Honours for RAF Wittering personnel

Station and support force personnel from Royal Air Force Wittering have been recognised with a series of awards in the 2022 New Year’s Honours List.

By Stephen Briggs
Tuesday, 18th January 2022, 3:46 pm
Sharon Pollard.

Civilian Youth Worker Sharon Pollard received a commendation from Air Officer Commanding RAF No 2 Group. Sharon has worked tirelessly with Service children and young people for over 10 years. Appointed as RAF Wittering’s Airplay Youth Worker in 2017, Sharon is integral to the RAF Wittering Community Support and Airplay teams which through her exemplary work.

Mark Davis MBE, the Community Development Officer at RAF Wittering, said: “Sharon Pollard is a worthy recipient of this award due to her commitment, energy and determination to offer the best service for young people in Wittering. I am really pleased her work with young people has been recognised.”

Elite engineers based at RAF Wittering also received commendations in the New Year’s Honours List. No 71 Inspection & Repair Squadron specialises in aircraft repair, non-destructive testing and aircraft weighing, and the Squadron received both individual and team commendations.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Sgt Michael Matthias

Sergeant Michael Matthias was awarded a commendation from Air Officer Commanding RAF No 2 Group. Sgt Matthias has been instrumental in introducing 3D printing technology to 71 Squadron, which could ultimately reduce the time grounded aircraft have to wait for certain types of spare parts.

The Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) Team at 71 Squadron were awarded a commendation from RAF Deputy Commander Operations. NDT is an important tool in aircraft maintenance and includes the inspection of aircraft structures and engines for hidden damage, corrosion, and other irregularities.

The Expeditionary Airfield Facilities (EAF) Flight from 5001 Squadron also received a commendation from the Deputy Commander Operations. In an extraordinary twelve-month period, the team collectively spent 4580 days away, equating to approximately five months per team member.

Squadron Leader Alicia Mason is Officer Commanding 5001 Squadron, she said: “I am super proud of our EAF team, they completed 37 separate temporary hangars and buildings across nine operational theatres, and on top of that they continued their regular maintenance tasks across six other locations globally.”

Wing Commander Mike Dutton commands No 42 Expeditionary Support Wing, to which 71 Sqn and 5001 Sqn belong. He said: “I was delighted that personnel and teams from 42 Wing were recognised in the New Year’s Honours List. Their contributions to Defence and engineering and are outstanding, and show just how technically capable and diverse this wing is.”

The Cambridgeshire Station is home to the RAF’s specialist engineering and logistics squadrons that support UK air operations and exercises at home and abroad, collectively known as the A4 Force Elements.

Wing Commander Jez Case is the Station Commander at RAF Wittering. He said: “Congratulations to all the recipients; Air Officer Commanding commendations recognise exceptional work, well above and beyond what we expect of our personnel. “All our recipients have shown incredible dedication to the Royal Air Force, and in Mrs Pollards case, to the wider local community. RAF Wittering continues to deliver on behalf of Defence and our Nation because of the quality of people

that we have. My thanks to them all.”