It was affectionately known as “the pig” for its ability to fly low and fast during bombing runs, but to pilot Geoffrey Talbot the F-111 was simply “magnificent”.
“It’s very difficult to explain to somebody what it’s like flying at 600 miles an hour, two or three hundred feet above the ground, in total darkness and not be able to see a darn thing,” the retired air commodore said.
“It’s pitch black, in the middle of the night, and you can totally control where you are going and still hit a pin for your target at 500 miles an hour.
“It’s difficult to explain what that’s like, and it’s the last one that could do it.”
The F-111 was an all-weather supersonic tactical attack aircraft capable of flying at two and half times the speed of sound at high altitude.