63 Airborne Squadron RCT/ RLC

63 Airborne Squadron RCT/ RLC

63 Airborne Squadron  formed part of 5 Airborne Brigade Logistic Battalion.

After its disbandment as a Parachute Squadron ( in 16 Para Brigade ) in the 1970s, 63 Squadron became a training squadron at Buller Barracks RCT Depot, Aldershot.

It reformed as an Airborne Squadron in support of 5 Airborne Brigade in  Spring 1983, having an HQ Troop, Transport Troop , Helicopter Troop & a Parachute Troop, consisting of 10 Para trained Soldiers as two  5 man sections: one with Leading Parachute Battalion Group  ( LPBG ), the other with Follow Up Parachute Battalion Group ( FUPG ). Each section was commanded by a Corporal, with 4 other ranks, each section had a radio & an LMG. 

Each section had an Eager Beaver cross country fork lift with 2 Air Portable Trailers dropped in on MSP ( Medium Stressed Platforms ), which were rigged by the Soldiers before they jumped with their respective Battalion groups, then de rigged after parachuting in & locating their respective "RV".   

Objectives were to initially provide transport to  Parachute Regiment Support Company units as  tactically required  & any other duties tasked by Parachute Regiment, then to set up Drop Zones ( DZ ) & recover aerial resupply of Ammunition, water, rations etc &, under command of 81 ( Airborne ) Company RAOC, move supplies to a Combat Supplies ( C Supps ) location, for Airborne units to collect, or, later, with Helicopter Troop, to guide Helicopters to collect supplies & hook up loads to Helicopters ( Chinooks ).

63 Squadron had many other Parachute trained Soldiers of all ranks, but only 10 were "in role" & receiving Para Pay.  

This contributor served with  63 Squadron LPBG from 1983 until leaving the Army in September 1986.

Many in the Squadron preferred to use the title "63 Airborne Squadron", but I don`t think it was an official title.  At some time between 1983 & 1986, the Squadron was incorporated into the newly re formed 1st Airborne Logistics Battalion, (5 Airborne Brigade ), with Airborne units of REME, RAOC, RPC, RMP. 

The RSM was a Parachute Regiment Soldier, as was the RQMS, Battalion Commander was an RCT Lt Colonel.  A black stable belt with Pegasus buckle was available.

At this time, only Soldiers who had passed Pre Parachute Selection ( "P" Company ) were allowed to wear the Maroon Beret, all others had to wear their respective Regimental berets.

The nucleus of 63 Squadron ( 5 Airborne Brigade )  was formed from 407 Troop RCT, which had been in support of 5 Infantry Brigade  ( later becoming 5 Airborne Brigade ) , during Op Corporate. The Troop was administered by 27 Logistic Group RCT ( Aldershot ). Several Parachute trained Soldiers served within 407 Troop but not " in Role".

47 Air Dispatch Squadron  ( at RAF Lyneham ) retained 10 Parachute trained Soldiers ( paid Para Pay  & re qualifying every year, but not allowed to wear the Maroon Beret ), after the 1970s disbandment of 63 Para Squadron ( 16 Para Brigade ). 

During the time this contributor served, there were 20 RCT Para trained & paid Soldiers, between 63 & 47 Squadrons.

A high level of personal fitness was required to serve in 63 Squadron & the Senior Ranks ensured these standards were rigorously maintained. 

The SSM & Troop Staff Sergeant   ( during this contributor`s service ) were both former members of the original 63 Para Squadron from 16 Para Brigade . 


With information supplied by Mr Bennet

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Latest Comments

keith bennett said:
Apologies , in my description of 63 Sqn duties , i mistakenly added 81 Airborne Ordnance Squadron , it was actually 82 Airborne Ordnance Squadron . Also , at the time i served , the OC of 63 Sqn & a Troop Corporal were also formerly 63 Sqn from 16 Para Bde .
kevin crossley said:
I served in 63 squadron 83 to 87 are you the Keith Bennett Bennie I shared a room with?
robert guiney said:
I also served in 63 Squadron, for a while I commanded the Para section as a corporal. The section at the time included Carlo Sissi, Tes Gage , Chas Ashton, Kev Crossley, Benny Bennet, Benson Mcaw, Paddy Gargan, Eggy Hughes and. Normally the section of 10 jumped in with the leading Parachute battalion group and was only split into 2 five man teams when both parachute battalions deployed for an exercise. At the time when I was there the Squadron had an HQ, Para Troop and Support Troop. Para Troop had 2 SNCO as Troop Commander and Troop Sergeant as well as Para Section of 10 Men and Helicopter handling section also with 10 men commanded by Ginge Knowles. As well as Jumping on Exercise with The Parachute Regiment we also went to Germany to earn our German wings with 272 Fallschirmjager Battalion. The Squadron Joined 5 Airborne Brigade Logistic Battalion along with 82 Ordanance Company and 10 Field Workshop REME. I hope you are all doing well. Regards Bob Guiney
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