No. 70 Squadron RAF

No. 70 Squadron RAF
No. LXX Squadron RAF
70 Squadron badge
Active 1916-1920
1948 - 2010
Role Air Transport
Garrison/HQ RAF Lyneham
Motto "Usquam" (Everywhere)
Equipment C-130 Hercules
A demi-wing lion erased

No. 70 Squadron (also known as No. LXX Squadron) of the Royal Air Force most recently operated the Lockheed Hercules from RAF Lyneham, Wiltshire until September 2010.[1]



World War I

The squadron was formed on April 22, 1916 at Farnborough, and was equipped with the Sopwith 1½ Strutter. The squadron was posted to France, and in 1917 re-equipped with Sopwith Camels. The squadron briefly disbanded in January 1920, reforming nine days later at Heliopolis, Egypt via the renumbering of No. 58 Squadron. The squadron was equipped with the Vickers Vimy bomber.

A Sopwith 1½ Strutter #A1924 of 70th Squadron RAF. Wrecked 20 October 1916

During World War I, the squadron claimed 287 victories, and had as members nineteen aces, including Frank Granger Quigley, John Todd, Frank Hobson, Oscar Heron, Frank Gorringe, Walter M. Carlaw, George Robert Howsam, Clive Franklyn Collett, Alfred Michael Koch, Kenneth Bowman Watson, Noel Webb, Edward Gribben, and Frederic Laurence.[2]

Reformed for World War II

During the inter-war years the squadron operated various types of aircraft including; the Vernon, the Victoria and from 1935 the Valentia. With the outbreak of the Second World War the Valentias were replaced by Wellingtons during 1940. The squadron operated Wellingtons until February 1945 when it converted to Liberators. The squadron disbanded in April 1947.

Post World War II

The squadron reformed in May 1948, at Kabrit, Egypt when No. 215 Squadron was renumbered No. 70 Squadron. The squadron was equipped with Dakotas until 1950, when it re-equipped with Valettas. In 1955, the squadron moved to Cyprus and re-equipped with the Hastings. After a brief period operating Argosys, the squadron began conversion to the Hercules in 1970, and moved to RAF Lyneham in 1975, after 55 years overseas. After 35 years of operating the Hercules C1/C3 from Lyneham, the squadron disbanded in September 2010. It is expected to reform in 2014 as the first RAF Airbus A400M squadron.[1]

Aircraft operated


Dates Aircraft Variant Notes
1916–1917 Sopwith 1½ Strutter Single-engined biplane fighter
1917–1919 Sopwith Camel Single-engined biplane fighter
1919 Sopwith Snipe Single-engined biplane fighter
1920 Handley Page 0/400 Twin-engined biplane bomber
1920–1922 Vickers Vimy Twin-engined biplane bomber
1922–1926 Vickers Vernon Twin-engined biplane transport
Vickers Victoria I
Twin-engined biplane transport
1935–1940 Vickers Valentia Twin-engined biplane transport
Vickers Wellington III
Twin-engined medium bomber
1945–1946 Consolidated Liberator VI Four-engined bomber
1946–1947 Avro Lancaster B1(FE) Four-engined bomber
1948–1950 Douglas Dakota Twin-engined transport
1950–1956 Vickers Valetta C1 Twin-engined transport
1956–1968 Handley Page Hastings C1 and C2 Four-engined transport
1967–1975 Armstrong Whitworth Argosy C1 Four-engined transport
1970–1980 Lockheed Hercules C1 Four-engined transport
1980–2010 Lockeed Hercules C3 Four-engined transport

See also

  • List of RAF squadrons


  • Jefford, C.G. (1988). RAF Squadrons. Airlife Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1 85310 053 6. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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