Army air Corps Squadron 657
657 Squadron, a sub unit of 9 Regiment of the Army Air Corps, are based at RAF Odiham and form part of the Joint Special Forces Aviation Wing (JSFAW) along with 7 Squadron RAF.
657 Sqn developed their special forces support role in the late nineties, culminating in its move to Odiham from Dishforth Airfield. AAC 657 Sqn operate Lynx AH.7, and more recently, MK9a helicopters in support of UKSF. The Lynx is a dual role attack/utility helicopter also operated by the Commando Helicopter Force
more information on the Lynx AH.7
657 Squadron Operations
Photos of 657 Squadron Lynx AH7s:
- September 2000 - 2 Lynx helicopters from AAC 657 Sqn supported the SAS/SBS/1 PARA rescue mission, Operation Barras, in Sierra Leone, 2000. Armed with M134 miniguns, the Lynx helicopters provided close air support, pouring suppressive fire onto the enemy below.
- December 2001 - 2 657 Sqn Lynx choppersprovided cover for a joint SBS/SAS operation against the MV Nisha Cargo ship off the English coast. The 2 Lynx helicopters carried SBS/SAS sniper teams which kept overwatch over the vessel as their colleagues fast-roped down onto it from 7 Squadron Chinooks and Commando Helicopter Force Sea Kings.
- 2001-Present - with UKSF heavily engaged in both Afghanistan and Iraq, it is almost certain that 657 Squadron have been supporting SAS and SBS operations in both theatres. A couple of likely incidents which involved 657 Sqn helicopters are 2 recent SBS actions in Afghanistan:
||AAC 657 Squadron Info
||"Per Terras Perque Caelum"
(By Land and Sky)
||Lynx AH.7 Helicopters
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Royal Marines carrying out CQB drills
(click image for fullsize view & more info)