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Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Ted Squire, GCB, DFC, AFC, DL, FRAeS (7 October 1945 – 19 February 2018) was a senior Royal Air Force commander. He was a fast jet pilot in the 1970s, a squadron commander during the Falklands War and a senior air commander in the 1990s. Squire was Chief of the Air Staff from 2000 to 2003 during which time both Operation Veritas (in Afghanistan) and Operation Telic (in Iraq) were initiated. In retirement he became Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Imperial War Museum and Vice-Chairman of the Board of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Sir Peter Ted Squire
Born(1945-10-07)7 October 1945
Died19 February 2018(2018-02-19) (aged 72)
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Service/branchRoyal Air Force
Years of service1966–2003
RankAir Chief Marshal
Commands heldChief of the Air Staff (2000–03)
Strike Command (1999–00)
No. 1 Group (1993)
RAF Cottesmore (1986–88)
No. 1 (F) Squadron (1981–83)
Battles/warsFalklands War
Operation Veritas
Operation Telic
AwardsKnight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Distinguished Flying Cross
Air Force Cross
Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air

RAF careerEdit

Born the son of Wing Commander Frank Squire and Margaret Pascoe Squire (née Trump), Peter Squire attended the independent King's School, Bruton in Somerset[1] and was commissioned into the Royal Air Force on 15 July 1966.[2] Following initial officer training at the RAF College Cranwell and subsequent flying training, he was promoted to flying officer on 15 January 1967[3] and sent to No. 20 Squadron based in Singapore to fly Hunters in 1968.[1] He was promoted to flight lieutenant on 15 January 1969[4] and joined No. 4 Flying Training School in Anglesey in 1970.[1]

Squire was awarded the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air in the 1973 Birthday Honours[5] and, having been promoted to squadron leader on 1 July 1973,[6] he flew Harriers with No. 3 Squadron in Germany from 1975.[1] He was awarded the Air Force Cross in the 1979 Birthday Honours.[7]

 
Harrier, a type flown by Squire during the Falklands War

Promoted to wing commander on 1 July 1980,[8] Squire was appointed Commanding Officer of No. 1 (F) Squadron based at RAF Wittering flying Harriers in 1981.[1] In 1982 Squire led members of his squadron in action in the Falklands campaign[9] where he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.[10] He flew with his squadron to CFB Goose Bay in Canada on 13 April 1982, on a six-hour flight using air-to-air refuelling (AAR), for an exercise.[11] He departed for the Falklands on 3 May with his squadron from RAF St Mawgan to RAF Ascension Island where a few days later they boarded the Atlantic Conveyor.[12] Arriving in the South Atlantic, he transferred from the Atlantic Conveyor to HMS Hermes a few days before the Atlantic Conveyor was sunk by two Exocet missiles.[12] During bombing sorties in support of ground forces, on one occasion a bullet passed through his cockpit and temporarily distracted him before he found an alternative target.[10] On 9 June, his aircraft suffered engine failure and was damaged during a crash landing at the forward operating base ashore.[10] On 13 June, he was the first member of the RAF to launch a laser-guided bomb (LGB), with the target being illuminated by Major Mike Howes, in combat on Mount Longdon flying a Harrier GR3 with No. 1(F) Squadron.[12] Four Harriers from his squadron of ten were lost, three to ground fire and one after an engine failure led to a heavy landing.[13] His squadron was also the first to operate in a combat role from a British aircraft carrier since the Second World War.[14] Later in the year he was forced to eject on 6 November near Cape Pembroke in the Falklands due to a Harrier's engine failure.[14]

Squire became leader of the Command Briefing and Presentation Team and then went on to be Personal Staff Officer to the Air Officer Commanding RAF Strike Command in 1984.[1] Promoted to group captain on 1 July 1985,[15] Squire took up the appointment of Station Commander of RAF Cottesmore in 1986.[1]

He became Director Air Offensive at the Ministry of Defence in 1989.[1] Following his promotion to air commodore on 1 January 1990,[16] he became Senior Air Staff Officer at HQ Strike Command and Deputy Chief of Staff Operations UK Air Forces in 1991[1] and received further promotion to air vice marshal on 1 July 1991.[17]

Squire was appointed Air Officer Commanding No. 1 Group in February 1993; however, after only a few months he was replaced by Air Vice Marshal John Day.[18] Squire served as Assistant Chief of the Air Staff from 1994 and, having been promoted to air marshal on 9 February 1996,[19] he became Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (Programmes and Personnel) in 1996.[1] He was appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath in the 1997 Birthday Honours.[20] Appointed Air Aide-de-Camp to The Queen on 29 March 1999,[21] he was promoted to air chief marshal and became Commander-in-Chief RAF Strike Command and Commander Allied Air Forces Northwestern Europe on 30 March 1999.[22]

Squire became Chief of the Air Staff in 2000[1] and was advanced to Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath in the 2001 New Year Honours.[23] As Chief of the Air Staff he advised the British Government on the British air contribution to Operation Veritas in Afghanistan where air strikes were initiated by the UK in support of US-led military action in 2001[24] and then to Operation Telic in Iraq where the UK assisted with securing air superiority and carrying out missions such as targeting key Iraqi command and control centres in 2003.[25] He retired on 5 December 2003.[26]

Later lifeEdit

In retirement Squire joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.[27] He was Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Imperial War Museum from 2003 to 2011[1] and Vice-Chairman of the Board of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission from 2005 to 2008.[1] He was also a Governor at King's School, Bruton[1] and a Deputy Lieutenant of Devon.[28]

He died on 19 February 2018 at the age of 72.[29]

Personal lifeEdit

In 1970 he married Carolyn Joynson; they have three sons.[1] His main personal interest was golf.[1]

ArmsEdit

Coat of arms of Peter Squire
 
Notes
Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath since 2001
Crest
A four-winged bird Gules,armed, beaked, and langued Or.
Torse
Argent and Azure torse.
Escutcheon
Gyronny Azure and Murrey a Mullet of eight points gyronny Or and Argent voided fracted at the inner angles and the arms of each piece pointed the whole enclosing a Sun in Splendour Or a Bordure engrailed gobony of eight also Or and Argent.
Supporters
On either side a bull rampant regardant Gules armed, unguled and gorged Or with an astral crown of the last.
Motto
EXAMPLE THROUGH ENDEAVOUR[30]
Orders
Collar as grand cross Knight and the Order of the Bath circlet.[31]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Who's Who 2010, A & C Black, 2010, ISBN 978-1-4081-1414-8
  2. ^ "No. 44110". The London Gazette (Supplement). 9 September 1966. p. 9965.
  3. ^ "No. 44227". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 January 1967. p. 576.
  4. ^ "No. 44770". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 January 1969. p. 733.
  5. ^ "No. 45984". The London Gazette (Supplement). 22 May 1973. p. 6504.
  6. ^ "No. 46029". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 July 1973. p. 8289.
  7. ^ "No. 47869". The London Gazette (Supplement). 15 June 1979. p. 15.
  8. ^ "No. 48294". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 September 1980. p. 12376.
  9. ^ "No. 49194". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 December 1982. p. 16124.
  10. ^ a b c "No. 49134". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 October 1982. p. 12854.
  11. ^ "The No 1 (Fighter) Squadron Operation Corporate Diary". Ministry of Defence. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
  12. ^ a b c "Wing Commander Peter Squire, No. 1 (F) Squadron, RAF". Imperial War Museum. Archived from the original on 9 June 2011. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
  13. ^ "List of British Aircraft Destroyed". Naval History. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  14. ^ a b Briley, Harold (November 2003). "RAF's Falklands Role in War and Peace". Falklands Info. Archived from the original on 17 May 2012. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
  15. ^ "No. 50195". The London Gazette (Supplement). 15 July 1985. p. 9770.
  16. ^ "No. 52005". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 January 1990. p. 73.
  17. ^ "No. 52591". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 July 1991. p. 10091.
  18. ^ "Group #s 1 – 9". Air of Authority – A History of RAF Organisation. Archived from the original on 13 June 2012. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  19. ^ "No. 54314". The London Gazette. 12 February 1996. p. 2190.
  20. ^ "No. 54794". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 June 1997. p. 2.
  21. ^ "No. 55453". The London Gazette (Supplement). 12 April 1999. p. 4139.
  22. ^ "No. 55442". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 March 1999. p. 3613.
  23. ^ "No. 56070". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2000. p. 2.
  24. ^ "Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Squire; Chief of the Air Staff". Interavia Business & Technology. October 2001. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  25. ^ "Iraq War: Commitment: Population can face the future with confidence, says Ingram". The Birmingham Post. 5 April 2003. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  26. ^ "No. 57168". The London Gazette (Supplement). 6 January 2004. p. 130.
  27. ^ "No. 57175". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 January 2004. p. 385.
  28. ^ "No. 58638". The London Gazette. 12 March 2008. p. 3859.
  29. ^ Squire
  30. ^ The Heraldry Gazette, The Heraldry Society, December 2008, p. 7
  31. ^ Order of the Bath Insignia, Heraldsnet . Retrieved 28 December 2013

External linksEdit

Military offices
Preceded by
P J Goddard
Station Commander RAF Cottesmore
1986–1988
Succeeded by
R D Elder
Preceded by
Richard Johns
Air Officer Commanding No. 1 Group
1993
Succeeded by
John Day
Preceded by
Anthony Bagnall
Assistant Chief of the Air Staff
1994–1996
Succeeded by
Timothy Jenner
Preceded by
Sir Thomas Boyd-Carpenter
Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (Programmes and Personnel)
1996–1999
Succeeded by
Sir Malcolm Pledger
Preceded by
Sir John Allison
Commander-in-Chief Strike Command
1999–2000
Succeeded by
Sir Anthony Bagnall
Preceded by
Sir Richard Johns
Chief of the Air Staff
2000–2003
Succeeded by
Sir Jock Stirrup
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Sir John Allison
Air Aide-de-Camp to Her Majesty The Queen
1999–2003
Succeeded by
Sir Jock Stirrup
Preceded by
Sir Jock Slater
Chairman Board of Trustees, Imperial War Museum
2006–2011
Succeeded by
Sir Francis Richards