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The Falklands War 1982: The Build-up to Operation Black Buck

On 2 April 1982, Argentina invaded and occupied the Falkland Islands. It was the beginning of a ten-week conflict that ended with the Argentines surrendering on 14 June and the islands returning back to British control.  On a rare weekend…

Falklands War 1982: The Argentines Surrender

Header image: RAF Waddington 1982 | Engineers and flight crew with the Vulcan prior to deployment to Ascension Island On 14 June 1982, Argentine ground forces surrendered, signalling the end of the Falklands War and the islands returned back to…

An interview with Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown on the first jet landing on an aircraft carrier

Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown is credited with over 2,400 carrier landings (no one else has come close) as well as being the holder of numerous ‘firsts’. He made the first landings on an aircraft carrier of a twin-engine aircraft, an aircraft with a…

Britain’s Nuclear Deterrent Development – Part Four

On 8 May 1945, Winston Churchill announced German armed forces had surrendered unconditionally. But, the World War had not completely ended. In his speech announcing VE Day Churchill spoke of Japan, saying “We may allow ourselves a brief period of…

Skybolt Programme Cancellation – 22 December 1962

The UK was the third country, after the United States and the Soviet Union, to develop and test nuclear weapons. The research and development of such weapons began during World War II, with participation from Canada, in the classified ‘Tube…

Britain’s Nuclear Deterrent Development – Part Six

Two weeks before the first nuclear weapon was used for warfare, dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, the results of the UK general election were announced. On 26 July 1945, Labour had won power and Clement Attlee was appointed…

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NEWS

The latest news from the Trust

Vulcan XH558 Engineering and Events Update – April 2022

On Sunday 10 April, we welcomed visitors to the first engine ground-run of 2022 – Feel The Howl! A short journey by coach took visitors from the meeting point, through airport security and on to the airfield where XH558 is parked.…

Autumn update from Vulcan to the Sky Trust

Many of you will have seen the sad news that Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA) is to cease operating as an airport later this year and our thoughts go to the employees, many of whom we have worked closely with for…

A Statement from the Vulcan to the Sky Trust

John Sharman, chair of the Vulcan to the Sky Trust said: “It is with great sadness that the Trustees of The Vulcan to the Sky Trust announce the sudden death of Dr Robert Pleming on February 2. “Robert was a…

Vulcan XH558 Engineering and Events Update – February 2022

In the last couple of months, while XH558’s engines have been in winter hibernation, our team has continued to give the aircraft plenty of TLC. Most of the work to prepare her for another year of events has been on…

March Lottery Draw

558 Lottery winners announced for March 2021

January Lottery Draw

558 Lottery winners announced for January 2022

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AIRCRAFT

Read about the aircraft

Vulcan XH558

Avro Vulcan serial number XH558 was ordered under a MoD contract placed in September 1954. XH558 was completed at Avro’s Woodford factory in 1960 and was first flown on 25 May that year. The aircraft was finally completed on 30…

Vulcan XL427

Completed on 29 September 1962 and fitted with Olympus 201 engines. Blue Steel modified. Served with: 83 Squadron October 1962 (Scampton Wing), 617 Squadron September 1969, 27 Squadron March 1971, 230 OCU June 1972, 617 Squadron July 1972, 230 OCU…

Canberra WK163

Built by AV Roe at Woodford in 1954 as part of a contract for 100 B2 Canberra aircraft, WK163 was taken on charge with controller (aircraft) on 28th January 1955. The same day the aircraft was transferred to Armstrong Siddeley…

Vulcan VX770

In 1946 the Air Ministry drew up requirements for bombers to replace the existing piston-engine heavy bombers such as the Avro Lancaster and the Avro Lincoln. The Air Staff Operational Requirement OR.229 was for ‘a medium-range bomber landplane capable of…

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SQUADRONS

Read about the squadrons that operated the aircraft

44 (Rhodesia) Squadron

Fulmina regis iusta – (The King’s thunderbolts are righteous) Badge: On a mount an elephant. Based upon the seal of Lo Bengula, the chief of the Matabeles on conquest. The seal shows an elephant which, in the case of this…

83 Squadron

Strike to defend Badge: An attire. The red deer’s antler is in reference to the squadron’s association with Scotland. The attire has six points commemorating an outstanding occasion in the First World War when six DFCs were awarded for one…

35 (XXXV) Squadron

Uno animo agimus – (We act with one accord) Badge: A horse’s head winged. The badge commemorates co-operation with the Calvary during the First World War. Formed on 1 February 1916 at Thetford, Norfolk, from a nucleus flight of No.9…

230 OCU

No. 230 Operational Conversion Unit was first created on 15 Mar 1947 at RAF Lindholme, by re-designation of No. 1653 Heavy Conversion Unit RAF, to convert crews onto the Avro Lancaster, Avro Lincoln and de Havilland Mosquito bombers. This unit…

101 Squadron

Mens agitat molem – (Mind over matter) Badge: Issuant from the battlements of a tower, a demi lion rampant guardant – approved by King George VI in February 1938. The battlements symbolise the Squadron’s pioneering role in the development of…

12 (B) Squadron

Leads the Field Badge: A fox’s mask – approved by King George VI in February 1937. Based on a suggestion when the squadron was equipped with the Fairey Fox, an aircraft of which they were proud and the sole operators.…

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AIRFIELD

Read about where all aircraft were located

RAF Cottesmore

We Rise to Our Obstacles RAF Cottesmore opened on 11 March 1938. The station was used mainly for training, and the first squadrons were equipped with Vickers Wellesley aircraft, but soon converted to Fairey Battles. Later RAF Bomber Command took…

RAF Wyton

In times of heightened international tension, the V-force, already loaded with their nuclear weapons, could be flown from their main base to a further 26 dispersal bases, where they could be kept at a few minutes readiness to take-off. The…

RAF Honington

RAF Honington is a Royal Air Force station located 6 mi (9.7 km) south of Thetford near Ixworth in Suffolk, England. Although used as a bomber station during the Second World War, RAF Honington is now the RAF Regiment depotConstruction…

RAF Waddington

RAF Waddington is located beside the village of Waddington, just south of Lincoln. The station opened in 1916 as a Royal Flying Corps flying training station. Hundreds of pilots, including members of the US Army, were taught to fly a…

RAF Scampton

RAF Scampton stands on the site of a First World War Royal Flying Corps landing field, which had been called Brattleby. The station was closed and returned to agriculture following the First World War, and reactivated in the 1930s. It…

RAF Gaydon

RAF Gaydon is a former Royal Air Force station located 5.2 miles (8.4 km) east of Wellesbourne, Warwickshire and 10.8 miles (17.4 km) north west of Banbury, Oxfordshire. RAF Gaydon opened in 1942 and is known for its role during…

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