The Prince of Wales, Patron of The Intelligence Agencies, visits RAF Menwith Hill

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Eugene Oliver
  • 501st Combat Support Wing Public Affairs

On Monday 12th October, The Prince of Wales visited RAF Menwith Hill in North Yorkshire.

RAF Menwith Hill is a joint UK / U.S. defence communications establishment, providing intelligence support for UK, U.S. and allied interests.

During the visit that lasted nearly an hour and a half, His Royal Highness toured the newly dedicated Serenity Park, built to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of operations at the site in September of this year, and the base’s close relationship with the local community. The park is a community space where people can find quiet and calm and where families can gather. It will also form the focal point of community events and celebrations in the years to come.

His Royal Highness later visited the operations centre where he learnt more about the station’s history, mission and organizational partnerships, before addressing members of the workforce.

During his time on the station, The Prince of Wales met members of the Ministry of Defence and staff who work at the base in order to thank them, and to recognise the important work that they undertake.

The Prince of Wales was hosted by the RAF Cdr, Sqn Ldr Geoff Dickson, and the U.S. Site Director.

Sqn Ldr Geoff Dickson, RAF Cdr, RAF Menwith Hill, said following the visit

“The delight on the faces of our employees reflects the honour we all feel in seeing His Royal Highness come to RAF Menwith Hill to see firsthand the work that we do, particularly in the year in which we are commemorating 60 years of operations.”

Background on HRH’s relationship with the Intelligence Agencies

The Prince of Wales maintains a close interest in the work of the Intelligence Agencies.  In 2011, he became the first Royal Patron of all three main intelligence Agencies (MI5, SIS and GCHQ), and he has regular meetings with senior representatives from each agency. His Royal Highness presents the Intelligence Agencies annual awards, officially known as ‘The Prince of Wales’s Intelligence Community Awards’.  The awards were The Prince’s idea, as a way to honour those whose vital work could never be celebrated publically.