THE new Commanding Officer at RNAS Yeovilton was yesterday given a warm welcome by South Somerset District Council.

Brigadier Mark Noble took command of RNAS Yeovilton in July and is the first Royal Marine to command an air station in this country since 1915.

He was greeted by council chairman, Cllr Ian Martin, during a visit yesterday where they discussed their aspirations to further improve relations between the air base and the district council as well as the wider community.

Brigadier Mark Noble said “I am delighted to be back at Yeovilton again, and especially privileged to command an air station which has been an important part of Somerset for nearly 70 years.

"The air station has rarely been so busy with our personnel engaged in Afghanistan and operating at sea around the world.

"We greatly appreciate the support and close relationship with the local Somerset community which has developed over all these years.

"I will do all I can to ensure that this relationship continues to flourish.”

Cllr Ian Martin added: “We were absolutely delighted to welcome Brigadier Mark Noble back to South Somerset and to the district council.

"Clearly RNAS Yeovilton is an important and integral part of the district.

"What we both want to do is to widen our joint community relations and extend the excellent partnerships that we currently enjoy.”