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Oh how things have changed.....

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Oh how things have changed.....

Post by hogman » Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:02 pm

Just found an old journal from years ago when I logged what I had seen...

A trip to RAF Cowden bombing range on 1st June 1988 had the following traffic between 11am and 5pm:-

20x A-10 Hogs (WR)
30x F-111E (UH)
26x F-111F (LN)
12x Jaguar GR1
1x Jaguar T2
9x Tornado GR1
1x Harrier T4

Wow what a day, i wish the ranges were that busy now!

Just thought i would share what things used to be like.

Kevin (Hogman)

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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by Blackjack56 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:30 pm

Oh how true,I remember being at Holbeach ranges years ago and seeing F111's(who usually did a dramatic climb,rollover and dive and then usually missed the target,which was a static ship painted dayglow orange and white)then later on the A10's,jaguars harriers tornadoes(which came thundering in and usually didn't miss the target) etc.today seems it seems very flat in comparison.

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Tiger 1
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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by Tiger 1 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:30 pm

Hi hogman

Your post as certainly stired up the memories of a good day on the range.

Remember sat a Donna Nook in the early 90s when 6 x A10s joined the range in a race track type circuit.

Each pulling up hard inverted over the top and rolling back into a dive for a dry run. Several circuits performed by all 6 jets... then those magic words ( IN HOT ) that would set free the Gau 8 Avenger.

Wow... they let go at the targets and what a sight and sound and just as impressive when they missed with all the sand being kick up into the air in front on the target.

Watching them on Holbeach with rockets was also fantastic, as was the fly bys they sometimes performed before departing the range. ( Switches Safe ) 😊

Thanks for posting hogman... I'm sure alot more range memories will follow.


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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by PeteHemsley » Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:56 pm

I was brought up visiting Otterburn and spadeadam ranges every week. Harriers, jaguars, tornado (f3 and gr1/4), hawks, c130s, German tornado, Belgian f16s were pretty much daily visitors.

Going on with exercises we would get everything involved in TLP including mirage 4 and AMX.

Obviously it's not just aircraft numbers and types that have changed its also tactics and mission profiles. Nowadays we don't need the low level attacks and shows of force.

We may never see these days ever again, but we always have the stories and the memories


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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by PR9 » Fri Jul 27, 2018 3:00 pm

Wish ACMI was still going.
MISSING - x1 Air Force.
If found please return to the UK.

graham luxton
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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by graham luxton » Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:24 pm

More memories - spent a very enjoyable day in the range control tower at Holbeach during Elder Forest 6 March'84
4 x F-104G RNeth AF
4 x F-104G WGAF
8 x Jaguar FAF
22 x Jaguar RAF
8 x Tornado RAF plus another which did a beat up en-route to Wainfleet.
2 x Harrier
2 x F-111E + 3 F-111F
6 x A-10A
Early morning mist forced the cancellation of 8 x NF-5's and at least 2 x flights of A-10's.
Meanwhile across the Wash numerous A-10's, F-111's, Jaguars and Tornado's were seen working Wainfleet.
Inside the tower was an impressive collection of plastic models representing many of the types which had used the range over the years including A-7's. Certainly an interesting range to visit back then with bombing, strafing and ship targets.

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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by F3 » Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:38 pm

I was @ Binbrook on the Tuesday of that Elder Forest. The 4 RNLAF F-104s had night - stopped there and after taking - off returned to carry out an attack on the way home. They were replaced by 4 German ones from Jabo33 which landed @ lunchtime for what looked like a night stop. At around the same time came an attack by 4 FAF Jags. With Coningsby F4s and a pair of RDAF F-104 interceptors also operating out of there it was a very busy scene and quite the best Exercise I ever witnessed. The Elder Forests really were something else!

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The Phantom
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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by The Phantom » Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:47 am

A moment in time that we'll never see again :'(

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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by Blackjack56 » Sat Jul 28, 2018 11:44 am

I only have 2 regrets about those days at Holbeach,number one is i wish i had seen USAF phantoms when they were based here(i used to hear them from king's lynn but i was young'un and didn't know about the ranges at Holbeach and wainfleet) and number two i wish a had a half decent camera at the time of my visits in the 80's...oh for a time machine!

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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by ArabJazzie » Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:25 pm

I was over at Leuchars 1st June 1988 during what has turned out so far to be my one and only week of freedom between school and working life! Wish i had a full log but highlights were new Tornado F3s, Danish F-16s and a probably broke Heyford F-111E.

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eagle driver
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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by eagle driver » Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:55 pm

Memory ! 3 day bashes around the east of the UK from Yorkshire to Suffolk
Mega breakfast in Kate,s Cabin On the A1 North of Peterborough, to meet up with the rest of the One percent quick exchange of info then on North for the bases .We usually had it down to pat as to where to be and when .

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Re: Oh how things have changed.....

Post by woody » Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:51 pm

Can't remember the date but know it was mid 80s. Brother drove me over to RAE Bedford for a day out. Teacher's strike that day. Can't remember everything but certainly saw

TR1 from Alconbury doing circuits
2 Canberras from Wyton doing the same
Monarch 757 crew training
RAE Tornado GR1 (I think)
UH F111 x 3 doing missed approaches
Other RAE aircraft including BAC 111, Viscount, Wessex, Seaking and Canberra.
Can someone invent a time machine please!


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