The early naming of 809 alongside the RAF’s 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron is a very visible demonstration of a joint ambition, spirit of collaboration and shared equity in the Joint Lightning Force.

Admiral Sir George Zambellas

It was last re-formed to support operations in the Falklands, flying off the decks of HMS Hermes and HMS Invincible. 809 also flew the Navy’s last Buccaneer, a low level strike bomber flown in the 1960s and 1970s.

First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas said:

“I am delighted to announce that the name of the second Lightning II squadron, when it forms, will be 809 Naval Air Squadron. This squadron number is chosen to link with and reflect the proud and distinguished history of embarked carrier strike, from the Second World War to the Falklands.

“The early naming of 809 alongside the RAF’s 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron is a very visible demonstration of a joint ambition, spirit of collaboration and shared equity in the Joint Lightning Force.”

When not at sea as part of the UK’s carrier strike force, 809 will be based at RAF Marham in Norfolk. The joint nature of the Squadrons means Naval personnel will serve with The Dambusters and their Air Force counterparts will do likewise on 809 NAS.