Hawk handover marks RAF100 in Scotland

The Museum of Flight at East Fortune has become the only museum in the UK with a Red Arrows jet on display.

(c) Neil Hanna

The British Aerospace Hawk T1A was donated by the Ministry of Defence and has gone on permanent display at the site in East Lothian.

This is one of the many events happening in Scotland to mark our centenary, including a recent historic cross-party debate in the Scottish Parliament where admiration and respect for the RAF was demonstrated. 

(c) Neil Hanna

MSPs from all parties praised the professionalism of the RAF, pointing to the transferable skills acquired by people who serve in the RAF. SNP Veterans Minister Keith Brown said: “the Scottish government will continue to help people to make use of these skills after leaving the armed forces.”

Labour MSP David Stewart’s father served at RAF Kinloss decades ago and Mr Stewart himself served for two terms as part of the parliamentary scheme when he was an MP. He said: "We all owe a debt of gratitude to the RAF".

Conservative MSP Liz Smith talked powerfully of her father's service as a corporal in the RAF at the siege of Malta during the Second World War.  From 1940–42, the fight for the control of the strategically important island of Malta, then a British colony, pitted the air forces and navies of Italy and Germany against the RAF and the Royal Navy. She concluded saying of those who served and are serving in the RAF: "We all owe them so very much."

Liberal Democrat MSP Tavish Scott used his speech to highlight role of Royal Air Force Station Sullom Voe in the Shetland Isles of Scotland. It was a Flying boat base and was closely associated with the adjacent airfield of RAF Scatsta.

One of the key themes of RAF100 is recognising the importance of STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Maths), something that is very much reflected in the RAF100 events in Scotland which include the Primary Engineer Awards, an RAF sponsored event which will take place in Glasgow on 7 June 2018 and The Big Bang Fair which will take place at Perth College on 12 June. 

A very important event in the Scotland programme will be the STEM week that will take place at the Glasgow Science Centre 29 Aug – 2 September 2018.  A full week of STEM events with an RAF theme that will also host the Scottish leg of the RAF100 Aircraft Tour which will include a Sopwith Snipe Biplane, Supermarine Spitfire MkVb, Harrier GR3, and full scale replicas of the Typhoon and the F35 (Lightning II).

In August, the RAF100 themed Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo takes centre stage and promises to one of the highlights of the RAF100 year.