Avro Vulcan in the Cold War: a pilot's perspective

In the November 2014 issue of Aviation News, Dino Carrara talked to Edward Jarron, a former Vulcan pilot, about his time flying the big delta on the front line and at airshows

Air Commodore Edward Jarron (Ret) joined the RAF in the early 1960s with the aim of becoming a fighter pilot, however after completing the fast jet advanced flying course on the Folland Gnat at RAF Valley, Anglesey, he – like the majority on his course – was posted to the Vulcan force, which was being built up at the time. 

The then Sqn Ldr Edward Jarron is on the far right.  To his left is co-pilot Flt Lt John Hills, then AEO Flt Lt ‘Chip’ Brunsden and nav/plotter Flt Lt Dai Barnes.  This photo was taken during Edward’s second stint with 35 Sqn when he was a captain and flight commander.
The then Sqn Ldr Edward Jarron is on the far right. To his left is co-pilot Flt Lt John Hills, then AEO Flt Lt ‘Chip’ Brunsden and nav/plotter Flt Lt Dai Barnes. This photo was taken during Edward’s second stint with 35 Sqn when he was a captain and flight commander. Edward Jarron Archive

He was sent to 230 Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) at RAF Finningley in South Yorkshire to learn to fly the Vulcan on a six-month course involving 50 hours in the air.  Edward said: “All the OCU taught was how to fly the aircraft.  You were assigned to a crew, so five guys would leave together to go on a squadron.  It would then take almost a year on the front line to become combat ready.  Once you attained this you were qualified to go on nuclear QRA [Quick Reaction Alert]. 

He added: "The

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