Gallery: Prince Harry visits Suffolk airbase
PRINCE Harry today officially opened a new �5m mess at a Suffolk airbase on a visit to the region.
Wearing Army Air Corps blue fatigues, the 25-year-old Prince arrived at RAF Honington in a blue Jaguar and was greeted by Station Commander Squadron Leader Nick Bray.
After a briefing and a demonstration of RAF Regiment training the Prince then met service personnel and spouses and partners of soldiers currently deployed in Afghanistan where Harry himself saw active duty.
Squadron Leader Bray said: “It was an exciting visit for everybody, a huge shot in the arm for morale. “We were very interested to meet him and benefited immensely from his enthusiasm and good humour.”
The new mess named Meiktila Mess after a wartime battle in Burma was built to offer a new dining experience to soldiers and airmen station at Honington and accommodates 600 diners.
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RAF Honington, near Bury St Edmunds, has been the home of the Royal Air Force Regiment since 1994, after it moved from Catterick, near Richmond, in Yorkshire.
It is home to 1, 2 and 15 Squadrons RAF Regiment, the Joint Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Regiment, which consists of the 1st Battalion Royal Tank Regiment and 27 Squadron RAF Regiment.
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Two Squadron are currently deployed at Kandahar Air Base to protect the base from enemy insurgents. They are due back on July 18 after a six-month tour of duty.
First Squadron are part way through their detachment at Camp Bastion and Kabul having departed in April.
Recently Cpl Dave Hayden, formerly of 1 Sqn RAF Regiment, became the first airman to be awarded the Military Cross for bravery during a skirmish at Al Waki in Iraq.
Prince Harry was appointed Honorary Air Commander of Royal Air Force Honington in October 2008 by his grandmother in recognition of the strong links between the Royal Air Force and the Royal Family.
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