The aircraft were parked under sun screens to allieviate the worst of the heat

Strike and Fighter Aircraft

Picture: Tornado parked under sun screen to allieviate the worst of the heat.

Strike Aircraft

Please note - Some (in fact much) of the nose art carried by RAF aircraft during Operation Granby can be termed as "risque". If you are easily offended, please be warned!!


Mobilized for combat inside two weeks, the Buccaneers were the last RAF Aircraft to deploy to the region, Nos 12 and 208 Squadrons along with personnel from No 237 OCU at Lossiemouth moving to Muharraq in January 1991. The nose art applied to the Bucaneers was based on a variety of famous single malt whiskeys celebrating the Buccaneer's association with the Scottish RAF bases. Many of the aircraft also sported a variety of ladies names.

The Bucaneers in theatre came from No 12 and 208 Squadrons and 237 OCU.


Bucaneers were rapidly deployed from the UK to support precision bombing with laser target markers.


Buccaneer "Sky Pirates", a 208 Squadron aircraft.

The Buccaneers flew laser-targeting support missions for guided-munition armed bombers as well as bomber missions in their own right. This aircraft is also armed with AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles for self defence.

See Buccanner Nose Art Gallery


Jaguars from all three squadrons at Coltishall (Nos 6, 41 and 54) deployed initially to Thumrait in Oman in August 1990 before transferring to Muharraq in October. The aircraft were painted with both ladies names, and strangely, a variety of characters from the comic magazine 'Viz'. The noses also sported scoreboards recording the aircraft's mission successes.

The Jaguars in theatre came from No 6, 41 and 54 Squadrons.


Jaguar equipped with over-wing pylons for sidewinder missiles.

Jaguar 'Mary Rose'

Jaguar "Mary Rose", a 41 Squadron aircraft.

See Jaguar Nose Art

Tornado GR1 and 1a

Tornado GR1 and 1a

The Strike and Reconnaisance Tornados in theatre came from No II(AC), IX, 13, 14, XV, 16, 17, 27, 31 and 617 Squadrons.

See Strike and Reconnaisance Tornado Colours

Fighter Aircraft

Tornado F3

Twelve Tornado F3s of Nos 5 and 29 Squadrons which were on detachment to Akrotiri, Cypus, were amongst the first RAF aircraft to arrive in Saudi Arabia in August 1990 but by the end of the month, 18 Leeming-based aircraft had replaced them led by No XI Squadron. These in turn were replaced by members of Nos 43 and 29 Squadrons by the end of the year. The F3 aircraft remained in their overall grey schemes, operating as they did at high level. Individual markings were limited largely to the application of two aircraft letters on the fin.

The Tornado F3s in theatre came from No 5, XI, 29 and 43 Squadrons.

Tornado F3

The Tornado F3s remained in their original grey scheme.

The Tornado F3 Squadrons largely flew Combat Air Patrols. Here the second aircraft is equipped with a Tornado GR drop-tank in the sand scheme.

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