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The 80's

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The 80's

Postby Ian in Leeds » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:12 am

Having had some time of this week and having visited Lakenheath and Mildenhall to see the F-22&F-35's it got me thinking about the 80's and the following:
1) How many UK and USAFE military aircraft there was based here and in Europe.
2) How many deployments there were from USAF and European Air Arms.
3) How big the annual exercises were.

Having started to review my old BARG magazines which are still a brilliant read and a source of information i thought i would share for our younger members what they missed in the 80's as well as reminding the more mature of us what a great time the 89's & 90's were.

To start of I thought I would provide an overview of the scale of the numbers and types of front-line jets in use (Point 1) in 1986. I have included the Chivenor and Brawdy Hawks as they used to support in the short range air defence role.

Lossiemouth
226OCU - 23 x Jaguars
237OCU - 5 x Hunters & 7 x Buccaneers
12 Sqn - 3 x Hunters & 14 x Buccaneers
208 Sqn - 2 x Hunters & 14 x Buccaneers

Leuchars
43 Sqn - 15 x Phantom FG.1
111 Sqn -17 x Phantom FG.1

Honington
TWCU - 30 Tornado GR.1

Coltishall - Numbers to be confirmed
6 Sqn - x Jaguar GR.1
41 Sqn - x Jaguar GR.1A
54 Sqn - x Jaguar GR.1

Wattisham
56 Sqn - 15 x Phantom FGR.2
74 Sqn - 14 x Phantom F-4J

Coningsby
228OCU - 19 x Phantom FGR.2
229OCU - 11 x Tornado F3
29 Sqn - 14 x Phantom FGR.2

Binbrook
LTF - 15 x Lightning
5 Sqn - 12 x Lightning F.6
11 Sqn - 13 x Lightning F.6

Wyton
231OCU - 10 x Canberra B2/F4
100 Sqn - 17 x Canberra B.2/TT.18/E.15/PR.7
360 Sqn - 12 x Canberra T.17
1PRU - 5 x PR.9

Marham
27 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR.1
617 Sqn - 13 x Tornado GR.1

Brawdy
79 Sqn - 12 x Hawk T1A
234 Sqn - 17 x Hawk T1A

Wittering
233OCU - 21 x Harrier GR3
1Sqn - 12 x Harrier GR3

Cottesmore
TTTE comprised aircraft of UK, German and Italian Air Forces
A Sqn - 10 x Tornado GR.1
B Sqn - 8 x Tornado GR.1
C Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR.1
Std Sqn - 6 x Tornado GR.1

Yeovilton
FRADU - 26 x Hunters
800 Sqn - 5 x Sea Harrier FRS.1
801Sqn - 5 x Sea Harrier FRS.1
899 Sqn - TBC x Sea Harrier FRS.1

Lakenheath
492--495TFS - 61 x F-111F

Upper Heyford
42ECS - 13 x EF-111A
55TFS - 25 x F-111E
77TFS - 27 x F-111E
79TFS - 24 x F-111E

Alconbury
527AS - 18 x F-5E
10TFW - 19 x RF-4C

Woodbridge
78TFS - 19 x A-10A
91TFS - 21 x A-10A

Bentwaters
92, 509-511TFS - 80 x A-10A

EUROPEAN BASED
GERMANY

Bruggen
9 Sqn - 11 x Tornado GR1
14 Sqn - 13 x Tornado GR1
17 Sqn - 13 x Tornado GR1
31 Sqn - 13 x Tornado GR1

Gutersloh
3 Sqn - 16 x Harrier GR3
4 Sqn - 17 x Harrier GR3

Wildenrath
19 Sqn - 12 x Phantom FGR2
92 Sqn - 10 x Phantom FGR2

Laarbruch
15 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1
16 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1
20 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1

Hahn
10TFS - 25 x F-16C
313TFS - 21 x F-16C
496TFS - 28 x F-16C

Ramstein
512TFS - 23 x F-16C
526TFS - 15 x F-16C
86TFW - 36 x Phantom F-4E - being replaced by 16's

Spangdahlem
52TFW - comprising 55 x Phantom F-4E & 27 x Phantom F-4E

Zweibrucken
26TRW -20 x Phantom RF-4C

Bitburg
22TFS - 26 x F-15C/D
53TFS - 27 x F-15C/D
525TFS - 26 x F-15C/D

SPAIN
Torrejon
612-614TFS 81 x F-16A/B

NETHERLANDS
Soesterberg
32TFS - 26 x F-15C/D

ICELAND
Keflavik
57FIS -20 x F-15C/D

I haven't included heavies or trainers but just from the above you will note the huge difference in numbers and you literally couldn't keep up if you were logging flights on a daily basis.

As for the exercises and numbers involved only one word WOW!!

Ian in Leeds
Ian in Leeds
 

Re: The 80's

Postby Blackcat1 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:29 am

The exercises in the 80s and early 90s were awesome especially at low level in my part of the World (Brecon Beacons/Sennybridge) 40/50 movements in a couple of hours,now you wait a few hours or a whole day to see 1 movement! Those certain!y were the days!
Gareth

6 Sqdn Canopeners
Oculi exercitus
Blackcats remembered
Jaguar Force Excellance! 2nd July 07.
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Re: The 80's

Postby Maurits37 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:20 am

a few additions:

Laarbruch
2sqn - 11x Tornado GR1A
15 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1
16 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1
20 Sqn - 14 x Tornado GR1

Spangdahlem
52TFW - comprising 55 x Phantom F-4E & 27 x Phantom F-4E
23TFS
81TFS
480TFS
Cheers,

Maurits
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Re: The 80's

Postby Thunder » Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:21 am

120 A-10's based in the UK alone, says it all really. Deployments, exchanges and Ranger flights were a weekly affair, at least somewhere in the UK something was happening.

You've missed the FRADU Canberras.
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Re: The 80's

Postby powerslave » Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:22 am

Yeah I certainly remember the 80''s even though I was a kid still at school.
Only place I could get to was Warton on the bus from Preston and I used to spend my summer holidays there.
The amount of aircraft being test flown,also the amount of aircraft which passed through,everything from Hawks to F-111's.
Used to love going to Lake District and places like Scarborough,you could see a load of jets passing through each day whatever the weather.
It's a pity we did'nt all have great cameras,scanners etc in those times.

Ian
powerslave
 
Location: Preston,Lancs.

Re: The 80's

Postby slogen51 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:29 am

My first trip to Lakenheath (via National bus from Victoria station to Mildenhall) 5 March 77 - Logged 53 LN F-4D by walking along the fence at the A1065 - all outside ( no HAS I presume)

Edit : I do apologize this thread is for the 80s
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Location: Surrey and Norfolk

Re: The 80's

Postby Blackcat1 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:12 pm

Totally agree Ian, so sad those days have gone. People now think low fly is busy if they see a Tornado and a couple of Hawks!
Gareth

6 Sqdn Canopeners
Oculi exercitus
Blackcats remembered
Jaguar Force Excellance! 2nd July 07.
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Location: Edge of the Brecon Beacons, South Wales

Re: The 80's

Postby Durranhill » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:19 pm

Have you made a typo with the F-4E's at Spang , should the 27 x E's not be be F-4G's ? .

Stewart .
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Re: The 80's

Postby Ian in Leeds » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:27 pm

Hi all

Thanks for your comments and updates and as regards the FRADU Canberra's missed that and Stuart you are correct as regards the Guardian variants at Spang.
Next task is provide overview of exercises and participants including airfield attacks and lunch stops.

Cheers

Ian in Leeds
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Re: The 80's

Postby TankBuster » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:55 pm

Good times!
I remember the 80's very well, you couldn't drive along the A12 in Suffolk or the A14 (A45 as it was back then) without seeing, A-10s F-4s F-5s F-111s CH-53s MC-130s & F-16s! Cracking times indeed :thumbs:.

TankBuster
And there's plenty more where that came from!
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Re: The 80's

Postby pg1610 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:04 pm

Ian in Leeds wrote:Hi all

Thanks for your comments and updates and as regards the FRADU Canberra's missed that and Stuart you are correct as regards the Guardian variants at Spang.
Next task is provide overview of exercises and participants including airfield attacks and lunch stops.

Cheers

Ian in Leeds


Ian there is a website that lists most if not all USAF deployments into Europe back in the day, but for the life of me I cannot find the link
good idea to post some historical stuff maks what was a busy day yesterday at Lakenheath seem boring in comparison
pg1610
 


Re: The 80's

Postby Ian in Leeds » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:18 pm

Thanks that's the one.

Ian in Leeds
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Re: The 80's

Postby magnum » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:46 pm

Probably also worth a mention were the Canadians at Baden-Soellingen with their CF-104's, then CF-18's. Regular visitors to the UK.
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Re: The 80's

Postby Blue Diamond » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:24 pm

Where can I buy me a TARDIS? Great post and a reminder of what we've lost since the end of the Cold War.
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Re: The 80's

Postby Phil » Sat Apr 22, 2017 4:22 pm

Not sure why I got back into the hobby, far less aircraft, but double the amount of clowns!
Last edited by Phil on Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:42 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The 80's

Postby Stroudy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 8:36 am

89x F-111's at UH alone. Things are beyond different now!
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Re: The 80's

Postby Vulcanone » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:18 am

I also have copies of BAR from 1976 (minus 1977) right upto October 1999. I sure its a cracking read from what was based at and what visited on such and such day. And the group did 2 British Military serials book as well as the book about the Falklands war.

I grew up in Immingham so most of the stuff that went into Binbrook often came over the town. It was even more fun on exercise weeks when they had Hunters and then Hawks performing CAPs over the Oil Refineries up the road.

by the time I started working in London it was evident the cull had begun :(


Tim
South of the North Pole, But North of the South Pole...
Vulcanone
 

Re: The 80's

Postby Unknown74 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:04 pm

My first full Year of being interested in Aviation was 1987 and I remember a deployment of U.S. Marine Corps F-18 Hornets arrived at RAF Turnhouse near Edinburgh en-eoute to Europe they were from VMFA-122 at MCAS Beaufort and I remember they had a sort of mini-open afternoon for the Marine Corps Aircraft.

I also remember a similar deployment in 1988 but unfortunately Turnhouse didn't hold another similar open event for them. Mind you it was only recently I discovered I had missed A-4 Skyhawks the Year before.
Unknown74
 

Re: The 80's

Postby welshandy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:51 pm

From my post I put on Fighter Control Mess in 2011 & numbers taken from Ian Allen Military Aircraft Markings 1984. Before EF111's arrived this is USAFE on the 31st Dec 1983,

3 numbered Air Forces :- 3rd,16th & 17th + TAC's 57th FIS.

15 Wings,39 Sqn's of which 33 were fighter/strike(inc the 57thFIS & 527th TFTAS*).

3rd Air Force(uk) :- 342 a/c. 123-A10A, 77-F111E, 85-F111F, 20-RF4C, 19-F5E, 4-EC135H, 3-TR1A, 6-HC130, 5-HH53C

16th Air Force(sth europe) :- 71 a/c. 44-F4D, 27-F16.

17th Air Force(central europe) :- 485 a/c. 23-RF4C, 111-F4E, 26-F4G, 104-F15, 107-F16, 44-OV10A, 6-C9A, 7-C12A, 5-VC140B, 15-T/CT39A, 4-UH1N, 8-CH53C, 21-C130E,
4-MC130E.

TAC 57th FIS :- 14-F4E

Total 912(does not inc TDY KC135's & SR71's) of which 737 were fighter/strike a/c
* F5E's had a War time role as point defence fighters.
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Location: Llanwnog,Nr Caersws Powys

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