The Royal Air Force (RAF) has announced that British and French tactical air traffic controllers have joined near Lyon to carry out tactical landings on unprepared surfaces.

The RAF C-130J and 1400M from the French Air and Space Force’s 61st Transport Wing executed approaches on to a grass runway.

According to RAF, the latest training activity provided an opportunity to develop ‘training tactics and procedures’ and gain knowledge on how each air force conducts such activities in complex environments.

Touchdown training on adverse terrain was initiated with the RAF hosting an AAE A400M military transport exercise at Pembrey Beach in Wales earlier this year.

Ambérieu-en-Bugey Air Base is the only site in France that allows large fighter jets, such as the A400M, to execute rough terrain qualifications.

French Air Force RAF liaison officer squadron leader Cannon said: “This type of training is essential to maintain the skills and competencies of both the aircrew and tactical air traffic controllers ATC personnel, who are required to deploy globally and work with partner nations in support of UK operations.

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“It is another demonstration of the strong bilateral relationship between our two air forces.”

The C-130J Hercules is the latest variant of the C-130, which is the US Air Force’s (USAF) principal tactical cargo and personnel transport aircraft.

Last month, RAF’s Hercules C-130J detachment from RAF Brize Norton took part in an exercise with Jordanian forces in the Middle East.