Helicopters stop at estate on farewell tour

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AFTER 41 years of active service in the Royal Navy, the world-leading Westland Lynx helicopter is being decommissioned.

As part of a final farewell tour, three Lynxs came to Goodwood Aerodrome for a flying visit last weekend.

People at the estate witnessed the flypast, which took place after a short stay and greeting from the pilots.

The Westland Lynx started its career in 1971, first flying from Yeovil in Somerset.

The helicopters were prolific during the Falklands War in the early eighties, before being deployed to Beirut, the Persian Gulf, Iraq, Sierra Leone, Northern Ireland and Somalia.

During more peaceful commitments, several Lynxs were used as part of the London 2012 Olympic security operation.

The Lynx has been phased out since 2014, with the steady introduction of the new Leonardo Wildcat HMA.2, which is now widely used by the Naval Air Squadron.

Goodwood control tower’s Tim Constance said: ‘The three Westland Lynx’s arrived at Goodwood from Yeovilton.

‘The exercise was conducted as an opportunity for those in the industry to say goodbye to the aircraft and to provide some of the younger pilots with some fantastic navigation practise.

‘We are fortunate to receive many visits from the military, such as the Army, who have brought Apaches from Wattisham and the RAF, who have dropped in to refuel their Pumas.’