Photographers around North Devon were treated to the rare sight of a giant RAF transport plane yesterday (Monday, June 15).

An ultra-clear shot of the RAF C17 during its visit to North Devon. Picture: Robert CudmoreAn ultra-clear shot of the RAF C17 during its visit to North Devon. Picture: Robert Cudmore

The huge C17 Globemaster from RAF Brize Norton was spotted around RMB Chivenor, Barnstaple and the estuary area, prompting a flurry of great pictures on social media.

An RAF spokesman confirmed the aircraft was conducting routine pilot training in the South West, which included practice approaches at Chivenor.

The pictures captured the C17 as it carried out several ‘touch and go’ manoeuvres where the aircraft touches down on the runway before taking off again, allowing the ability to practice multiple take-offs and landings in a short time.

The C17 can be rapidly deployed anywhere in the world, to war zones or to bring humanitarian relief to disaster areas.

The C17 pictured over Barnstaple. Picture: Phil SobeyThe C17 pictured over Barnstaple. Picture: Phil Sobey

It was used extensively during the Afghanistan conflict and can carry more than 45,000 kilos plus large items of equipment and vehicles or even Chinook helicopters.

It has a range of more than 5,000 miles.

The RAF C17 Globemaster taking off from RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe RAF C17 Globemaster taking off from RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner

The RAF C17 Globemaster taking off from RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe RAF C17 Globemaster taking off from RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner

The RAF C17 transport plane pictured above Chaddiford Lane, Barnstaple. Picture: Cathy EdwardsThe RAF C17 transport plane pictured above Chaddiford Lane, Barnstaple. Picture: Cathy Edwards

The RAF C17 transport plane pictured above Chaddiford Lane, Barnstaple. Picture: Cathy EdwardsThe RAF C17 transport plane pictured above Chaddiford Lane, Barnstaple. Picture: Cathy Edwards

The C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob CowlardThe C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob Cowlard

The C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob CowlardThe C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob Cowlard

The C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob CowlardThe C17 Globemaster during is visit to North Devon on Monday, June 15. Picture: Bob Cowlard

The huge C17 Globemaster aircraft has been carrying out extensive training in North Devon and around RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe huge C17 Globemaster aircraft has been carrying out extensive training in North Devon and around RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner

The RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner

The RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner

The RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew RaynerThe RAF C17 Globemaster aircraft practicing 'touch and go' landings at RMB Chivenor. Picture: Andrew Rayner