Masirah Island
21.09.1976 - 26.03.1977

Here are photos from my six months tour on the Island of Masirah, including a three-week diving course on Cyprus with friends of 262 Signal Squadron.

RAF Masirah was located on the island of Masirah which is about 15 miles off the East coast of Oman in the Arabian Sea. Masirah is approximately 40 miles long by 10 miles wide at its widest point and four miles wide at its narrowest point. 
Masirah was first used as a British military base in the early 1930s. A small stone building used as a fuel store for flying boats and land based aircraft, was at the midpoint of the island on the West side.
The RAF base closed down on 31.03.1977 when there was no longer a need to maintain staging posts.

603 Signal Troop 603 Signal Troop (Reserve) [later (MIDEAST) and (AS)]

Originally formed as the British Forces Arabian Peninsula Signal Troop Kenya, 603 Signal Troop served in East Africa in the early 1960s, before being absorbed into 15th Signal Regiment as Forward Air Control Detachments. The Troop was re-formed on 1 July 1971 at Masirah, and remained there until March 1977, when it disbanded. During this period it was under the command of 3rd Signal Group based on Cyprus. This Troop was unusual in that it had its own emblem, which consisted of the side view of an elephant standing with trunk raised high. We were about 20 soldiers in all, the Troop Commander being Foreman of Signals (FOS). We were Telecommunications Mechanics, and it was our job to keep the telephones, cables, and communications running on the base.

Photos of the troop, the lads and around the Airfield

It wasn´t all hard work. Because of the heat we stopped working at midday, apart from those on standby.

Now and then we went on fishing trips with the locals.

Once it rained for 5 minutes, and I mean "It rained"

The Masirah Defence Force, ready to fight to save the Island (Yeah, for sure!). Army and Air Force (see the difference)

Even the tour comes to an end, and the Pongo that was going home went with a tour around the base, and full military honour.

Here are photos of my class 3 diver course in cyprus.
Happy Days.

Once in a while, sports events such as football or tug of war was organized between, Army/Airforce/Locals. Great fun for everyone and cemented friedships all around.

There were poorer areas on the Island, and sometimes we would drive out with sweets and other bits an pieces for the children and the locals.

Every couple of months, a troop from the C.S.E (now B.F.B.S) would come by to entertain the troops, sometimes a sight for sore eyes.

Last but not least, a few shots while working on the airfield. We didn´t just find cable´s, the dangers included snakes and scorpions.

Last but not least.

Me:      Sir, I`ve come to replace your telephone with a newer model.
Flt.Lt.:  Sorry, but no you can´t.
Me:      Why not sir?
Flt.Lt:   Because this one has my number in it.

Another. (True)

Me:      My god sir, what´s that, why is oil dripping from the phone.
Flt.Lt:  The Pressel was stuck, so I thought I´d oil it.

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Email: seanplowden@plowden-wardlaw.de