On the 1st April 1918, the Royal Air Force was formed, it was the world’s first independent air force, this year it celebrates it’s centenary.
The Royal Mint have joined forces with the RAF to mark, this special milestone, and there are five £2 coins to commemorate the anniversary.
The forth coin in the series, and it depicts the Lightning II.
The other four coins are the RAF Badge, Spitfire, Sea King and Vuclan.
The Vulcan and Sea King is due for release onthe 7th May and 13th August respectively.
At the outbreak of World War One in 1914, few people believed, that aircraft would play a major roll in the conflict. Hot -air balloons had been used previously for almost 100 years for reconnaissance and observation, it was thought that planes would serve a similar purpose. The Royal Flying Corps, the aviation branch of the British Army, began life as an ‘eye in the air’ reporting on enemy positions and providing a tactical advantage.
Sadly as the war progressed into the bloodiest conflict the world had ever seen, the race for superior air power began, shaping the history of human flight.
Together with the Royal Naval Air Service, the Royal Flying Corps grew into a force of a few hundred aeroplanes in 1914 into a huge, independent air arm of thousands of combat and support aircraft. Pilots observers and crew risked their lives testing the new technology to it’s limits.
Deployed above battlegrounds, often beyond the call of duty, these brave men suffered the effects of altitude and freezing temperatures, they also faced great personal danger from enemy guns, and later combat fighters. Seeing film footage of the ‘dogfights’, reminds us all of the skill and courage of these brave men.
The Royal Flying Corps and Naval flying service, went on to become in 1918, HM Royal Air Force.
Today and every day we should remember the brave souls who in this terrible conflict, made the ultimate sacrifice, be it on land, air or sea. Comes complete in original Mint packaging