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RAF Operation Black Buck 1

Eight refuellings of Vulcan bomber XM607 over the South Atlantic Ocean
from Ascension Island to Port Stanley and back.

May Day / 1982

Eleven Victor tankers and a Nimrod participated in this complex operation.
In addition to the 8 'refreshments' of the Vulcan I guess there were
many Victor-to-Victor fuel transfers.



The payload of 21 x 1000lb bombs affected the Vulcan's fuel consumption.
i.e. 7 refills outward; and only 1 refill on the home run.

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This Black Buck story caught my eye 37 years after the Falkland Islands were invaded.
 
I was a draughtsman and design engineer at BAe (A.V.Roe) Woodford for about 30 years
(including 1982) and worked on all of the aircraft types mentioned above.

Victor XH672 (mentioned in the sketch) features greatly in my memories.
1993-September-30 she did a series of fly-pasts as a farewell tour of the UK.
BAe Woodford, Cheshire was on the list. I was there. It was the day I retired !
Later, 1993-Nov-30-1250 GMT, XH672 (Maid Marian) was directed  to
 RAF Shawbury where she was broken up with some parts going to
the Aerospace Museum at RAF Cosford.

This romancing began for me when as a school-boy in the 1950s
I purchased many issues of Air Pictorial from our newsagent.
 

My thanks to Wikipedia and their contributors for much of the above data.
The sketch plan is my own aide-memoire.

Link to Wikipedia/Operation Black Buck


Footnote and group photograph

Photo of 5 airmen / beside Vulcan XM607

This photo & script were found on the internet and might be Crown copyright.
  
The Vulcan crew : In the centre is
captain Flt Lt Martin Withers (pilot, 36);  
flanked by 
Flt Lt Bob Wright (radar plotter); Flying Officer Peter Taylor (co-pilot);
Flt Lt Gordon Graham (navigator); 
Flt Lt Hugh Prior (air electronics officer)
(Please help me to place the last four names in left-to-right order.)

And out of the frame, Flt Lt R J Russell (air-to-air refuelling instructor)
his station would have been the supernumerary seat between the pilots.

 
Squadron Leader Tuxford (mentioned above although not shown) was actually 
captain of XL189 one of the one of the eleven Victor tankers.
 

So let's see where this leads to. If necessary, please offer me corrections.

Latest amendment 06 Aug 2019




© 2019 Geoffrey Royle