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Tornado Farewell – GR.4 Gate Guard for Honington

Photo: GR.4 ZG752 in its special camouflage scheme.

 

Tornado GR.4 ZG752 will go to RAF Honington, to be displayed as a gate guard, Britain at War magazine can reveal.

Speaking at a media event at RAF Marham today, the RAF also announced its intention to preserve up to 12 GR.4s from the current fleet.

Three specially-painted GR.4s flew at the event, ZG752 now sports the iconic camouflage scheme while two other aircraft carried the markings of 31 Squadron RAF, which currently operates the GR.4 – and 9 Squadron – the first operational Tornado squadron – respectively.

Tornado ZD716 in its special 31 Sqn markings.

Entering service in 1979, the Tornado has been operated by the RAF for 40 years in interceptor, anti-ship and strike roles. The veteran fighter-bomber has been the RAF’s primary aircraft of choice for ground-attack missions since the First Gulf War, when the type first saw combat.

The GR.4 iteration first saw action in the 2003 Iraq War, and going forward its capabilities will be adopted by the multi-role Typhoon FGR.4.

Following its retirement later this year, ZG752 will be moved by road to RAF Honington in Suffolk, the home of the RAF’s force protection assets.

A side view of ZG752, which will become a gate guard.

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