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A very warm welcome to the RAF Valley Website and for those of you who are posted here may I wish you a most enjoyable tour at this very busy Station in the beautiful landscape of Anglesey and the Snowdonia National Park. If you are a visitor to our site, please feel free to look around and learn a little of what we do and how we fit into our Community. This website should provide you with an opportunity to understand the part that this Station plays in the defence of our country and gives an insight into the daily lives of our service personnel, civilian staff, station contractors and their dependants.

The aim of the Station is straightforward and clear; to train future fast jet combat pilots. The majority of those pilots are RAF with a smaller portion being RN pilots destined for Joint Force Harrier. In the fulfilment of our task, we are by far the busiest station in the Royal Air Force. Under the command of Personnel and Training Command, there are more sorties flown from RAF Valley that the entire Tornado GR4 and Jaguar Force put together. The majority of those sorties stem from Hawk TMk1 operations by 19(R) and 208(R). However, both C Flt of 22 Sqn (operating the Sea King in the Search and Rescue role) and Search and Rescue Training Unit (operating the Griffin) make a significant contribution to the life of the station.

In addition to playing a major role in enabling the Royal Air Force fulfil its contribution to the defence mission, the Station plays extremely important part in the North Wales Community. I believe that the bond has been strengthened since the contractorisation of the Engineering and Support Services at the Station. Now, the Station is a significant employer in the locality providing technical and highly skilled employment opportunities for many local people. As a result, I consider that this has strengthened the genuine bond of friendship between the Royal Air Force and the people of North Wales. This bond is highlighted by our being granted the Freedom of Anglesey, Bangor and Llandudno; a privilege that is exercised each year with a parade in each of the town centre. In 1993 the Station was given a unique honour when His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales became Honorary Air Commodore of Royal Air Force Valley.

So hopefully that has given you an indication of the Station task, now a few words on the environment. At first thought you may think that RAF Valley is a remote location and may well have heard numerous tales or rumours to that effect. Let me put your mind at rest. The Island of Anglesey is a place of breathtaking beauty and has much to offer. It is a watersports paradise with very active clubs in water-skiing, windsurfing, surfing, sailing, canoeing, angling and sub-aqua to name but a few. The Snowdonia National Park is only 20 miles away and the Station has a wide selection of equipment and keen and energetic PEd staff who will show you how to use it! The island can offer a number of golf courses and, indeed, we have our own 9-hole course on the station - just be careful getting the woods out of the bag when the aircraft are taxying past! There are also 2 horse riding centres nearby. Should you wish to spend your leisure time sightseeing, Chester and Dublin are about 90 minutes away and Beaumaris, Bangor and Caernarfon are about 30 minutes. There are spectacular walks on the island and Cymyran Beach, which is easily accessible through a gate next to the Station Barbeque area, borders the airfield with its beautiful golden sand and rocky shoreline. During the summer the sun shines brightly and Valley can be a 'Welsh Riviera'. The winters can be wet and are invariably windy, but no more so than many other less beautiful locations. I hope you will not only have the opportunity to take advantage of all of these facilities, but also be involved in their running too! Finally, for those of you with families, the station is blessed with outstanding childcare and education opportunities/arrangements that will cater with family needs from full time nursery care through to A level education.

Hence, if you have any doubts at all about life at RAF Valley, don't. Many people arrive here sceptical and end up, in a short time, converted and do not wish to leave here at the end of their tour; many do not, staying here for extensions or second tours. May I again welcome you aboard and wish you every success and happiness during your time here.

Tony Barmby
Group Captain
Station Commander
RAF Valley


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Station Commander
- Group Captain Barmby

OC 19 Squadron
- Wg Cdr Bentley

OC 208 Squadron
- Wg Cdr Kelly 

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