Tam's Tall Tales

- Sea Kings Stood Down

Royal Navy Search and Rescue Sea King Helicopters

Sea Kings Stood Down
Search and rescue helicopters from HMS Gannet at Prestwick airport have made a final farewell flypast of Scotland.

Royal Navy Sea Kings have been involved in thousands of rescues since the first unit was established 44 years ago. The Westland WS-61 Sea King is a British licence-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter of the same name but differs considerably from the American version, with Rolls-Royce Gnome engines.

The service has been replaced by a civilian team at Prestwick Airport on January 1, bringing an end to military search and rescue in Scotland.

To mark the occasion, two helicopters in formation flew up Loch Lomond, passing over Tyndrum and then through Glen Coe and over Ben Nevis (where they have been involved in a number of dramatic rescues).

The crews then followed the west coast down to Oban before flying over Inverlochlarig, Stirling, Edinburgh, Ayr and finally Troon, finishing at about 2.30pm

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Tam O'Ranter
January 2016

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