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Published: 01 Aug 2019

TODAY six aircrew graduated and joined the trained strength of the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm at Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton, Somerset. 

On 825 Naval Air Squadron (NAS) a celebration of aircrew as they graduate from the training environment to the frontline and are awarded their “Flying Wings” and certificates of competency by Vice Admiral Jerry Kyd CBE and in the presence of Rear Admiral Martin Connell, Rear Admiral Fleet Air Arm.

Commanding Officer 825 NAS welcomed everyone to the parade and before handing over to the Fleet Commander said; 

These six aviators are now ready to join the trained strength of the Royal Navy and they are ready for operations on the frontline as I hand them to 815 NAS. Receiving ‘Wings’ today is the pinnacle of any aviator’s career, they will have been tested to their absolute limits and beyond on occasions and completed the most difficult of challenges. They are now ready.” 

Once the newly qualified aviators had received their ‘Wings’ Vice Admiral Kyd said:

It is hugely uplifting to be here today and to see what a close family the Fleet Air Arm (FAA) is. I have had the privilege to be closely tied to the FAA throughout my career and it’s been a fantastic journey to watch as this critical Fighting Arm leads us in 21st century operations. The future is extremely bright for the FAA.

It has taken many years of training to reach this point and it’s not for the faint hearted. It takes commitment, flare, intelligence and a Flight that works together and trains together. The sea is not a friend to us and you must remain professional and focused. The Wildcat is a fantastic aircraft and part of our National Security.”

For three Pilots and three Observers this marks the official start of their flying career within the Fleet Air Arm on the Royal Navy’s newest helicopter, the Wildcat HMA2. As they leave 825 NAS they quite literally move to the hangar next door at 815 NAS from where they will be required to deploy globally on operations at sea.

The Wildcat is the latest and greatest of military helicopters to be brought into the Fleet Air Arm on the Wildcat Maritime Force operation out of RNAS Yeovilton. 825 NAS is delivering first class training to aircrew and engineers while generating frontline Wildcat Flights in support of operations worldwide.

The opportunity was taken to present further awards and medals, including two Long Service Good Conduct Medals in recognition of the wider achievements of 825 NAS personnel and their exceptional service and commitment!


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