Exercise Agile Protector: RAF Personnel Work With F-35 Team During Training

Personnel from Number 3 RAF Force Protection Wing tested their operational capabilities before they take on contingent readiness next month.

Personnel from Number 3 RAF Force Protection Wing (3 FP Wg) have completed one of their final training exercises, during Agile Protector.

The exercise involved several locations being used at once, to test the wing's abilities to operate at the required level.

The wing, based at RAF Marham, worked alongside the F-35 team from RAF Marham, Joint Personnel Recovery Ground Extraction in Norfolk and short-term training teams from other fixed locations.

Officer Commanding Number 3 Force Protection Wing said Exercise Agile Protector allowed 3 FP Wg "an opportunity to rehearse and validate its operational capabilities" before assuming contingent readiness in April.

An unplanned diversion of an F-35 to a civilian or military airfield was simulated during the training, with 3 FP Wg required focus on the protection of the jet.

A 'security bubble' was then formed around the aircraft.

As part of Exercise Agile Protector, personnel guarded an F-35B aircraft during a simulated task (Picture: MOD).

The flights were subject to non-firing objects, in order to challenge both commanders and gunners, as well as simulated incursions by pedestrians and vehicles, insider threats and subtle attempts to penetrate the controlled area.

The second week of training saw a full wing deployment to Sennybridge, Wales, bringing a change of pace with deliberate operations in a high threat environment.

A crashed aircraft and isolated persons scenario was simulated during that section of the exercise.

It meant a focus on rehearsing and validating 3 FP Wg's ability to deliver Aircraft Post-Crash Management and Joint Personnel Recovery Ground Extraction.

The Officer Commanding of 3 FP Wg said the exercise also provided an opportunity to integrate "Tactical Police Flight for the first time".

The RAF said the creation of the first Tactical Police Flight into Number 3 FP Wg will provide commanders with a range of specialist protective security, counter-intelligence and law enforcement skills.

Cover image: MOD.