Some 63 Members of the Naval Eight / 208 Squadron Association gathered at the Royal Air Force Club on Saturday 22 October 2016 to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the formation of Naval Eight Squadron at Le Vert Gallant near Amiens on 26 October 2016. Festivities began in the Churchill Bar at 6:00pm, and it was soon reverberating to the anecdotes from all of the Chapters, from Spitfire / Hurricane / Lysander, through Meteor, Hunter and Buccaneer, to the Hawk.
Amongst many old friends were Freddie Nicoll, who had flown Hurricanes at El Alamein and John Pascoe-Watson, whose book ‘Laughter-Silvered Wings’ describes his post-War exploits on 208 Squadron in the Middle-East, including the infamous attack by the Israelis in 1949. Douggie Marr of the Hunter Chapter, whose original history of 208 Squadron forms the basis of this Website’s History Section, joined the avid discussion, along with Graham Pitchfork, whose recently-published book ‘Forever Vigilant’ is now the definitive history of our famous Squadron.
As promised by the Vice-Chairman of the RAF Club, the framed photograph of XX350 in formation with a Bristol Fighter, which had been signed by all final members of 208 Squadron, and which had been presented to the Club on the occasion of the Laying-Up of the Squadron Standard on 22 May 2016, was on display. Former Squadron Commanders present were Graham Pitchfork (Buccaneer 1979-81); Ben Laite (Buccaneer 1981-84); Brian ‘Boots’ Mahaffey (Buccaneer 1987-89); Nigel Huckins (Buccaneer 1992-94); and Neil Meadows (Hawk 2001-03).