F-35 Lightning stealth fighter jets ready to be deployed on operations

Group Captain Ian 'Cab' Townsend, Station Commander at RAF Marham, stands next to Defence Secretary

Group Captain Ian 'Cab' Townsend, Station Commander at RAF Marham, stands next to Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson during his visit to visit RAF Marham in Norfolk where he made announcements about the RAF's fighter jets. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday January 10, 2019. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire - Credit: PA

The UK's F-35 Lightning stealth fighter jets are ready to be deployed on operations for the first time, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson during his visit to visit RAF Marham in Norfolk where he made ann

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson during his visit to visit RAF Marham in Norfolk where he made announcements about the RAF's fighter jets. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday January 10, 2019. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire - Credit: PA

The first of the multimillion-pound aircraft touched down at RAF Marham in Norfolk in June 2018.

Mr Williamson, speaking at the airbase on Thursday, said that nine F-35s were now ready to be deployed on operations, and that the RAF's Typhoon fleet has been upgraded with a new weapons system.

It comes as the last of the Tornados, in service since 1979, will be retired by the end of March.

Mr Williamson said: 'As we bid farewell to the RAF's first century, we are setting our sights on the next 100 years.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson during his visit to visit RAF Marham in Norfolk where he made ann

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson during his visit to visit RAF Marham in Norfolk where he made announcements about the RAF's fighter jets. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday January 10, 2019. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire - Credit: PA


You may also want to watch:


'Our nation is moving into a new era outside the EU, and our huge achievements in air capability make our commitment to a role on the world stage clear to both our allies and our enemies.

'The incredible F-35 jets are ready for operations, a transformed Typhoon has the power to dominate the skies into the 2040s and we continue to look even further into an ambitious future.

Most Read

'The RAF has long shown Britain at its great and global best, and today it lifts our nation to even greater heights.'

The Defence Secretary made the announcement in front of four aircraft, including the Tempest concept fighter jet model.

The aim is for a next-generation capability to have initial operational capability by 2035.

Around 150 UK personnel had been working with the F-35 jets in the US before the first batch of the supersonic aircraft came to the UK.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus