31 Squadron Presented with their New Squadron Standard

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Last month saw another historic event take place when 31 Squadron were presented with their new Squadron Standard at a ceremony held on the Station.

The Band of the RAF Regiment led in the parade of personnel from 31 Squadron who escorted the old Standard. The old Standard was paraded in front of families and friends and local dignitaries before being ‘retired’, the new Standard was then presented to the Squadron.

Although the greatest care is taken to preserve a Standard in the finest condition. White gloves are always worn when handling it and a guard will protect it when displayed at an event; in time they will deteriorate and where necessary they are then replaced.

In an interesting twist the new 31 Squadron Standard was presented by Air Marshal Bagwell who in 1986 was himself the young Flying Officer who received the outgoing Squadron Standard!

Wing Commander Rich Yates,  Officer Commanding 31 Sqn said “It is a great privilege for the Squadron to receive a new Standard and particularly poignant today to have Air Marshall Bagwell here to present it. To be gathered with our friends and families to honour this occasion, marks another memorable and important day in the history of the Goldstars.”

31 Squadron are due to return to Afghanistan later this year as the final Squadron deployed in support of Operation HERRICK. With the 31 Squadron motto of ‘First into Indian Skies’ it seems appropriate that they are now  lining up to become the ‘Last into Afghan Skies.’

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