Royalty and statesmen

The Queen was guest of honour to witness the biggest flypast since 1990, marking the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Britain
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The Queen presents the new Colours to the RAF, the fifth time she has done so. "I hand over my Colour with the confidence that you will guard it well, just as you continue to guard your heritage, ethos and unique contribution to defence," she said
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The Queen helps the RAF to celebrate its 90th anniversary

12 JULY 2008
The Queen and Prince Philip watched the skies of southern England turn red, white and blue on Friday as the Royal Air Force marked its 90th anniversary.

Highlight of the day was a spectacular flyby of 90 planes, one for each year of the RAF's history, which took more than ten minutes to pass overhead.

The British monarch also met 112-year-old Henry Allingham, the oldest survivor of the First World War. "It's a wonderful occasion," said the veteran, who was meeting the Queen for the ninth time.

As well as the impressive display at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire the biggest flypast since 1990 the Queen presented the RAF with new Colours to mark the anniversary.

Dressed in lilac dress with pink trim and a pink hat, she paid tribute to the servicemen and women, saying that they could be "immensely proud" of the force's achievements over the last 90 years.

"I have been enormously proud with the professionalism, skill, determination and courage with which the men and women of the RAF serve, often in the most challenging and dangerous circumstances," she praised.


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