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RAF Shawbury in Shropshire trains around 1,000 students a year from across the UK Armed Services and international partners to be robust, resilient military personnel, technically second to none.
The Defence Helicopter Flying School trains aircrew for the RAF, Royal Navy and British Army. The Central Flying School (Helicopter) delivers the next generation of helicopter instructors.
The School of Air Operations Control trains the next generation of controllers, delivers training to those about to deploy on operations, and trains selected personnel as instructors.
There are approximately 1,200 personnel working at RAF Shawbury, around 500 Service personnel supported by MOD civilian and contractor colleagues.
Gp Capt ‘Chuck’ Norris became Station Commander of RAF Shawbury, Commandant Defence Helicopter Flying School and Commandant Defence College of Airspace Control in May 2017. As a Support Helicopter pilot, Search and Rescue pilot and qualified A2 instructor he has served around the globe. His Staff tours have been in MOD, Air Command and PJHQ, as well as 2 tours as Air Liaison Officer at both Div (HQ 6 Div/RC(S)) and Corps Level (HQ ARRC) with the Army.
Royal Air Force Shawbury, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY4 4DZ.
705 NAS was created when 705 Flight was granted Squadron status in 1939, operating the Swordfish torpedo bomber from Battlecruisers. It was disbanded in 1940 before a brief reformation in 1945 as a Torpedo Training Unit. In 1947, the Squadron began its association with rotary aviation when it was re-commissioned to study the use of helicopters at sea with the first deck landing on a Royal Navy warship. It began its association with flying training in the 1950s when it became responsible for training all RN helicopter pilots. In April 1997, the Squadron moved to RAF Shawbury as part of the Defence Helicopter Flying School.
The Squadron was first formed as an Army Co-operation Sqn on 31 July 1943 at Old Sarum airfield flying the Auster AOP 3. The Sqn has since disbanded and reformed 3 times most recently becoming an integral part of DHFS on 01 April 1997.
The Sqn Motto ‘E Coelis Auxilum’ means ‘Assistance form the Skies’ which originates from its role in WW2.
The Defence Helicopter Flying School (DHFS) is based at RAF Shawbury. An independent unit within the Station, its task is to provide basic single-engine helicopter training for the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and some overseas countries. Additional conversion and refresher courses are also provided for qualified aircrew.
CFS(H) Squadron runs 5 courses a year with approximately 12 pilots and 2 crewmen on each course. The pilots consist mostly of an even mixture of RAF, Royal Navy, Army and foreign Service Pilots. Unlike CFS fixed-wing squadrons, where instructors are taught on the aircraft on which they will eventually instruct, CFS(H) graduates are as likely to find themselves teaching basic students as they are teaching advanced exercises on a frontline operational squadron.
The School of Air Operations Control (SAOC) is the UK Military training centre for all RAF Flight Operations Officers and Trade Group 9 (TG9) Flight Operations Assistants, also RAF and RN Air Traffic Controllers with many Foreign and Commonwealth trainees. SAOC delivers Phase 2 training for ab initio Officer and SNCO Air Traffic Controllers from both the RAF and RN. On completion the Joint Air Traffic Controllers Course (JATCC). SAOC also delivers Phase 2 Training to Flight Operations Officers on the Flight Operations Training Course (FOTC) and to Flight Operations Assistants on the Flight Operations Assistants Course (FOAC) under the aegis of the Flight Operations Training School (FOTS).
An Aircraft Maintenance and Storage Unit has been continuously located at RAF Shawbury in one form or another since 1938 making it the longest in location across the RAF. A number of front-line and training aircraft, not required for day-to-day use, are held in reserve at RAF Shawbury. These spares are stored in four specially de-humidified hangars at varying states of readiness and can be brought back into active service as required by the RAF's overall airframe management policy which aims to equalise fatigue life across the fleet.
ATM Staneval was established to implement the Air Traffic Management Assurance Scheme (ATMAS). The primary task of the ATM Staneval is to assure periodically all RAF Air Traffic Controllers, Flight Operations Officers and Trade Group 9 personnel during a formal operational assurance visit to each RAF ATC unit. The ATM Staneval staff also examines and appoints Local Examining Officers (LEO) at each RAF ATC unit to administer the day-to-day implementation of the ATMAS.
In October 1996 the existing contract was replaced with another contract with FBS, a company formed between Flight Refuelling Aviation, Bristow Helicopters Ltd and Serco. This 15-year contract not only covered the engineering and supply aspects already in place but also included the provision of the 35 Squirrel and Griffin helicopters for the Defence Helicopter Flying School at Shawbury. In practice, FBS now sub-contracts the support of the DHFS and RAF Shawbury to FB Heli Services (formerly FR Aviation Services) thus maintaining the partnership between the company and RAF Shawbury forged over the previous 5 years. Also included in the contract is the provision of 40% of the helicopter instructors, Operations Support staff and Flight Systems Operators in the Central Air Traffic Control School.
The DHFS contract was renewed in 2012 and is due to expire Mar 2016 but have two extension years added to extend it to the start of MFTS in 2018
A Relief Landing Ground for RAF Shawbury used by all three services. It is used for flying training, a role it has fulfilled since it opened in 1940.
A Relief Landing Ground for helicopter trainees based at the nearby RAF Shawbury. It is often where helicopter trainees fly their first solo helicopter flights. Also home to 632 VGS flying the Grob Viking glider.
Welcome to the 6th Edition of ARIES - The Magazine of RAF Shawbury for 2018.
On 15th November 2018, the rotary element of the UK Military Flying Training System (MFTS) achieved the auspicious milestone of 10,000 flying hours.
There has been a great sporting achievement by one of our Air Traffic Controllers, Fg Off Hannah Dodwell here at RAF Shawbury
The Station's association with flying training started in June 1917, with the arrival of No 29 (Flying Training) Wing and the Aeroplane Repair Section of the Royal Flying Corps. However, following the end of World War One, the site reverted back to agricultural use in 1920.
In 1938, Shawbury was re-activated and became home to No 27 Maintenance Unit (MU) and No 11 Flying Training School (FTS).
In 1942, now renamed as No 11 (Pilot) Advanced Flying Unit, the unit received pilots for training from overseas bases.
In January 1944, No 11 (Pilot) Advanced Flying Unit was replaced by the Central Navigation School (CNS).
During the early part of World War Two, few bombers were hitting their targets due to poor navigation standards, particularly at night. The Central Navigation School remit was ‘to consider navigation as a science and to carry out research into the problems of world-wide navigation.’
The Aries series of flights were at the forefront of this. The first and most famous long distance flight was made from RAF Shawbury on 21 October 1944 when 'Aries’ a Lancaster bomber, departed on the first round-the-world trip by a British aircraft.
The arrival in February 1950 of the School of Air Traffic Control (ATC) saw the renaming of the Central Navigation School to the Central Navigation and Control School. In 1963, the Navigation Wing relocated leaving Shawbury the task of training all aspects of Air Traffic Control. The Central Air Traffic Control School was renamed the School of Air Operations Control in 2016.
Helicopters arrived in 1976 with the arrival of 2 Flying Training School and Central Flying School (Helicopter) (CFS(H)). 2 Flying Training School disbanded on 1 April 1997 and was replaced by the new tri-Service Defence Helicopter Flying School.
By 1989 Marshall's Jet Provost fleet was disbanded and the Chipmunks of No 8 Air Experience Flight were dispatched to RAF Newton for disposal on 31 March 1996.
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