Cornwall

Field gun farewell for outgoing CO at RNAS Culdrose

Capt Graeme Mackay and the RNAS Culdrose field gun crew
Image caption The field gun crew towed Capt Mackay to his waiting aircraft

A new commanding officer has taken charge at the Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) at Culdrose in Cornwall.

Capt Toby Williamson replaced Capt Graeme Mackay following a traditional send-off from personnel on the base.

The outgoing officer was towed on a field gun carriage by its crew to an aircraft waiting to fly him to his next appointment.

Capt Mackay has been in charge at RNAS Culdrose for nearly two years, assuming command in October 2008.

Base personnel cheered and applauded as he was pulled along by the Culdrose field gun crew.

Capt Williamson, who joined the service in 1983, previously served as an equerry to the Queen.

Image caption Capt Williamson trained as a Sea King helicopter observer

During his naval career as a Sea King helicopter observer, he served in the Adriatic operating from the aircraft carrier HMS Invincible and later as flight commander of HMS Cumberland.

Capt Willamson has also worked in the Directorate of Joint Warfare at the Ministry of Defence, contributing to the strategic planning of operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Most recently, the married father-of-two has been teaching strategy and warfare to selected officers preparing for senior operational command.

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