Farewell to The Fin Typhoon GR4 with GR Retirement FINale FACS Patch Set Mounted Presentation
Squadron Prints Lithograph No. 1503 – ZG752, Tornado GR4, “Farewell to the Fin”
To commemorate the retirement of the Tornado GR4 from Royal Air Force service, one of the last remaining RAF examples of the type, ZG752, has been specially painted in the original wrap-around camouflage scheme of green and grey which all the Tornado GR1/1As were originally delivered in during the 1980s. Based at the last remaining operational station, RAF Marham, ZG752 is inscribed with the dates 1982 – 2019 on the tail – those being the years between which the Tornado GR1/1A and subsequently the GR4 were in operational service with RAF squadrons. The first operational unit was no. IX(B) Squadron which received its first aircraft in January 1982. All operational Tornado GR squadrons are represented on the spine of the aircraft, as well as the training and test units also to have operated the type over the years. These are the Tornado Tri-National Training Establishment (TTTE) which was the first RAF unit to receive the type (1980-1999), the Tornado Weapons Conversion Unit (TWCU) and its shadow unit, no. 45(R) Squadron (1981-1992), no. II(AC) Squadron the first of the reconnaissance squadrons to operate the Tornado GR1A variant (1989-2015), no. IX(B) Squadron - the first operational RAF Tornado GR1 squadron (1982-2019), no. 12 Squadron – the first operator of the GR1B maritime strike variant (1993-2018), no. XIII Squadron – the second of the squadrons to fly the GR1A (1989-2011), no. 14 Squadron (1985-2011), no. XV Squadron (1983-2017), no. 16 Squadron (1984-1991), no. 17 Squadron (1985-1999), no. 20 Squadron (1984-1992), no. 27 Squadron (1983-1993), no. 31 Squadron (1984-2019), no. 617 Squadron (1983-2014) and the Strike Attack Operational Evaluation Unit (SAOEU), subsequently the Fast Jet & Weapons Operational Evaluation Unit (FJWOEU) (1983-2006) which eventually took on the 41(R) Squadron number plate, latterly known as no. 41 Test & Evaluation Squadron (2006-2018).