1966

The squadron operated as a medium bomber squadron, with QRA capability, throughout 1966.
It also provided detachment(s) to Tengah, in support of Operation Matterhorn (January to August 1966)

Stationed at:

  • RAF Cottesmore (Rutland)
  • Rotational Tengah Detachments (Operation Matterhorn) (January to August 1966)

Role

  • Medium bomber squadron, equipped for low level strategic bombing

Command:

  • Cottesmore Wing, V Force, No. 1 Group, Bomber Command
  • Far East Air Force (Tengah Detachments)

Squadron Command

  • Commanding Officer:
    • Wing Commander DA Arnott DFC

Strength


World Events impacting the squadron

Indonesian Confrontation (Operation Matterhorn)

In 1966, the squadron sent detachments to Tengah, Singapore to provide support during the Indonesian Confrontation (which took place between 1963 and 1966).

The record book shows “Operation Matterhorn requires a number of Vulcan aircraft and crews to be detached to the Far East. No 35 Squadron carries one-third of this commitment and crews are detached to the theatre for periods of approximately three and a half months”

On Sunday 14th August, orders were received covering the withdrawal of the medium bombers to the United Kingdom. This followed the signing of the Bangkok Agreement by Malaysia and Indonesia, ending the confrontation between these two countries.


Activities

Air Crew

  • War Target Study
  • Provision of QRA Capability (1 aircraft at all times)
  • Ground Training (on station and off station)
    • Lectures / Courses in subjects such as Intelligence, Weapons and Aircraft Systems
    • Emergency, Escape, Dinghy and Survival Drills
    • “Trade” related Refresher Courses
  • Flying Training
    • As per Basic Training Requirement (BTR) Programme
  • Ongoing Assessments, Checks and Classifications
  • Station readiness and dispersal, Cross Country, Bombing, Air Defence and Fighter Affiliation Exercises
    • Kinsman (Regular)
    • Billion (Regular)
    • Mick (January and December 1966)
    • Co-Op (April and October 1966)
    • Micky Finn (May 1966)
    • Statex (November 1966)
  • Operation Matterhorn (Tengah Detachments) including exercises:
    • Long Horn (February 1966)
    • Anvil (February 1966)
    • Short Spica (March 1966)
    • Gannex (April and May 1966)
    • Anvil 2 (May 1966)
    • Angle Iron (June 1966)
    • Long Hop (June 1966)
    • High Castor (August 1966)
  • Rangers
    • Western
    • Pacific
    • Akrotiri
    • Goose
    • Luqa
    • El Adem
  • Displays / Flypasts
    • “Round the World Trip” for the Auckland Air Display (January / February 1966)
    • Firepower Demonstration at China Rock Bombing Range (July 1966)
  • Bombing Competitions
    • “Big Flight” – 1966 Strategic Air Command Bombing Competition (September / October 1966)

Ground Personnel

  • Administrative Duties

Events

Aircraft from No 12 and No 35 Squadron on display at the opening of Auckland Airport (January 1966). It is worth noting that whilst on this “Round the World Trip”, the aircraft covered the 2,100 nautical mile leg between Hawaii and California in a record time of 3hrs and 40 minutes


35 Squadron aircraft, which had returned from Darwin to Tengah on 17th August, prepare to return to the UK on 23rd. .

Flt. Lt JM Morgan and crew, Flt. Lt B Dorrington and crew and Flt. Lt PG Franklin and crew formed up after take off and did a flypast over Tengah for the benefit of the news cameramen covering the withdrawal.


Tengah2 [Marham Aviation Heritage Centre FB]

A low pass by Flt Lt J M Morgan at Tengah to mark the squadron’s departure from the Far East on 23rd August 1966.

[Source: Marham Aviation Heritage Centre]


Aircraft

The squadron was equipped with the following aircraft types (from Cottesmore Pool):

AVRO VULCAN B2

Profile © Malcolm Barrass

It is worth noting that aircraft were on charge of the station, with Centralised Servicing in place. As such, the squadron badge did not appear on the tailplane, although it was displayed on the entrance door

The following link provides more details about the aircraft that were available from the station pool, along with information on known losses and incidents: