To celebrate this significant diamond milestone, an appeal is being made to both former Royal Navy search and rescue crew members, as well as those who have been rescued by one of the Senior Service helicopters, to come forward with their stories.
Over the six decades, Royal Navy search and rescue has, at some time, operated out of a total of 11 bases, eight of them now either decommissioned or no longer in RN hands. They are:
• RNAS Eglinton/HMS Gannet near Londonderry, Northern Ireland
• RNAS Ford/HMS Peregrine near Littlehampton in Sussex
• RNAS Brawdy/HMS Goldcrest in SW Wales near Haverfordwest
• RNAS Gosport/HMS Siskin in Hampshire
• RNAS Lee-on-Solent/HMS Daedalus in Hampshire
• RNAS Portland/HMS Osprey in Portland Harbour, Dorset
• RNAS Culdrose/HMS Seahawk in Helston, Cornwall
• RNAS Yeovilton/HMS Heron in Somerset
• RNAS Lossiemouth/HMS Fulmar near Elgin in north east Scotland
• RNAS Anthorn/HMS Nuthatch on the Solway Coast in Cumbria
• RNAS Prestwick/HMS Gannet in Ayrshire
Of the above, Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose and HMS Gannet in Prestwick continue to operate this lifesaving service – together carrying out well over 500 sorties a year to people in distress.
Were you rescued in the last 60 years by one of the Royal Navy’s helicopters? Do you know someone who was and who may like to tell their story? Or, alternatively, are you a former crew member of one of the RN search and rescue squadrons with tales to tell?
The Royal Navy would love to hear all about your memories.
If you would like to share your experiences, please email your story to firstname.lastname@example.org including your name and contact details, as well as when you served or were rescued. Please do not send pictures, though letting us know if you have any available would be much appreciated. Alternatively send your memories to RN SAR 60, 771 NAS, RNAS Culdrose, Helston, Cornwall, TR12 7RH.