WORKERS in charge of servicing the country’s fleet of Chinooks have named a building after the most famous helicopter.
Boeing, makers of the distinctive helicopers, have refurbished a building at Vector Aerospace, their base of operations in Fareham Road, Gosport.
They have named it Bravo November House, after a Chinook that has been in service since 1978.
The helicopter has seen action in conflicts including the Falklands, Northern Ireland, Iraq and Afghanistan.
David Pitchforth is the managing director of Boeing Defence UK.
He said: ‘This is bringing together lots of people into one facility.
‘We wanted to make sure it stayed on this site.
‘Bravo November was the only Chinook to survive the Atlantic Conveyor incident as part of the Falklands conflict.’
Bravo November had been stationed on the SS Atlantic Conveyor but was on operation when the ship was hit by Exocet missiles and sank in May 1982, losing her other Chinooks onboard.
She has four Distinguished Flying Crosses.
Bravo November House is home to Boeing staff, with the servicing work done in hangars nearby.
There are 130 people employed by Boeing to work on the fleet of 46 Chinooks.
But that may expand further with the introduction of a further 14 helicopters.
Captain David Childs, of the Royal Navy, is the Ministry of Defence Chinook Project Team leader.
He said: ‘I was here in the 1990s as a test pilot, flying over the roofs, and sometimes under the roofs.
‘This building used to be the avionics block, the only building I wasn’t allowed into.
‘What’s brilliant is Boeing run the contract with Vector here – I don’t have to worry about it.’
Mayor of Gosport, Councillor John Beavis and his wife and Mayoress Christine Beavis attended the opening.