One of the last photoshoots with the legendary Sea King Search and Rescue helicopter and crew before it was retired after 30 years of service. During 2015, HMS Gannet was the busiest search and rescue flight in the UK, completing more than 300 rescues. The unit also holds the record for the most rescues in one year, with 447 rescues around the country in 2009. The HMS Gannet flight was known by its call sign “Navy 177”, which changed to “Rescue 177” after being “tasked” to a job. Royal Navy Sea Kings have been involved in thousands of rescues since the first unit was established 44 years ago.
“One moment I was on the deck, the next I’m sitting in the doorway of a Sea King helicopter”.
Excerpt From Canon Professional Network published July 2015. Clive’s next shoot with the RNLI Islay lifeboat crew saw him take to the skies with The Royal Navy HMS Gannet Search and Rescue Sea King helicopter that provides cover for the North of England and Scotland. “It’s one of the last times someone will be able to take photos like this, as the Sea King is about to leave active service. So I was thrilled to have the opportunity to shoot with them on exercise,” he says. With the RNLI crew safely on board the Sea King, it was Clive’s turn to get winched. “One moment I was on the deck, the next I’m sitting in the doorway of this Sea King helicopter. It was pretty amazing. Once I’d got myself settled we set off at some speed, circling the lifeboat. I asked if I could get a shot of the lifeboat from above and we went into a stationary position so it could pass right underneath us at 26 knots. It was an experience I will never forget and humbling to think what an incredible job these crews do on a day to day basis”.