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Suffolk MP flies Apache helicopter across constituency during military visit

PUBLISHED: 11:35 31 July 2020 | UPDATED: 11:35 31 July 2020

Jo Churchill, Bury St Edmunds MP, flew an Apache helicopter across her constituency this week as part of a visit to Wattisham air base. Picture: CAPT IAN MACLENNAN ACC

Jo Churchill, Bury St Edmunds MP, flew an Apache helicopter across her constituency this week as part of a visit to Wattisham air base. Picture: CAPT IAN MACLENNAN ACC

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The duties of an MP don’t usually include flying an Apache helicopter, but Jo Churchill took one for a spin across her constituency this week.

Ms Churchill was accompanied by a flying instructor on her Apache helicopter flight across her constituency of Bury St Edmunds. Picture: CAPT IAN MACLENNAN ACCMs Churchill was accompanied by a flying instructor on her Apache helicopter flight across her constituency of Bury St Edmunds. Picture: CAPT IAN MACLENNAN ACC

The Bury St Edmunds MP has long supported the armed forces and she paid a visit to Wattisham air base earlier this week to understand the importance of the Apache helicopter in defence of the nation.

The visit, on Tuesday, July 28, included a guided tour of the base after meeting with commander of the station Colonel Paul Hayhurst, current aircrew and senior staff members where they discussed the military operation at the base and future plans for investment.

After a briefing from members of the 4 Regiment Army Air corps Ms Churchill flew an Apache across her constituency under the watchful eye of an instructor.

Following the flight she said: “It was an amazing experience to fly one of our iconic Apache helicopters across the constituency and to meet the men and women who keep these helicopters operational.

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“Wattisham Airfield is an integral part of our local community and I was pleased with the update from the Station Commander regarding its long-term future.

“During the visit I was reminded once again of our Armed Forces dedication and professionalism and thanked our service personnel for their hard work.”

Colonel Payhurst added: “It was a pleasure hosting Jo Churchill and a great chance for our service personnel to meet our constituent’s MP.

“At Wattisham Flying Station, we very much value the importance of remaining connected to our local population and value enormously the support we receive from them.

“We look forward to embracing similar opportunities in the future.”

MORE: Apache helicopters in two near-misses with light aircraft over Essex


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