RAF Patch Regt r 3 Wing HQ Royal Air Force Regiment 1982 La
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RAF Patch Regt r 3 Wing HQ Royal Air Force Regiment 1982 La

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  • Item #: 1P 01UK 1RAF 13REG 2OP 03WING 01
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RAF Patch 3 Wing Headquarters HQ Royal Air Force Regiment DZ 1982 Rapier Air Defence RAF Catterick Deployed Ascension Island Embroidered on twill merrowed edge 79mm by 79mm three and one eighth inches by three and one eghth inches.

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3 Wing RAF Regiment LAA was activated at RAF El Hamra Suez Canal Zone Egypt in October 1951 to command 26 27 and 36 Squadrons RAF Regt equipped with 40mm Bofors anti aircraft guns tasked with airfield light anti aircraft LAA defense and in addition providing elements for Internal Security IS operations. The Wing relocated to RAF Abu Sueir in November 1951 losing 27 Squadron RAF Regt with 26 and 37 Squadrons RAF Regt assigned.

3 Wing with 27 and 37 Squadrons deployed RAF Regt to RAF Nicosia Cyprus in December 1955 in response to the commencement of the EOKA campaign in Cyprus tasked with light anti aircraft and internal security IS airfield defense. The Wing and its Squadrons relocated to RAF Akrotiri Cyprus in early 1956. 3 Wing lost 37 Squadron RAF Regiment and was assigned 34 Squadron RAF Regt as replacement in December 1960. The Wing undertook peacekeeping operations during the outbreak of fighting between Greek and Turkish communities on Cyprus in December 1964 and January 1965. The Wing was provided additional assets from other RAF Regiment Squadrons as deployed detachments for peacekeeping and security. 3 Wing RAF Regt coordinated the reinforcement and defence of RAF assets in Cyprus during the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974.

3 Wing RAF Regiment relocated to RAF Catterick on 1 February 1975 to provide administrative control of unassigned UK based Squadrons and given command of 16 37 Field and 48 LLAD Tigercat Squadrons RAF Regiment. The Wing lost 16 and 37 Sqns RAF Regt retained 48 Sqn Tigercat RAF Regt and gained 2 Field Squadron Airborne and 58 and 66 Bofors LAA Squadrons RAF Regt in early 1976 and in addition to HQ the Wing incorporated Tigercat Flight and Bofors Servicing Section. 3 Wing RAF Regiment adopted its badge in 1976 described as in front of a pair of wings conjoined in bend sinister three Roman pila of the 1st Century AD bendwise. The three pila allude to the unit number and the three anti aircraft Squadrons within the Wing 48 58 and 66 LAA Squadrons whilst the wings represent the fourth Squadron of airborne infantry 2 Squadron RAF Regiment. The design was used for a DZ patch on combat clothing.

The Wing undertook the provision of regular deployments from 48 58 and 66 Squadrons RAF Regt to Belize South America to provide Bofors LAA and Tigercat low level air defence LLAD cover for RAF assets. 3 Wing disbanded 66 Squadron RAF Regiment on 16 July 1978. Tigercat Flight was disbanded and 48 Squadron relocated to RAF Lossiemouth reequipping with Rapier Field Standard A Optical Short Range Air Defence SHORAD missile systems in December 1978 and continued its deployed detachments to Belize. Bofors Servicing Section was disbanded and 58 Squadron the last Bofors Squadron was reequipped and rerolled as a Field Squadron for air base ground defence in February 1979. 2 Squadron Field RAF Regiment relocated to RAF Hullavington in August 1980 but remained under the command of 3 Wing.

3 Wing HQ RAF Regiment deployed to Ascension Island on 5 May 1982 as part of Operation Corporate in response to the invasion of the Falkland Islands by Argentina. The Wing was temporarily assigned C Flight 15 Squadron RAF Regiment to assume undertake the defence of Ascension Island which was as an important staging post during the Falkland War. The Wing returned to RAF Catterick in July 1982.

58 Squadron RAF Regiment converted to CVRT light armoured vehicles in October 1982 with a new war time role of the defence of RAF Germany Harrier Force operating bases in West Germany. 2 Squadron RAF Regiment was reassigned to 5 Wing RAF Regiment. 51 Squadron RAF Regt was assigned to 3 Wing on 13 October 1982 relocating from RAF Wittering to RAF Catterick and converting to CVRT light armoured vehicles to join 58 Squadron RAF Regt with a war time role of the defence of RAF Germany Harrier Force operating bases in West Germany. Rotational deployments to Northern Ireland continued until September 1987.

3 Wing deployed to Tabuk airbase in Saudi Arabia in October 1990 for Operation Granby in response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait building up the ground defences of bases the RAF were assigned. 51 Squadron RAF Regt deployed an initial detachment at Muharraq airfield Bahrain a detachment at Tabuk AB and at Dhahran AB Saudi Arabia to provide ground defence. 2 Squadron deployed to Cyprus for the defence of RAF Akrotiri returning to RAF Hullavington in December 1990. With only three days notice 58 Squadron deployed from RAF Catterick in January 1991 to Muharraq airfield Bahrain to allow 1 Squadron RAF Regiment to deploy to the front. 3 Wing RAF Regt returned to RAF Catterick in January 1991 just prior to the launch of Operation Desert Storm. 51 and 58 Squadrons returned in March 1991. 

With the end of the Cold War Options For Change included the reduction of RAF Regiment Squadrons and headquarters organisations with 58 Squadron disbanded on 31 March 1992 3 Wing itself disbanded on 1 October 1992 and 51 Squadron RAF Regiment disbanded on 31 March 1993.

The Wing was reactivated as 3 Survive To operate STO Headquarters at RAF Marham on 1 May 2002 to provide command and control of integrated ground defence and security forces at RAF airheads on deployed operations undertaken by RAF Marham and RAF Lossiemouth Tornado GR 4 fighter bomber Squadrons. The STO HQ provided specialist advice and coordination to the deployment air commander including rapid reconnaissance and deployment planning the organisation control and assignment of the required specialist security force elements from RAF Regiment Field Squadrons Royal Engineer Air Support Squadrons RAF Explosive Ordnance Disposal Teams RAF Police and Royal Auxillary Air Force personnel for each hostile or non hostile deployed location.

With increased deployments and home base responsibilities 3 Survive To operate STO Headquarters was redesignated 3 Force Protection Wing on 1 April 2004. 3 FP Wing relinquished responsibility for RAF Lossiemouth which was reassigned to the newly formed 5 Force Protection Wing and was assigned 15 Squadron RAF Regiment based at RAF Honington 2620 County of Norfolk Squadron RAuxAF Regiment and 6 RAF Police Squadron at RAF Marham.

3 Force Protection Wing adopted the 3 Wing badge but with the wings dexter and the pila points facing right and changed its motto to Latin Parare Et Protegrere Prepare and Protect. The design was used for a Tactical Recognition Flash TRF of a variety of sizes and subdued colours on combat clothing.

This patch dates from 1982.

 

 

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