Northern ‘Q’: The History of Royal Air Force, Leuchars takes its title from the long standing primary role as one of the oldest airfields in the UK. Leuchars began its links with military aviation as far back as 1911 with the arrival of the Royal Engineers who established a balloon squadron for reconnaissance training. Following the outbreak of war in 1939, the station was identified as an ideal location to launch maritime operations under Coastal Command. By the end of the war, Leuchars, like so many other airfields, was under the threat of redundancy as many airfields were rendered surplus to requirements. The developing international situation placed a shift in defence with the Cold War and Leuchars was once more deemed to be in an ideal and vital position. From 1950, this corner of north-east Fife has been on permanent guard with every type of operational interceptor in RAF service. Now politics from austerity to Scottish independence, rather than sound judgement, is setting the agenda as the RAF leave for Lossiemouth in Moray.
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