Norfolk-based F-35 Lightning fighter jets join RAF centenary flypast

Lawrence Kim
July 10, 2018

It was then carrying on over the M25, Stapleford Abbotts, Hainault Forest and on to central London - passing the Olympic Park, Hackney, Bethnal Green and Shoreditch before getting to Buckingham Palace and The Mall at around 1pm.

Up to 100 aircraft took part in a flypast over London to mark 100 years of the Royal Air Force.

In their biggest ever formation, 22 Typhoon jets spelt out the number 100 in the sky - an added surprise for the royals, personnel and the throngs of public spectators who had packed out the streets to watch.

"Presenting the Royal Air Force with a new Queen's colour provides an opportunity to congratulate the service for your remarkable contribution to defence over the last 100 years", the Queen said.

It was 100 years ago on April 1, 1918, that the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service merged to create the RAF - the world's first independent air service.

"Tenacity, skill and gallantry have been your hallmarks", she said. "I remember the Battle of Britain being fought over the skies above us and we shall never forget the courage and sacrifice of that time".

Ahead of the flyby, the monarch, whose father King George VI was a founding RAF member, made a speech in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace.

The RAF's new cutting-edge stealth fighter F-35 jets featured, making their first ever public appearance, as well as helicopters including the Puma, Chinook, Juno and Jupiter, while the Red Arrows completed the fly-past followed by a stream of red, white and blue.

Her Majesty and other members of the royal family, including the Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, were among guests watching the spectacle from the balcony of the palace.

Britain's Prince Charles, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Queen Elizabeth, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry, Prince William, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Princess Anne stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace as they watch a fly past to mark the centenary of the Royal Air Force in central London, Britain July 10, 2018.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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