Operational Conversion Unit
Temper the Sword
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Updated: 6 Jan 12
Formed: 15 Mar 1947 at RAF Lindholme, renaming of 1653 Conversion Unit
Disbanded: 15 Aug 1952 (Lincoln conversion elements continued at Waddington and Upwood)
Reformed: 1 Aug 1953 at RAF Upwood, renaming of Lincoln Conversion Flight
Disbanded: 1 Feb 1955 renamed again to Lincoln Conversion Flight
Reformed: 31 May 1956 RAF Waddington
Disbanded: 31 Aug 1981
Squadron was based at:
RAF Lindholme :: 15 Mar 1947 - 1949
RAF Scampton :: 1949 - 15 Oct 1952
RAF Upwood :: 1 Aug 1953 - 1 Feb 1955
RAF Waddington :: 31 May 1956 - 1961
RAF Finningley :: 1961 - Dec 1969
RAF Scampton :: Dec 1969 - 31 Aug 1982
Lancaster: - ?1949
Lincoln: ?1949 - 1956
Vulcan B Mk1: 11 Jul 1957 - 1960
Vulcan B Mk2: 1 Jul 1960 - 31 Aug 1981
Handley Page Hastings T5 :: - 30 Jun 1977
YW, A3 : 1948 - 1949
230 Operational Conversion Unit formed at RAF Lindholme by the renaming of 1653 Conversion Unit on 15 March 1947 and was responsible for training (converting) pilots to fly piston engined aircraft. It was equipped with the Lancaster until moving to RAF Scampton in 1949 and re-equipping with the Lincoln. It disbanded here on 15 October 1952.
In its second incarnation, 230 OCU was created by merging the Lincoln Conversion Flight elements at RAF Waddington and RAF Upwood on 1 August 1953. It was disbanded by reverting back to its previous title on 1 Feb 1955.
Stood up on 31 May 1956 at RAF Waddington to train crews for the new Vulcan B1 bomber coming into service, the OCU was due to receive its first Vulcan, XA897, in 1956. This was unfortunately destroyed returning from a 'fly the flag' tour to New Zealand in September, on approach to London Airport in bad weather conditions. This was the first Vulcan B1 to have been received by the RAF. This set back prevented the OCU from acquring a Vulcan until 1957. The first crews trained went on to form 83 Sqn which received its first aircraft on 11 July 1957. A total of six squadrons were eventually equipped with the Vulcan B1.
Training with the B2 began in 1960, with the first B2 variant to be delivered to the RAF on 1 Jul 1960, going to 230 OCU.
230 OCU Radar Training Flight had previously been Bomber Command Bombing School at RAF Lindholme and was merged into 230 OCU after 1972 providing radar training.
230 OCU ceased flying in Aug 1981 and disbanded on 31 Aug 1981 at RAF Scampton. The famous 'last Vulcan' XH588 served on 230 OCU.
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