A selection of images of a Lynx HMA.8 and Sea King ASaC.7 in the static display during a misty RNAS Culdrose Air Day 2016.
All photographs kindly contributed by Dave Taskis (please take time to visit his blog by clicking here).
Lynx HMA.8 ZF562/404 appears to be having something of an identity crisis. It is wearing Iron Duck nose art of HMS Iron Duke but has HMS Monmouth titles painted on the radar fairing.
Sea King ASaC.7 ZE422/192 of 849 NAS perfectly camouflaged against the misty backdrop in the static display at RNAS Cudrose. The Sea King ASaC.7 – known throughout the Navy as Baggers – are the ‘eyes in the sky’ of the Royal Navy, searching for aerial threats to the Fleet with its powerful radar or suspicious movements on the ground in support of land forces. They are the among the last examples of the ubiquitous Sea King in British service.
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No.771 Naval Air Squadron Sea King (royalnavy.mod.uk)
The squadron which flies the Westland Sea King in the Search and Rescue (SAR) role has now handed over the life-saving responsibility to the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA). The MCA will use private firm Bristow Helicopters flying modern Sikorsky S-92s from Newquay Airport to replace the Sea Kings. As part of the transfer of duties a number of Royal Navy personnel will be leaving military service to work for Bristow.
Commanding Officer of 771 NAS, Lieutenant Commander Dick Calhaem, said;
A lot of the new Bristow team are ex-771 so they are very familiar with the Cornish coastline and should know the ropes well.
The standing down of No.771 NAS also brings the retirement of the Sea King from UK service a little bit closer. From March 2016 only the airborne early warning Sea King ASaC.7 will remain in the British inventory until replaced by a variant of the Merlin helicopter in 2018.