RAF Shawbury flight school takes delivery of new helicopter
Chiefs at RAF Shawbury have taken delivery of a new helicopter at its state-of-the-art training school.
The Jupiter helicopter made by Airbus is the first of five which will soon be airborne in the Shropshire skies as part of a programme to modernise pilot training.
Station Commander and Commandant of No. 1 Flying Training School Group Capt Chris Mullen was on the flight line to welcome the brand new brand-new Airbus H145 to the air base.
It will be an addition to the fleet and will shortly be taking to the skies following checks and transfer to the military register to deliver world-leading training as part of the UK Military Flying Training System (UKMFTS).
“This helicopter is the first of an additional four Jupiter helicopters which will be delivered following the Strategic Defence and Security Review 2015," said Capt Chris Mullen.
"We now have the modern aircraft and technology that defence needs for the future, and the opportunity to fully exploit this potential.
"The investment made in the rotary element of the UKMFTS programme will ensure that the frontline receives the trained air crew that it needs and will enable RAF Shawbury to remain one of the main operating bases for at least the next 25 years, securing the future of the unit in Shropshire."
He was joined at the arrival of the aircraft at Shropshire's RAF Shawbury by Airbus Helicopters UK managing director Colin James and Ascent Flight managing director Tim James.
The ambitious upgrade programme has seen the modernisation and transformation of the national military flying training system.
The enterprise is being delivered in partnership between the MOD and training provider Ascent Flight Training, Airbus UK, Lockheed Martin, Babcock International and Canadian aviation technology company CAE.
The Duke of Cambridge trained to fly at the base which as the RAF's oldest training school was formed in 1919.
Earlier this year state-of-the-art training facilities were unveiled at the site's new Duke of Cambridge Building.
While the name of the training centre was also changed from Defence Helicopter Flying School to No 1 Flying Training School.