New boss appointed at RAF Wittering

Group Captain Rich Pratley with Group Captain Tony Keeling
Group Captain Rich Pratley with Group Captain Tony Keeling

An aircraft engineer who once served at former RAF Cottesmore has been named station commander at RAF Wittering.

Group Captain Tony Keeling, 47, who has 30-years of experience in the military takes over the role. He replaced Group Captain Rich Pratley in the role last week.

Grp Capt Keeling reached the rank of corporal at RAF Cottesmore and his wife Bobby was a dental hygienist at RAF Wittering before they moved away.

He said: “It’s a huge privilege to be taking command of RAF Wittering, particularly as we head towards celebrating the RAF’s 100th anniversary in 2018.

“Bobby and I know first-hand and how much the local community supports RAF Wittering and the fantastic things that Stamford and the surrounding area have to offer. I’m looking forward to learning about the people, roles and challenges of the wide variety of units at RAF Wittering, as well as our colleagues from the British Army and our commerical partners.”

Grp Capt Keeling took a commission in 1999 as engineering officer.

His posts have included being senior engineering officer of 2 (Army Co-operation) Squadron in 2006 and Officer Commanding Engineering and Logistics Wing at RAF Lossiemouth, in Scotland, between 2006-09.

Grp Capt Keeling has also twice served at the Ministry of Defence, in London.

RAF Wittering held a flight safety day to show how the base avoids accidents.