RAF Honington has paraded its Freedom of West Suffolk through the town of Bury St. Edmunds before joining Royal Navy and Army cohorts, Cadets, Emergency Services, and many other organisations for a Sunset Ceremony in celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the award by the former Borough of Bury St Edmunds (now West Suffolk) to RAF Honington in 1972, this year also sees RAF Honington celebrate 85 years as a Royal Air Force Station.
"It is a huge privilege for RAF Honington in this our 85th year to celebrate 50 years since we were awarded the Freedom of West Suffolk. Historically, the freedom of a town is a symbol of the trust invested in the military by the civil community and we continue to be overwhelmed by the level of support we receive from our local communities with Bury St. Edmunds being close to our hearts. Many of our station personnel reside here and are proud to call it home. The opportunity to parade this evening and conduct a Sunset Ceremony with our fellow Suffolk Armed Forces in this the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year is a momentous occasion of which we are all extremely proud."
Group Captain Holland
Station Commander RAF Honington
Station personnel from Medics to Armourers including Army personnel from 64 Headquarters Squadron, 28 Engineer Regiment (C-CBRN) also based at RAF Honington paraded for hundreds of members of the Town and local community. Air Vice-Marshal The Honourable David Murray CVO OBE DL represented Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk with Councillor Mike Chester, Chairman of West Suffolk Council joining the Station Commander, Group Captain Holland on the Dais.
RAF Honington joined HMS Vengeance, 3 Army Air Corps, Cadets, Youth and Emergency Services on Angel Hill for the Sunset Ceremony and treated the crowd to a fine display of drill with music provided by the RAF Honington Voluntary Band before the Flag was lowered and the National Anthem played. The local Glenmoriston Pipe Band also entertained the crowd in between parades.
"I am deeply grateful to the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force plus the Cadets, Emergency Services and Civilian organisations for the gift to us all in Bury St Edmunds this evening, of this very moving Sunset Ceremony. A most wonderful tribute to mark and celebrate Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. My very best wishes to you all."
Suffolk Lady Clare
HM Lord Lieutenant