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Defence News 07/06/2018
First UK F-35Bs arrive in country

The Royal Air Force (RAF’s) 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron arrived in the UK with the first of its Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters (JSF) on 6 June.

Four of the squadron’s short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) jets touched down at their future homebase of RAF Marham having made the 6,500 km from Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Beaufort in South Carolina, accompanied by Airbus Voyager tankers.

While this is not the first time that F-35s have visited the UK (three UK and US Marine Corps F-35Bs and US Air Force F-35A aircraft crossed the Atlantic for the Royal International Air Tattoo and Farnborough International Airshow in 2014), it marks the permanent basing of the aircraft in the country, as well as the stand-up of F-35B operations at RAF Marham.

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