View Full Version : 233 OCU at Pembrey anyone?

22nd Mar 2004, 11:58
Hi all,

Does anyone here have any information/photos/anecdotes etc. on 233 OCU that was based at RAF Pembrey in South Wales (not the reformed Harrier OCU at Wittering) please?

The OCU was setup to ease the burden on 229 OCU at Chivenor when converting pilots to the Hunter and only operated for a couple of years up until 1957 I believe.

I ask because my father did his National Service there and I would love to know more about the place.

He has told me that besides the Hunter F.1s they also had Vampire T.11s and Mosquito target tugs, presumably TT.35s. He also told me a little about a number of accidents with young inexperienced pilots moving from Vampires to the much more powerful Hunters.

Anyone have anything more?


23rd Mar 2004, 10:44
Only thing I can find is in Action Stations 10:

"No 233 OCU formed here in September 1952 and closed in May 1957. Chiefly used Meteors and Vampires"

24th Mar 2004, 09:22
Thanks for your efforts BEagle. I suspect that because the unit was so short-lived (especially with the Hunters my father primarily worked on) it'll be tricky to find much info about.

I have since discovered that there is a 233 OCU Association though so maybe they can shed some light.

Thanks again.:ok:

24th Mar 2004, 13:33
They'll probably all be 'bona mates' yacking about 'nozzles', 'tripping the limiters', 'MEXE', 'press-ups', RVLs and other weird Harrier terms.....;)

25th Mar 2004, 09:36
A legacy of the Pembrey days was the Harrier 233OCU's badge of a Welsh lynx and the motto "Ymlaen" (Sp?) known by the lads as the "Yumlin Moggie".

25th Mar 2004, 11:11
Ymlaen means 'forward' in Welsh.

25th Mar 2004, 15:06
Gainsey - do you know if the Harrier OCU badge you mentioned is the same design as the old Pembrey badge or was the lynx and motto incorporated into a new design?

Malcolm G O Payne
26th Mar 2004, 20:46
I went through 233 OCU in early 1957. There was a Hunter element and also the Venom OCU, which I went through. We flew Vampire 5,9 and T11. When I did my Hunter OCU two years later at Chivenor it had closed.

27th Mar 2004, 12:15
(Never addressed a stranger like that before). Sorry, I don't know what the original badge was like and can't find a reference to the later badge, although the moggie's head was painted on the OCU's aircraft, just forward and below the cockpit.

29th Mar 2004, 23:03
I'm quite sure that 233 was the designator for the Hawk Tactical Conversion Unit based at Brawdy when I visited in April 1982 just before the Falklands kicked off. I was a mad keen UAS student sent there for an attachment and managed to get 6 flights in the hawk including some attacks on the range at Pembrey. A great week but ended up in the FAA and not RAF.

30th Mar 2004, 04:48
Perhaps you're thinking of 234 Sqn?

63 and 151 were at Chivenor, 234 and 79 at Brawdy. Then all manner of change came with the cuts of the 1990s:mad: :mad:

The TWUs disappeared and the lunacy of Valley based Hawks flying all the way to Pembrey range detachments at St Athan started.

Pembrey was only about 5 mins form wheels up at Chiv, not much further on a Caldey Gap departure from Brawdy.....