HMS Eagle leaves Plymouth 1964. Plymouth Hoe on the Port Side.
Correlation 899 Squadron to HMS Eagle 1964 to 1966. 5th Commission.
After an extensive refit lasting 5 years in Devonport Dockyard under Captain L. D. Empson, HMS Eagle proudly emerged for her 5th Commission as the largest warship of the Royal Navy under the command of Captain J.C.Y. Roxburgh DSO. DSC. RN., on 14th June 1964
Extensive changes had been made from her the continuous service between 1952 and 1959.
Mission X. 899 Sqn Sea Vixens on deck fully ready..
Flight Deck size increased, Powerful steam catapults, 3D (Type 984) radar, 184 Sonar. Ships wheel replaced with a steering joystick. The machinery control room (MCR) could control all Boiler Rooms (4) and Engine Rooms (4). Accommodation improved. Every man had a bunk and air conditioning throughout
July, August and September spent in coastal waters for work ups and ORI., the airgroup embarking to and from their parent air stations. 899 was the resident Sea Vixen Mk2 squadron for HMS Eagle under the command of Cdr. Mathews RN., having spent 1962 to 1964 at RNAS Yeovilton as the Headquarters squadron
"Aircrew Man Aircraft"
The ship visited Brest 1st to 3rd October 1964 and Gibraltar 15th to 22nd October 1964, then returned to Devonport.
1st December 1964 sailed from Plymouth for the Far East Station. Embarked the airgroup including 899 Sqn
Transit of Mediterranean and through the Suez canal
18th December 1964 first flyex off Aden.
24th December 1964 to 4th January 1965 at Mombasa
13th to 27th January 1965 at Singapore. 899 Sqn disembark to RAF Tengah. Continuation flying and Adex of Singapore
8th to 12th February at Subic bay, Philippines
23rd February to 11th March 1965 at Hong Kong
18th to 25th March major exercise with 3 UK carriers. Ex Fotex 1965
19th March 1965 at Langkawi, West Malaysia
27th March 1965 ex Showpiece and to Tioman Island off East Malaysia
6th to 20th April 1965 at Singapore. 899 Sqn disembark to RAF Changi for continuation flying and Adex of Singapore
30th April to 2nd May 1965 at Aden
Transit Suez canal
7th to 10th May 1965 at Beirut
15th to 19th May 1965 at Malta
24th May 1965 arrive at Devonport.
One third changeover of personel within 899 Sqn at RNAS Yeovilton. New CO. Lt. Cdr. “Rip” Kirby RN. Squadron Compliment increases to 14 aircraft
24th August 1965 sail from Plymouth for the Far East Station and embark Squadrons including 899 Sqn
8th September 1965. Sea Vixen lost. Both crewmen killed. ID 16.
13th to 23rd September at Malta
25th to 30th September fast passage to Aden
13th to 23rd October 1965 at Mombasa
27th October to 1st November 1965 Flyex Aden
12th to 20th November Singapore
20th to 27th November fast passage to X. Twelve fully armed and ready Sea Vixens of 899 Sqn ranged on deck to fly off at a moments notice.
27th November to 1st December Operation X. Area X proved to be off Zambia. RN stepped down from duty when the RAF sent a Squadron of Javelins to Zambia instead of 899 Sqn standing by. (Rhodesia Crisis)
7th to 18th December flyex off Aden
23rd December to 10th January 1966 at Mombasa
16th to 22nd January flyex off Aden
22nd January to 26th January 1966 at Aden
26th January to 2nd February flyex of Aden
11th to 28th February at Singapore
28th February to 15th March 1966 passage to Beira
15th to 31st April Beira Patrol relieving HMS Ark Royal
Beira Patrol Statistics: 71 days and 1007 flying sorties. 20,000 square miles surveyed daily
10th to 31st May 1966 at Singapore
4th to 11th June 1966 at Hong Kong
8th July 1966. Sea Vixen Lost. Both crewmen killed. Accident ID 21.
August 1966 Homeward Bound. via the Mediterranean and Gibraltar to Deveonport