His Majesty to Officially Hand Over Role of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps to The Prince of Wales

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HM King Charles III during the King's Birthday Parade, Trooping the Colour accompanied by HRH Prince of Wales, Duke of Edinburgh and the Princess Royal at Horse Guards Parade, London, June 17 2023.
HM King Charles III during the King's Birthday Parade, Trooping the Colour accompanied by HRH Prince of Wales, Duke of Edinburgh and the Princess Royal at Horse Guards Parade, London, June 17 2023.

HIS MAJESTY THE KING WILL HAND OVER THE ROLE OF COLONEL-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMY AIR CORPS TO HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE PRINCE OF WALES

Monday 13th May 2024

At the Army Aviation Centre in Middle Wallop, His Majesty The King will officially hand over the role of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales.

In August 2023, following His Majesty’s accession, the King was pleased to announce military appointments including that the Prince of Wales would become Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps. The role was previously held by His Majesty, as Prince of Wales, for 31 years.

On arrival, the King will be met by a guard of honour and Lieutenant General Sir Nicholas Borton, Colonel Commandant of the Army Air Corps, who will escort His Majesty to the Army Flying Museum. Located at Middle Wallop, the museum tells the story of British army flying from the early days of military ballooning to the modern Army Air Corps.

Within the museum, the King will meet veterans and their families. His Majesty will also be invited to unveil a plaque which commemorates the arrival of the first Apache AH Mk.1 to be installed in a UK museum. This Apache, now at the Army Flying Museum, was one of two that carried troops on their stub wings in the Battle of Jugroom Fort, Afghanistan, in 2007.

After departing the Army Flying Museum, His Majesty will walk across the airfield to the Middle Wallop Control Tower. Here, in front of an Apache, His Majesty will be met by the Prince of Wales to officially hand over the role of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps. Together, the King and the Prince of Wales will have an opportunity to meet serving aircrew in front of the Apache.

After His Majesty has departed, His Royal Highness will embark on his first engagement with the Army Air Corps as Colonel-in-Chief. The Prince will first receive a briefing on the Army Air Corps’ current work from the Colonel Commandant, Lieutenant General Sir Nicholas Borton. Following this, His Royal Highness will view training and operational aircraft used by the Army Air Corps and meet aircrew and the supporting ground staff. The Prince will then hear from soldiers across a range of roles within the regiment that are involved in supporting operations.

Finally, the Prince will depart the base by embarking on an Apache capability flight to deepen his understanding of the capabilities of the equipment and to learn more about the people that fly and support it.

The King, as Sovereign, is Head of the Armed Forces. His Majesty is a military veteran himself, having trained and served in both the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force.

The Prince of Wales has a strong affiliation with the Armed Forces, having served in the Army as a Platoon Commander in the Blues and Royals, before completing flying training in the Royal Air Force. His Royal Highness served as an RAF Search and Rescue pilot, spending three years at RAF Valley in Anglesey, Wales.

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