On 19th August 2022, No 602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force was presented with a new Standard by Councillor Jacqueline McLaren, Lord Lieutenant of the City during a parade held in the grounds of the High School of Glasgow. The parade was led by the Officer Commanding, Squadron Leader Chris Loughlin, in textbook style to the music of the newly formed Royal Auxiliary Air Force Band. The Chaplain in Chief, the Reverend Doctor (Air Vice-Marshal) Giles Legood, himself a former Auxiliary Chaplain with No 600 (City of London) Squadron, conducted the Service of Consecration.
Air Vice Marshal Richard Maddison, Air Officer Commanding No 22 Group, represented the Chief of the Air Staff. Other attendees included the Commandant General and the Inspector of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, two Trustees from the Royal Auxiliary Air Force Foundation and family, friends and former members of 602 Squadron including a close relative of Archie McKellar DSO DFC*, a Battle of Britain fighter ‘Ace’ who started his flying career with 602 Squadron.
Following the parade the City hosted a magnificent reception in the City Chambers where the new Standard was proudly displayed.
No 602 Squadron – the first Auxiliary Squadron – was formed at Renfrew on 15 September 1925. Formed initially as a bomber squadron, ‘Glasgow’s Own’ as it was known locally, became a fighter unit and was equipped with the Spitfire just in time to acquit itself so well during the Battle of Britain. In fact a Spitfire of 602 along with a Spitfire of 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron jointly shot down the first German Bomber of World War Two. Sadly, all the Auxiliary Air Force Squadrons were disbanded in 1957. The original Squadron Standard presented by Douglas, the 14th Duke of Hamilton, Honorary Air Commodore of 602 Squadron, was laid up in Glasgow Cathedral where it remains to this day.
To great acclaim, the Squadron was reformed on 1 July 2006. The City hosted a reception in the City Chambers to mark the event and the Sovereign’s Colour for the Royal Auxiliary Air Force was paraded. The then Inspector read out a message of good wishes from Her Majesty The Queen to the assembled company.