Royal Navy Historic Flight

The Royal Navy Historic Flight is a Royal Naval unit established in 1972 as a living memorial to all those who have served in the Royal Naval Air Service and Fleet Air Arm since the birth of naval aviation in 1909.

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The Flight operates historic naval aircraft, namely  Swordfish, Sea Fury and a Sea Hawk, attending air displays throughout the United Kingdom which also provides something of a 'shop window' on the Fleet Air Arm.

The current display aircraft collection consists of; Swordfish MkI W5856, Swordfish MkII LS326, Swordfish MkIII NF389, Sea Fury FB.11 VR930 and Sea Hawk FGA.6 WV908.

Find out more about who we are, what we do and who supports us here.

‘White knight’ needed to save Navy's last Sea Vixen after emergency landing

‘White knight’ needed to save Navy's last Sea Vixen after emergency landing


Royal Navy Historic Flight Latest News

Heroic Channel Dash aircrew remembered after 75 years

Heroic Channel Dash aircrew remembered after 75 years

Sea Fury to resume displays this summer

Sea Fury to resume displays this summer

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Unit History


Ocean convoy escorts, or support forces that took part in a successful action, Equator to the Arctic Circle between 3rd September 1939 and 8th May 1945

English Channel1939

Channel coastal convoy escorts, or other forces that took part in a successful action, in the English Channel,  between 3rd September 1939 and 8th May 1945

North Sea1939

Coastal convoy escorts, or other forces that took part in a successful action, in the North Sea, except coastal waters of Norway between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945

River Plate1939

Pursuit of the German Battleship Admiral Graf Spee in the South Atlantic on 13 December 1939


Forces taking part in the action off Calabria, Italy, 9 July 1940


Operation Dynamo, evacuation of British Expeditionary Force, and other Allied forces, from France, 26 May to 4 June 1940

East Indies1940

Forces taking part in successful attacks against enemy shipping or shore installations in the Indian Ocean, including the Red Sea, Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, June 1940 to August 1945


Forces involved on inshore operations between Port Said and Benghazi, and support of the army advance in the Western Desert between September 1940 and June 1942


Forces taking part in operations in the Mediterranean, east of a line Cape Spartel to Cape Trafalgar, not covered by other Battle Honours in the area, between June 1940, and May 1945


Forces taking part in the two battles of Narvik 10 and 13 April 1940, during the defence of Norway


Operations in coastal waters of Norway as far north as Tromso between 8 April and 8 June 1940, and successful actions in these waters at a later date to May 1945


Operation Collar, night action against Italian Battleships and Cruisers off Cape Spartivento, Sardinia, 27 November 1940


Forces taking part in Operation Judgement, night air strike on the Italian fleet and harbour at Taranto, 11 November 1940


Forces in support of the convoys running to and from North Russia within the Arctic Circle, except for the coastal waters of Norway, between September 1941 and May 1945


Pursuit and destruction of German Battleship Bismark in North North Atlantic 23 - 27 May 1941


Forces taking part in the defence and evacuation of Crete, 20 May - 1 June 1941


Forces taking part in the night action against the Italian fleet off Cape Matapan, Greece, 28-29 March 1941

Diego Suarez1942

Operation Ironclad, in support of landing forces in Madagascar 5 - 7 May 1942


Forces taking part in a successful action in Malacca Strait and waters adjacent to the Malay Peninsula and Sumatra between 7N - 9S and 95 - 118E, January 1942 to August 1945

Malta Convoys1942

Forces taking part in Operations Excess, Substance, Halberd, Harpoon, and Pedestal, and the resupply of aircraft and stores to Malta, between January 1941 and August 1942

North Africa1942

Forces taking part in Operation Torch, the support of landing forces and the army ashore in Algeria and Tunisia, between 8 November 1942 and 20 February 1943


Operation Avalanche, support of landing forces at Salerno on the Mainland of Italy, 9 September to 6 October 1943


Forces taking part in Operation HUSKY, support of landing forces in Sicily, between 10 July and 17 August 1943


Forces engaged with the enemy in all waters of the Aegean Archipeligo, between 35 - 42N and 22 - 30E, January - December 1944


Operations over Burma, October 1944 to April 1945, and May to August 1945


Operation Neptune, covering and support forces in the Channel, Dover to Ushant, for landings in France, 6 June to 3 July 1944


Operation Crimson, Task Force 62, air strikes and bombardment of harbour and oil installations in northern Sumatra, 25 July 1944

South France1944

Operation Dragoon, Task Force 88, support of landing forces on the south coast of France 15 - August 1944


Fleet Carriers and their Squadrons of Task Force 37 that took part in the final attacks on warships and mainland Japan, 16 July to 11 August 1945


Operation Iceberg, Task Force 57 attacks on airfields in the Sakashima Gunto in the East China Sea, during the assault on Okinawa, 26 March to 25 May 1945


Operation Meridian I and II, Task Force 63, air strikes on oil refineries at Pladjoe, on Sumatra, 24 and 28 January 1945


Ships and Squadrons involved in operations in support of United Nations forces ashore in Korea, between 2 July 1950 and 27 June 1953

Falkland Islands1982

Operation Corporate, the campaign to liberate the Falkland Islands, South Atlantic 35 - 60S, 2 April to 14 June 1982


Operation Granby, forces engaged in operations against Iraqi forces or in logistic duties in Central and Northern Gulf, west of 51E, 17 January to 28 February 1991

Al Faw2003

Operation TELIC, forces in contact with the enemy in operations within the sea and land territories of, or the airspace above, Iraq and Kuwait, 19 March to 30 April 2003

Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers Future

An island nation needs a powerful navy. A simple fact, often forgotten. Go behind the scenes of the new aircraft carrier and discover its true scale and ambition.

Read about the new carrier

Commanding officer Chris Gotke

Chris Gotke

Rank: Lieutenant Commander

Chris joined the Royal Navy in 1992 after a short time in industry.

Selected for fast jets, Chris joined 800 NAS in HMS Invincible, after completing Sea Harrier training in 1998, seeing service in Kosovo and Iraq. Various roles and appointments followed in 801 NAS, 800 NAS, QinetiQ Boscombe Down

He was appointed Commanding Officer of the RNHF in 2013, a full time position managing and flying for the organisation he has supported voluntarily for almost 10 years.

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RNAS Yeovilton

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The Sea Hawk flying with the Historic Flight is absolutely unique - no others in flying condition exist in the world


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Sea Fury

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Sea Hawk

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About us

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The Team

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Sea Fury

Sea Hawk

Display Season 2016

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