OLD met new when a founding member of a military unit paid a call on serving personnel - 67 years after he joined the corps.

Peter Gannon was just 18-years-old when he joined the newly formed 34 Squadron, RAF Regiment, which almost immediately deployed to Egypt.

Now aged 85 and living near Manchester, he travelled to the squadron’s base at RAF Leeming with his son Mike to share tales of his service - and was able to get hands-on with some of the RAF Regiment’s latest kit.

And in a true display of “esprit de corps” crossing generations, he met 34 Squadron’s newest and youngest member – Leading Aircraftman Nathan Valentine-Hyde, who turned 17 in May.

Peter said: “It’s been wonderful – it’s brought back a lot of memories. 34 Squadron always had something about it.

“We always had the best drill team, the best football and cricket teams.

“In all the time I was there, we never fought or had any confrontation between us. I wouldn’t change a thing – such good times.”

Commanding officer Squadron Leader Matt Jupp said: “Peter Gannon was a founding member of 34 Squadron RAF Regiment and so it was a real honour to welcome him back.

“It was a huge privilege to hear in amazing detail fond memories of his experiences from his time in the RAF Regiment.

“He hadn’t forgotten a thing - and even provided the officers’ mess stewards his service number when he ordered his lunch.”

He added: “Peter had fascinating stories of his training during the time of national service and we very much enjoyed hearing about the friendships he made within the RAF Regiment.

“His memories really highlighted to me that although equipment and training methods have changed since 1951, the comradeship that the RAF Regiment provided him is still as strong today as it was when he was a gunner.

“We very much look forward to seeing Peter and his son again and hope that other past members make contact with RAF Leeming or the RAF Regiment.

“In this our centenary year, and as the RAF progresses at pace as a fifth generation air force, it is key that the memories and experiences of those who have served before us are not lost .”