united kingdom 26 Flight

Army Air Corps

26 Flt :


I was with 1st Division Engineers Air Troop attached to 26 flight in Verden Aller Germany, We were formed in 1965 and had 2 Sioux AH Mk1 XT198 and XT199. Our job was Observing for the ground troops, aerial photography of bridges and sites. 26 Flight had French Allouette Aztasou with Jet engines at that time. XR232, XR967. Our troop was involved in operation Phantom Sail from 26Jan67 to 24Feb67 in Libya. As we left, Gadaffi took over power from King Idris. Being the Air Traffic Controller I spoke on occasions to his aircraft as the King was flying between El Adem and Tripoli. It took 2 days to fly from RAF Gutersloh to Nice to Luqa, Malta to El Adem, Libya. It took 6 hours over the Med from Nice to Libya in a Beverley XB284
I was with 26 Flt AAC in Verden. Initially the Engineers Air Troop had Saunders Roe Skeeters, which were then replaced by the Sioux aircraft. Our Allouetts were replaced by Westland Scouts which were later equipped with wire guided missiles.. I have afew photographs of the flight with Alouettes and Scouts.. Our hangar was an old second world war Cavalry stables. In the hotter weather it was not unusual to see a Skeeter take off and actually inadvertently run up the roof of the stables to gain enough forward speed to take off. It was so cold there in the winter months that it was a regular thing for us to have to unstick the aircraft skids from the ice and to use space heaters before we were able to start the machines. Also if you did not wear gloves you were likely to leave some of your skin on the frameworks of the machines.

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1968/71DE Verden


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