The Royal Air Force: 90 Years On (Commemorative magazine)
This year sees the ninetieth anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force. It was founded during the First World War by the amalgamation of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service, and is the world's oldest air force which became independent of army or naval
control. This magazine charts the development of aviation through they eyes of the RAF. It also looks at the evolution of aviation as a strategic weapon;
developing from one initially of defence, to being more offensive, a concept fashioned by Hugh Trenchard, who played a key role in the early development of the RAF. Trenchard, supported by Churchill, fought to keep resources diverted to the RAF allowing it to develop and be better prepared for WW2, whilst there were those who wanted to cut all resources as they felt that war was unlikely.
The last ninety years have seen some incredible technological developments and a vast array of aircraft, some of which have been hugely successful, whilst others have been more a danger to their pilots than the enemy. Certainly the development of the jet engines, radar and some of the modern missile systems have played a huge role in determining the make up, shape
and role of the RAF over its ninety years.
This magazine looks at the different aircraft, their respective technologies, pilots and crew that flew, and the actions in which they served the RAF.
1st April 1918
Founded during the First World War by the amalgamation of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service, the RAF is the world's oldest air force which became independent of army or naval control. The RAF operates over 850 aircraft and, as of 31 March 2008, has a projected trained strength of 41,440 regular personnel.