HeliOperations News

HeliOperations Takes Ownership of 16 Sea King Helicopters

HeliOperations Takes Ownership of 16 Sea King Helicopters

Posted on 12th Aug 2019 under Equipment, News, Training

Vice Admiral Tony Johnstone-Burt CB OBE, the Master of the Household, was guest of honour at HeliOperations’ Osprey Quay on Thursday 8 August, in his role as Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Dorset. Admiral Johnstone-Burt, accompanied by his wife Rachel, presided over the transfer-of-title of sixteen former-Royal Navy and Royal Air Force Sea King Helicopters from the Head of the Defence Equipment Sales Authority, Commodore Clive Walker, to HeliOperations CEO and former-Royal Navy Sea King pilot Steve Gladston.

In a ceremony attended by former-Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral Sir Alan Massey KCB CBE, and the last Captain of Royal Navy Air Station Portland, Captain John Harvey RN; Commodore Walker handed-over ownership of sixteen of the most iconic aircraft ever operated by the Fleet Air Arm. The much-loved helicopter has recently been retired by the UK Ministry of Defence but has found a new lease of life under the ownership of HeliOperations. HeliOps operates the aircraft in support of United Kingdom’s commitment to train pilots and crewmen of the Federal German Navy under a longstanding inter-governmental arrangement

Admiral Johnstone-Burt, a former-Royal Navy Sea King pilot himself and Commander of Joint Helicopter Command between 2008 and 2011, was given a warm welcome from HeliOperations, almost all of whom are former-Fleet Air Arm colleagues. Mark Deaney, HeliOperations’ Technical Director, commented how delighted the Company was to welcome “Admiral J-B” back to the former-HMS Osprey where he had served as a Lynx pilot, and to share such an important step for HeliOperations as it continued to support military operations from its Dorset heliport.