Ceremony at HMS Sultan marks 100 years since creation of squadron

A CEREMONY marking the formation of a squadron 100 years ago was held at HMS Sultan.

Wednesday, 9th March 2016, 6:12 am

Number 45 (Reserve) Squadron from Royal Air Force College Cranwell laid a wreath at a memorial outside the Gosport base.

The memorial marks the site where the squadron was formed on March 1, 1916.

The ceremony saw the parading of the Squadron Standard.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

It was followed by the laying of a wreath by the officer commanding 45 (Reserve) Squadron, Wing Commander David Catlow, and the officer commanding 45 (F) Squadron Air Training Corps, Flight Lieutenant Maria Muggridge.

A one-minute silence was also held, led by Padre (Squadron Leader) Colin O’Dell.

Wing Commander Catlow said: ‘This has been a heart warming and truly humbling experience.

‘It has been good to take the time to look back on the frustrations and difficulties faced by our predecessors and to see how we now reap the rewards of their dedication to the Royal Flying Corps and military aviation.

‘In particular, their dedication to the mobilisation of the fighting unit that, now as a flying training squadron, can proudly instil the ‘esprit de corps’ into the junior aviators of the Royal Air Force and British Army.’

Although the airfield is now a housing estate, the technical site remains Ministry of Defence property.

A small memorial outside the main gate commemorates the many forms which early aviation took, and the inevitable obstacles which confronted the early pioneers.