted that No. 25 Squadron is returning to fly the Hawk T2. These are exciting times for the Military Flying Training System and the addition of this new squadron will see the continued delivery of high quality, efficient and effective flying training to meet the requirements of the front line.”

Air Vice-Marshal Warren James
Air Officer Commanding No. 22 Group

A Gloster Javelin FAW.9R photographed on a flight from RAF Waterbeach, Cambs in October 1960 carrying four de Havilland Firestreak air-air missiles. The ‘Flying Flat Iron’ was operated by No. 25 Squadorn from December 1958 to November 1962. 
Credit: AHB

“It is a great honour to be the first Officer Commanding of the re-formed No.25 (Fighter) Squadron here at RAF Valley. The Squadron first formed at RAF Montrose in Scotland on 25 September 1915 and served with distinction throughout WW1 and WW2.  No.25(F) Squadron then conducted Air Defence operations with a series of early jet aircraft types, followed by the Bloodhound Surface to Air Missile and, latterly, the Tornado F3, before being disbanded on 4 Apr 2008."

Wing Commander Tim Simmons
Officer Commanding No.25 (Fighter) Squadron

The Gloster Grebe Mk.II was the first post-First World War fighter to enter service with the RAF in 1923. It served with six squadrons including No. 25 Squadron at RAF Hawkinge. Credit: AHB

“Throughout its history, No.25(F) Squadron has been at the forefront of contemporary air operations and has exemplified the fighting spirit and ethos that remains an integral part RAF operations today. The new role for 25(F) Squadron is to train and inspire the next generation of fighter pilots who will continue to defend the UK’s skies and interests; maintaining that same fighting spirit and ethos of our forebears is crucial and I am very privileged to be part of that legacy.”

Wing Commander Tim Simmons
Officer Commanding No.25 (Fighter) Squadron

The squadron is expected to reform by the end of the year.

Flames from the engine of de Havilland Vampire NF.10, WP252, of No. 25 Squadron are caught on start-up as the aircraft is prepared for night sortie from West Malling, Kent, on 25 February 1952. No. 25 Squadron was the first to receive this night-fighter version of the Vampire which it operated from July 1951 to April 1954. Credit: AHB