Extraordinary Editions

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THE TORNADO EDITION

Sir Stephen Hillier, Air Chief Marshal, Chief of the Air Staff KCB CBE DFC ADC

After gaining a Flying Scholarship with the Air Training Corps, Air Chief Marshal Hillier started flying jet aircraft in the RAF at the age of 18 and by the age of 20 was a Qualified Flying Instructor on his first-tour on the Jet Provost.  He chose then to convert to the Tornado GR1 and flew from bases in Germany and the UK, latterly as the Tornado GR1 Air Display Pilot, before deploying to the Persian Gulf and flying 16 missions in the 1991 Gulf War.  He subsequently deployed on No Fly Zone enforcement operations over Iraq on a further seven occasions over the following 12 years, and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross whilst commanding Number II (Army Co-operation) Squadron on operations in 1999.  He commanded RAF Lossiemouth in 2002-03 and returned there in 2016 to re-qualify as a Tornado GR4 captain after a 13 year absence.  He remains qualified on Tornado, but as Chief of the Air Staff he also has the opportunity to fly all of the RAF’s aircraft and especially enjoys broadening his experience of the RAF’s wide range of air mobility, ISTAR, rotary-wing and training aircraft.

 

 

 

 

Air Chief Marshal Sir Simon Bryant KCB CBE

Simon Bryant was commissioned as a University Cadet in 1974. Trained as a fast jet navigator, he completed two tours on the F-4 Phantom in the Air Defence role before an exchange tour with the US Navy, instructing on the F-14 Tomcat. Promoted to squadron leader in 1985, Bryant then flew the Tornado F3 as a squadron executive at RAF Leeming.

Bryant served as a Senior Operations Officer at the Combined Air Operations Centre at Vicenza in 1996, before being appointed Commanding Officer of 43(F) Squadron at RAF Leuchars. Promoted to Group Captain in 1999, Bryant served as the Personal Staff Officer to the Deputy Supreme Commander at SHAPE before being appointed Commander of British Forces in Oman for which he was subsequently awarded a Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service and promoted to be Air Officer Scotland and Commanding Officer RAF Leuchars.

After a further tour in the Middle East as Director of the Combined Air Operations Centre at Al Udeid in Qatar he returned to the UK as Head of Joint Capability at the Ministry of Defence. Tours as Air Secretary and Deputy Commander-in-Chief Personnel (and Air Member for Personnel) followed before his appointment as Commander-in-Chief in 2010.

 

 

 

 

Air Chief Marshal Sir Glenn Torpy GCB CBE DSO BSc(Eng) FRAeS FCGI

Air Chief Marshal Sir Glenn Torpy joined the RAF in 1974 after achieving a First in Aeronautical Engineering at Imperial College, London.  He completed two tours flying the Jaguar in the reconnaissance and attack roles, and a tour as a Qualified Weapons Instructor on the Hawk, before commanding No 13 Squadron, a Tornado GR1A tactical reconnaissance squadron.  During his time on No 13 Squadron he saw active service in the First Gulf War, for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order.  In 1994 he assumed command of RAF Bruggen in Germany, which at the time was the largest Tornado base in the RAF.  He subsequently completed a number of staff appointments in the MOD and PJHQ, before becoming Chief of the Air Staff in 2006.  During his flying career Sir Glenn amassed some 4300 hours of fast-jet flying, predominately on Jaguar, Hawk and Tornado, but also on Typhoon.