No. 1312 Flight RAF

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No. 1312 Flight RAF
RAF Stanley - 1312 Flt C-130 taking off into the sunset.jpg
A 1312 Flight C-130 taking-off at RAF Stanley
Active 19 Apr 1944 – 21 Jul 1944
14 Sep 1954 – 1 Apr 1957
20 Aug 1983 – present[1]
Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Branch Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg Royal Air Force
Role Transport
(1944; 1954–1957)
Aerial refueling and transport
(1983–present)
Motto Uphold the right
Insignia
Squadron Badge heraldry No known badge
Squadron Codes No known identification code for the flight is known to have been carried

No. 1312 Flight is an independent flight of the Royal Air Force, supporting at present the defence of the Falkland Islands.

While the UK officially does not foresee any threat to the Falkland Islands, it maintains significant military forces as a deterrent against any aggressor. These forces also protect South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. The Royal Air Force contribution to this deterrent is based at RAF Mount Pleasant, the primary component of which is No. 1435 Flight, with its four Eurofighter Typhoons providing air defence. The squadron goes by the motto of "Uphold the right" while the motto of the Falkland Islands is "Desire the right".

1312 Flight operates in support of this force providing aerial refuelling, air transport, search and rescue and maritime patrol. The latter is an important mission to the Falkland Islands government as the Hercules verifies that all fishing vessels are licensed; at £1,000 per licence per season this is an important source of income.

History[edit]

1312 (Transport) Flight was first formed on 19 April 1944 at RAF Llandow. It operated 6 Avro Ansons to collect and deliver aircrew involved in the ferrying replacement aircraft. After June 1944 it was involved in transporting wounded serviceman back to England from France until it was disbanded on 21 July 1944.[2][3]

The flight was re-formed on 14 September 1954, at RAF Abingdon, as 1312 (Transport Support) Flight operating the Handley Page Hastings and later the Vickers Valetta, disbanding on 1 April 1957.[1][3]

1312 (In-Flight Refuelling) Flight re-formed again on the 20 August 1983 at RAF Stanley before moving to the newly opened RAF Mount Pleasant in 1986.[4] The original task was to operate the Lockheed Hercules on air-to-air refueling missions, but these were later replaced by VC10s (borrowed from 101 Squadron) and Hercules C.1s from the Lyneham Wing.[3] On 31 August 2013 the VC10 was replaced by a TriStar K1 from 216 Squadron.

Aircraft operated[edit]

Aircraft operated by no. 1312 Flight RAF, data from[1][3]
From To Aircraft Version Example
19 April 1944 21 July 1944 Avro Anson MkI
MkX
NK692
NK696
14 September 1954 1 April 1957 Handley Page Hastings C1
C2
TG615 'L'
WD485
February 1955 1 April 1957 Vickers Valetta C1 WD158; VL274
20 August 1983 31 March 1996 Lockheed Hercules C1K XV201
31 March 1996 31 August 2013 Vickers VC10
Lockheed Hercules
K4
C1
ZD242 'P'
..
31 August 2013 February 2014 TriStar
Lockheed Hercules
K1
C1[5]
..
..
February 2014 Present Voyager
Lockheed Hercules
KC2[6]
C1
..
..

Flight bases[edit]

Bases and airfields used by no. 1312 Flight RAF, data from[1][3]
From To Base
19 April 1944 21 July 1944 RAF Llandow, Glamorgan, Wales
14 September 1954 1 April 1957 RAF Abingdon, Oxfordshire
20 August 1983 1986 RAF Stanley, Falkland Islands
1986 present RAF Mount Pleasant, Falkland Islands

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes
Bibliography
  • Lake, Alan. Flying Units of the RAF. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1999. ISBN 1-84037-086-6.
  • Sturtivant, Ray, ISO and John Hamlin. RAF Flying Training And Support Units since 1912. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd., 2007. ISBN 0-85130-365-X.