Flypasts to mark RAAF centenary in NSW and Canberra

written by Adam Thorn | March 25, 2021
Pilatus PC-21 v2
Credit: FLTLT Ash Kissock

Four PC-21s from RAAF Base Williamtown will fly over the ANZAC Memorial in Hyde Park, Sydney on Friday to celebrate the Air Force’s centenary.

The display will start at 10:53am and the trainers will then be followed by a selection of aircraft from HARS at 11:25am.

The flypasts will form part of a service led by the Air Force Association, who will induct a Memorial Book containing the names of all NSW RAAF personnel killed in the Second World War into the Royal United Services Institute library.

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To mark the 100 year anniversary itself, RAAF will fly 60 aircraft in waves over Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra from 10:30am on 31 March.

The flypast will culminate in a full display by the Roulettes aerobatic team and broadcast on the ABC.

To see the best viewing points, click this link.

Canberra activities to mark the big occasion will also include a Centenary Commemorative Ceremony at the Air Force Memorial on Anzac Parade on 30 March at 3pm. On both 30 and 31 March, there will be a Last Post Ceremony to honour the service and sacrifice of RAAF personnel starting at 4:45pm.

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The flyovers follow a string of display carried out by RAAF’s re-formed 100 Squadron over the last month.

Earlier this month, the unit flew aircraft including a Spitfire, Boomerang and Hudson at the Hunter Valley Airshow and also at the Temora Aviation Museum.

YouTuber Nigel Woolley caught the moment, below, WWII aircraft performed three passes in a seven ship formation at Hunter Valley. The aircraft were a CAC Boomerang, T-28 Trojan, Grumman Avenger, F4U Corsair, P-40 Kittyhawk, Supermarine Spitfire Mk VIII and Lockheed Hudson.

In February, Australian Aviation first reported how the RAAF would re-form the legendary No. 100 Squadron to fly aircraft from the current heritage fleet in Temora and Point Cook.

The unit, disbanded in 1946, was formed from surviving personnel from the British RAF’s No. 100 Torpedo Bomber Squadron who had escaped from Malaya.

The first RAAF Squadron to be equipped with Australian-built Beauforts, No. 100 Squadron was deployed to Queensland in May 1942, where it conducted further torpedo bomber training and anti-submarine patrols.

Notable deployments also included flying reconnaissance and bombing missions against coastal shipping in Milne Bay, PNG, and carrying out the RAAF’s first Beaufort operation resulting in the crucial sinking of a Japanese merchant vessel.

Later in February, it was then confirmed that the former executive officer of Headquarters Air Academy had been appointed as the new commanding officer of 100 Squadron.

Wing Commander Philip Beanland said he felt “extremely privileged” to take the role for the unit that will have the motto “then, now, always” and its own unique badge.

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