Planes, Eggs, and a Prince

The Duke of Cambridge visited Royal Air Force Coningsby earlier today.

RAF Coningsby is home to two Front Line Squadrons, along with an Operational Training Squadron and a Test and Evaluation Squadron.

The Duke visited the 29 Squadron, which trains new Typhoon pilots as well as providing refresher training to pilots who are returning to fly the Typhoon after completing other duties.

It was during this part of his visit William viewed one of the world-class multi-role fighters, before speaking to RAF crew who maintain and fly the aircraft.

The former air ambulance pilot also met trainee Typhoon pilots, who will be the future of the RAF.

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Typhoon Force personnel are currently involved in operations in Iraq and Syria. They also patrol the skies of the UK and the Falkland Islands, manning NATO Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) operations at RAF Coningsby and Mount Pleasant Airfield.

RAF Coningsby is also home to a new Coningsby Engagement Centre. The centre is the first of its kind at an RAF base.

The recently opened centre allows visitors to learn the story of RAF Coningsby since it began in March 1941. During World War II, the base was a bomber station hosting various types including the Lancasters of No 617 Squadron.

Following the war, it remained a bomber station equipped with Canberras and Avro Vulcans, before shifting into a fast jet station in the late 1960s.

The primary goal of the new centre is to engage the local community in RAF Coningsby’s past as well as inspiring its future.

After his visit to the Heritage Centre, Prine William, who is Honorary Air Commandant of RAF Coningsby, joined local schoolchildren in the new STEM classroom. The class provides an exciting place to interest young people in the subjects of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

HRH then joined a group of children as they took part in a session to create a mechanism to drop an egg from a set height. The activity allowed the students a quick introduction to the physics behind real-life RAF situations.

The Duke watched some of the children give live demonstrations of their mechanisms, before officially opening the Engagement Centre.

Wrapping up his day, William joined a group from across RAF Coningsby for a working lunch in the Officers’ Mess.

During the lunch, he met representatives from all of the squadrons and chatted about their roles and current operations.

Joining the group for lunch also were members of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, also based at RAF Coningsby, of which William is Patron.

William gave up his wings in July 2017 after spending time working as an air ambulance pilot with East Anglia Air Ambulance.

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