The Band of the Royal Air Force College


Since its formation in 1920, The Band of the Royal Air Force College is arguably the Band which is most steeped in musical history and tradition.

Based at The RAF College Cranwell, Lincolnshire since its formation, the Band continues to perform at a diverse range of venues and engagements across the UK and in countries worldwide.

On parade, the Band has performed at the world-renowned Edinburgh Tattoo, 'Changing the Guard' at Buckingham Palace and was the first RAF Band to change the guard at Edinburgh Castle in July 2014. Battle of Britain Sunset Ceremonies, Marching Displays, Freedom Parades and displays at Air and County shows also form a major part of the Band's itinerary. A highlight was playing a pivotal role in the 70th Anniversary celebration of the Dambusters Raid at RAF Scampton in May 2013, which was featured live on BBC television.

In 1923, the Band became the first military band to broadcast on BBC Cardiff and has since excelled with recent broadcasts on BBC Radio 2 with Clare Teal. The recent CD recording of American Legends follows on from our other successful recordings of; Sing! Swing Wing, The RAF Swing Wing and the RAF Charitable Trust's 2014 'RAF in Concert' Tour CD.

The Band enjoys performing at concerts throughout the year, many in support of charities such as the RAF Benevolent Fund and Royal Air Force Association. A highlight for many musicians is the Annual RAF Charitable Trust concert series, performing in many of the country's major concert halls. In 2011, the Band featured with Brian May and Kerry Ellis in the prestigious outdoor concert 'Anthems in the Park' at RAF College Cranwell, followed in 2013 with joint performances with 'Jonathon and Charlotte' of Britain's Got Talent fame.

The Band completed the 2015 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. The Band has enjoyed an exciting and varied 2016, starting with a tour of Australia and New Zealand, where the Band performed as part of the 'Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Down Under'. Following that, all the RAF Bands took part in the Sims Cup Drill Competition for the first time since 1998, which was held in front of the RAF College. Other highlights included recording the CD for the 2016 RAF In Concert Tour and performing live on Facebook at the prestigious Symphony Hall, Birmingham, reaching over 52,000 people.

As serving members of the RAF, College Band personnel are also required to support various operations worldwide. Our personnel have served in Afghanistan, Turkey, Iraq, Cyprus and The Falkland Islands. Our roles have included aircraft guarding, ambulance driving, convoy commanding to passenger handling.

Squadron Leader Richard A Murray BMus(Hons) LRSM LLCM RAF
Director of Music
The Band of the RAF College

Squadron Leader Murray began playing the flute and piano from an early age under the guidance of the music staff at Downshire School, Carrickfergus and at Belfast High School. He was soon studying music at the University of Ulster, graduating with honours in 1997. Richard joined Royal Air Force Music Services in November 1997 and served briefly with the Western Band of the Royal Air Force at RAF Locking. Prior to his posting as Principal Flautist with the Band of the Royal Air Force Regiment at RAF Cranwell in 1999, Richard was awarded the Cassel Silver Medal by The Worshipful Company of Musicians. While at Cranwell Richard continued his musical studies gaining Licentiateships in Performance and Conducting from the London College and Royal Schools of Music. For his efforts he was awarded another Silver Medal from the Worshipful Company of Musicians on completion of the Bandmaster Course in 2006. On promotion to Sergeant in 2008, Richard was posted to The Central Band of the RAF.

Richard received his Commission and was awarded the MacRoberts Prize on completion of Initial Officer Training Course No.17 at RAF College Cranwell in February 2010. Following his first tour as Director of Music to The Band of the RAF Regiment, Richard was assigned to The Central Band of the RAF in 2012.
Having completed a Junior Officer Development Programme at the Defence Academy, Shrivenham in 2015 Richard was posted to Headquarters Music Services as Branch Advisor; responsible for all aspects of strategic management planning, recruitment, training, budgets, allocations and policy administration.

Richard has recorded for the BBC and has conducted at numerous prestigious state, national and international events from the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, the London Olympics, Basel Tattoo (Switzerland) and WW1 Commemorations in New Delhi (India).
In September 2016 Richard returned to Cranwell and is the current Director of Music to the Band of the RAF College. Following promotion to Squadron Leader in February 2017, Richard completed the Intermediate Command and Staff Course (Air) at the Defence Academy. Outside of work Richard enjoys quality family time with his wife Megan and is kept on his toes with three young daughters.