This Section is for anyone who have worked on the Jet Provost aircraft so they can share their memories and pictures with everyone. If you would like to add your memories or write a plea for help in finding lost RAF personel please email me 

from the contacts section below




My days at RAF Syerston.  Geoff Jacobs. P1941173.


Posted into RAF Syerston, Nottinghamshire, in June 1966 from RAF Gan; just in time to see the England football team beat Germany in the final, what a fantastic homecoming.


As a Junior Tech Propulsion Fitter, I was posted onto First Line with the Jet Provost Mk.3. for training pilots from many countries, with the Yanks being most demanding about getting the ‘bugs off the windshield’. “Is it true, we share the same language?”


Days comprised getting the aircraft out of the hanger and in line, on the pan. Then the instructors appeared with the students, we strapped them in and saw them off.

Thirty minutes or so and back they came, navigating along the River Trent, weather permitting. Marshall the J.P. back on line, see both pilots out, having made the ‘bang seats’ safe and then carry out  turn-round servicing and replenishing, with the other tradesmen. Mainly riggers, (airframes) plumbers (armourers) and sparks (electricians).  Rarely did we need the fairies for radio and comms.


From First to Second Line for Minor and Major servicing, in the hangers. I teamed with David Shone  and Pauline Fenner-Smith, two SAC’s and we made a great team, setting record times for servicing.


Next, the aircraft was towed to the ground-run pan where I would test the engine. When satisfactory back into the Hanger, sign Form 700 and wait for the next available UTP (Unit Test Pilot) to take the aircraft for air test.

On many occasions, I flew with the UTP. Very exciting as he put the aircraft through its paces. Especially when he would stop-cock, to make certain the engine would relight through the glow-plug,  fitted in the exhaust. Always a heart-stopping few seconds. When you’re up there, it focuses the mind to make certain the aircraft is very safe and you know the other tradesmen are just as diligent. (RAF training, second to none).


That led to me being invited to fly with the ‘Vipers’ display team, which I did for two summers. Weather permitting we would fly to the airfield, approach in formation and land. We three ground crew would leave the aircraft, make the number two seat safe, do a quick visual check then the three aircraft would take off,  for their display.


Display over, they land, we replenish, uncover number 2 seat, climb back in and off we went in formation back to RAF Syerston.  Fantastic experience, wouldn’t have missed it for the world. Had one emergency, when the landing gear would not lock down. 3 greens – 3 reds – 3 greens – 3 reds.

During my time at RAF Syerston, we lost two trainee pilots who crashed away from camp. One was buried in a local church, the other where his parents lived. That drives home the need for certainty.


My time at Syerston was made even more memorable when I was invited to transfer to The Queens Flight, which I declined. Then asked if I would consider applying to the selection Board for officer training. I seriously regret not pursuing that opportunity. Finally, I was awarded accelerated promotion to Corporal Technician after being a J.T. for only eighteen months.

My two Hanger flight officers were PO Pete Norris and FO Richard Jones. The aircraft, the people, the camp, the experiences, without doubt, my best ever posting.


RAF Church Fenton.


I am searching for Robert (Rab) Findlay, who was posted to Church Fenton in January 1964.

He was an Air Wireless Mechanic, working as a member of the ground crew, servicing Jet Provosts at 7 FTS.

I served with Rab in 1962 / 63 but have since lost contact with him.

I have settled in Belgium and would appreciate any help regarding his present whereabouts, as well as any details of his subsequent postings or family points of contact, please.


Peter Swaine


                              Sqn Ldr Dickie Lees

Sqn Ldr Dickie Lees flew the Jet Provost as an instructor and as an examiner on CFS Exam Wing Basic Squadron. He completed the CFS course at Little Rissington in 1960, flying the Piston Provost and Jet Provost 3.  He was then posted to RAF College Cranwell in December 1960 and started instructing on the first Cranwell Jet Provost course, operating from Barkston Heath and Cranwell.  At the end of January 1962 he was posted to 3 FTS Leeming  as an A2 instructor (along with others) to provide a core of experience at the newly formed FTS.  At the end of 1962 he was posted to a P staff job at Shinfield Park, Flying Training Command HQ.  After this ground tour he flew Canberras in Germany (RAF Wildenrath), then 231 OCU Bassingbourn. After another ground tour at Henlow he returned to 231OCU at Cottesmore. In January 1974 he was promoted to Sqn Ldr and posted to No 1 FTS at Linton on Ouse to command 3Sqn and later Standards Sqn. Having obtained his A1 Instructor category he was then posted to CFS Exam Wing at Cranwell in February 1977 to command Basic Sqn, transferring to Leeming in November 1977. In May 1980 another ground tour at Cranwell and then onto the new Tornado simulators at Cottesmore.  In November 1985 he returned to the Jet Provost (now specialist aircrew) and was posted to 3 Sqn at RAF College Cranwell.  In March 1988 he returned to Cottesmore to finish his air force career in October 1993, having served over 42 years.

It was April 1976 and I was OC Standards Sqn at No 1 FTS Linton-on-Ouse.  A suggestion had been made, I do not know from whom, that basic training aircraft should be able to do a land away sortie to RAF Germany.  As OC Stds I was given the job of checking the feasability of a JP 5A flying direct from Linton-on-Ouse to RAF Wildenrath. Command had ruled that the shortest oversea route should be taken, and that immersion suits were to be worn.  My first job was to visit the Met man to check normal prevailing winds at I believe around 25,000ft. A direct flight from Linton-on-Ouse to overhead Manston and then to Wildenrath would be feasible if the winds were favourable.  If not we could land at Manston to refuel. Immersion suits had arrived and I then discovered that our Station Commander, Gp Capt Bannard, was to fly with me, taking the left hand seat.  As we got into the cockpit we realised that two average size pilots in immersion suits made the cockpit suddenly seem smaller and more "intimate".

On Friday 23 April 1976 we left for Wildenrath in good weather and had an uneventful sortie.  Obviously on route regular fuel consumption checks were made and the winds were favourable so overhead Manston we headed for Germany and had no problems in reaching our destination.  Gp Capt Bannard had been flying the aircraft and I had been responsible for the navigation.  We let down to make a visual arrival with a "run and break", as we were half way over the airfield Gp Capt Bannard realised it was a RIGHT-HAND CIRCUIT so what does a senior officer do, pass control to his deputy !!  So cramped in an immersion suit I was given control to fly a right hand break and landing - luckily I did not disgrace myself and we landed safely. The return flight on Monday 26 April 1976 was done in two flights as we had to clear customs at Manston.  Overall it had been an interesting exercise but I am not sure how often it was repeated by aircraft from a basic FTS. The moral from the tale is "be prepared" particularly when flying with a senior officer.


Photographic Memories of David Smith

XP547 Jet Provost Jet Provost T4 displayed at Farnborough during 04-10/09/1961

One of two Jet Provost T.4's (XP666 and XP667)

on display at Farnborough during 09/1962

Nice tight Five Ship formation at Farnborough Airshow during 09/1962

     XP620/43 Jet Provost T4 at a very wet Lossiemouth Airshow on 24/06/1965

One of four 6 FTS Jet Provost T4 from 6 FTS Acklington flying very low

at Wolverhampton Air Show on 20/06/1965. The DH-82A Tiger Moth

is G-ACDC which is still flying today

A low fly past from 3 Jet Provosts from 6 FTS Acklington at Wolverhampton Air

Show on 20/06/1965. Note the airfield which now a housing estate is a few

miles from where this web site was built

Four Jet Provost T.4's in formation at Arbroath Air Show 1967


The Formation as shown in the photograph:

XP672       XP678



20 Jet Provost T.3's in formation over the

Farnborough Air Show during 16-22/09/1968

Jet Provosts known to have been at the Air Show this year were: XP548, XP555, XP556, XP557, XP558, XP559, XP560, XP564, XP565, XP566, XP567, XP568, XP583, XP584, XP585, XP586, XP667, XP671, XR656, XR673, XR681, XS178, and XS181

Four Jet Provost T.4's from the "Linton Gin" Display Team undertaking

a petal break from diamond manouevre at an unknown location in 1969

XP679/50 Jet Provost T.4 (inverted) and XR667/51 from

3 FTS displaying at Upper Heyford Air Show during 1970