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SOLSTA Facility Opening

On 27th April RAF Coningsby’s Station Commander, Group Captain Matt Peterson, formally opened the Lynsey Miller SOLSTA Facility supported by Astra.

RAF aircrew are trained in SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Extraction) techniques. The brand new SOLSTA (SERE Outdoor Land Survival Training Area) has been established to allow practice of these skills locally so avoiding the need to go elsewhere and thus improve access to the training.

The facility imagines a scenario where a student has survived an aircraft crash behind enemy lines, and gives them the necessary skills, for example creating a shelter, gathering and cooking food, in order to live off the land prior to a rescue.

Group Captain Matt Peterson, Station Commander said, “I am enormously impressed with this project, it would be easy to think that the only way to experience this type of training one would need to be fully submerged in the wilderness; however, whilst this still has its place, the ingenious SERE team at RAF Coningsby have created an invaluable additional training environment at the very heart of Typhoon training. The SOLSTA also offers an exceptional opportunity to engage with our local community and youth organisations to generate greater awareness of what the RAF does and of essential survival skills.”

Sergeant Lynsey Miller served at RAF Coningsby until 2016 when she sadly passed away after a brave and courageous battle against breast cancer. This facility has been named after Lynsey in honour of her time and hard work at RAF Coningsby.

“We decided to name the new training area after Lynsey, a dedicated and well-remembered colleague” He continued, “The SOLSTA facility, is the introduction of an exciting new training experience for RAF Coningsby. Local RAF Stations can also use the facility, and if successful it has potential to be rolled out to other RAF Units.”

                                                                             -Sgt Matt Elwood, Survival Equipment Flight

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