# SP219 Tornado and Lightning, 9 Sqn; 31 Sqn; 617 Sqn
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Squadron Prints Lithograph No SP219 - RAF Marham.
The UKâs F-35B Lightning Force will operate from RAF Marham in June 2018 spearheaded by 617 (The Dambusters) Squadron. The arrival of the F-35B Lightning marks the transition of the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy into the âNext Generationâ of Combat Air Power where integration and information with stealth will act as the foundation for success on future warfighting operations from land or sea. ZM137 (BK-3) was the first Lightning to be delivered to the front-line. Since entering service in 2015, this aircraft has been embedded within VMFAT-501, the United States Marine Corps Operational Conversion Unit at MCAS Beaufort in South Carolina. ZM137 was also the first UK F-35B Lightning to fly in the UK participating in the Royal International Air Tattoo in 2016.
RAF Marham has been the home of the Tornado Force since 1982 and the aircraft has been the stalwart of UK Combat Air Power for over 35 years. With over 27 years spent on near continuous combat operations in the Middle East, Libya and Africa, the Tornado Force is approaching its final few months reaching the end of its service life in March 2019. The aircraft will depart providing an outstanding air-to-surface capability enabled through a range of state-of the art weapons and reconnaissance pod. Tornado Force operations are currently provided through IX(Bomber) Squadron and 31 Squadron. ZA601 was the first Tornado GR1 to be accepted by 617 Sqn on 23 Apr 1982 and still serves today being operated by the Tornado Force from RAF Akrotiri supporting Operation SHADER.