Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 9°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

Video/Gallery: Tour round police helicopter base at Wattisham Airfield

16:28 26 February 2013

A tour of the cold war hanger (Suffolk Branch of the National Police Air Service Hangar Facility) at Wattisham Airfield which is the home of the police helicopter.

A tour of the cold war hanger (Suffolk Branch of the National Police Air Service Hangar Facility) at Wattisham Airfield which is the home of the police helicopter.

Archant

THE boss of Suffolk’s police helicopter has emphasised the service’s importance in tackling crime.

Base manager Julian Bosley was speaking as he gave an exclusive tour round the helicopter facility at Wattisham Airfield.

The county’s helicopter which covers Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and north Essex can be airborne in response to an emergency call in just two minutes.

Sergeant Bosley, 42, said: “We deal with 100 to 150 incidents per month – a wide range of things- reactive stuff, vehicle pursuits, crimes in progress, missing people, people having a crisis.

“We are aware we are noisy, we ask police on the ground and we stay there until they are confident it is secure.

“It costs about £1.25million per year to run the helicopter, staff and engineering costs. I know it costs an awful lot to run a police helicopter but a lot of people are quite proud that Suffolk as a county was able to get funding together to run a helicopter ourselves. It’s a service of reassurance. I always know it makes people ask what’s going on when they see it in the air.

“The east of England was the first set of police forces to move to the National Police Air Service which happened for a combination of things. It’s about efficiency, there’s no doubt, having one aircraft here for the county is not very efficient.”

The team fly the £6million Eurocopter EC135 which carries a range of tools to counter criminals down on the ground.

A thermal imaging camera can detect people in the dark, a separate camera provides coverage in the daytime as well as a rear search light and a powerful PA system.

A former nuclear bunker, dating from the Cold War era, houses the helicopter and its team at the base near Stowmarket.

The base’s personnel include a team of four pilots, seven air observers and a team of engineers.

The Eurocopter can stay airborne for up to two hours and cruises at 120knots (140mph).

Suffolk is protected with a 24-hour helicopter presence since the National Police Air Service took over from Suffolk Constabulary last October.

2 comments

  • Story: "Tour round police helicopter base" Actual: 25 seconds of poor footage shown in the wrong format, of a landing, and no tour!

    Report this comment

    john

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

  • DID I READ THAT WRONG ,,??

    Report this comment

    MIGUEL100

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

John Williams has decided to carve a tree stump on Eastgate Street in Bury St Edmunds.

Not many people would give up 200 hours of their life and ten weeks of work free of charge, but that is exactly what one retired Suffolk teacher is doing after coming across an “ugly” tree stump near his house.

The Suffolk Show 2015 - 
The grand parade.

The Suffolk Show has been a regular fixture on the calendars of generations of families and as this year’s event approaches, we thought we would test your knowledge of shows past and present.

Witham

People are being urged to be vigilant following a spate of burglaries in Witham and Braintree this week.

Emergency services are at the scene. Stock image.

Emergency services were called to a head-on crash in Ixworth Thorpe earlier this afternoon.

Abellio Greater Anglia

Mainline train services running through Manningtree experienced delays of up to 25 minutes this evening.

Holywells Park won a Civic Voice award

Holywells Park in Ipswich was one of just 11 renovation projects to scoop a national award today.

Images taken from drone footage of the River Alde, by David McArthur

Drone pilot David McArthur was “in the right place at the right time” when he shot these scenes over the River Alde last summer.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24