A World War II Air Force bomber squadron was reformed on January 1 at RAAF Base Glenbrook, but with a significant role change.
The new No. 464 Squadron is the military public affairs unit for the Air Force.
Wing Commander Fiona Van Der Snoek is the squadron’s first commanding officer in more than 76 years.
“This is a squadron with an incredibly rich history of service, and one that we’re very proud to be carrying the heritage of,” Wing Commander Van Der Snoek said.
“Between 1942 and 1945, No. 464 Squadron’s personnel established a reputation for precision bombing that earned it the nickname ‘the Gestapo Hunters’.
“The role of our squadron from now will be very different, but nonetheless dedicated to supporting the wider Air Force, Defence, and whole-of-government efforts.”
The new No. 464 Squadron’s workforce is made up mostly of public affairs officers and Air Force imagery specialists, and the unit forms part of the Air Warfare Centre’s Information Warfare Directorate.
Wing Commander Van Der Snoek said while No. 464 Squadron would be headquartered at RAAF Base Glenbrook, the majority of its personnel would work from bases around Australia.
“We are committed to sharing Air Force’s story, and delivering an accurate record of our people, squadrons and operations,” Wing Commander Van Der Snoek said.
“This year is the centenary of our Air Force, and the organisation is experiencing considerable change as to how we deliver air and space power in support of Defence.
“While the new No. 464 Squadron will have a very different role from its former one, the badge, heritage and identity of the original squadron will live on.
“We will retain the squadron badge and English translation of its motto, ‘equanimity’ – which means calmness under pressure.
“During the war, No. 464 Squadron built its reputation by working in small teams, cooperating closely with other allied squadrons, and completing missions of great importance to a much wider war effort.
“All of these are important attributes and qualities for our workforce as we bring this squadron into the 21st century.”
Coinciding with the return of No. 464 Squadron, Air Force has disbanded No. 28 Squadron at HMAS Harman in the Australian Capital Territory, and relocated six personnel positions to RAAF Base Glenbrook.
“Since 2012, No. 28 Squadron has been responsible for much of the imagery and public affairs' workforce within Air Force,” Wing Commander Van Der Snoek said.
“No. 28 Squadron provided a valuable service and captured a permanent record of Air Force service, from operations in the Middle East region to the introduction of new capability like the F-35A.
“To everyone who has served with No. 28 Squadron, I thank you for providing the foundation and capability that will allow us to succeed into the future.”