AN INDEPENDENT school near York has paid tribute to close neighbours 72 squadron, based at RAF Linton-on-Ouse, with students and staff gathering to watch the final flight of the Tucano training aircraft.

Students and staff at Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate, in Thorpe Underwood, congregated on the school’s sports pitches to pay homage and watch the historic aircraft fly in formation for the last time.

Students in King’s Magna Middle School formed the number ‘72’ on the school’s hockey pitch, which was visible from the aircraft, whilst the rest of the school gathered together close by to enjoy the Tucano’s final performance.

Tucano aircrafts entered service 30 years ago as trainer planes for pilots wanting to progress onto fast jets.

To mark the retirement of the aircraft, the Tucanos powered down for the last time at RAF Linton-on-Ouse. The base will continue to host the Yorkshire Universities Air Squadron until the end of 2020 when they too will move to a new home.