Saturday, 5 May 2012

Real live Pumas in Ilford!

Hundreds attend Ilford Territorial Army Centre open day to admire the Puma Helicopters.  The helicopters will provide air support during the Olympics and the site was being used for a trial run.

Wing Commander Anderson with Hannah and Sophia Chowdhry

Staff at the Territorial Army Centre made visitors feel very welcome.

Puma Helicopters can carry 16 airmen we were told.

Airmen allowed visitors to try on their specialised safety helmets.

Over 90 extra military personnel will be deployed at Ilford TAC during the Olympics.

Local Squadrons joined the Airman in making the day a special one for visitors.

Ilford is only 7 miles away form Stratford, making it the most important strategic site and nearest response base.

The helicopters make a large noise on lift-off, but rise quickly to avoid excessive noise pollution.

Airmen described the use of the helicopter whilst sharing time with local residents.

Children and adults experienced the reality of the cramped space in war helicopters.

Few luxuries are provided within the Puma's.

Many families from neighbour SS Peter's and Paul's School visited the base.

Children struggled with the steps to the helicopter but enjoyed the adventure nevertheless.

Around 90 Airstaff will be deployed at the base during the Olympics.  Parents dropping or picking children to/from school are advised to park further away to avoid congestion on the road.

Children and young people got to hear first hand what life in the military was like.

There is always time for fun and frolics!

This driver seems a little young...

The fuel carrier bonnet is higher that the rather tall Airman before it, illustrating how large the vehicle is.  The tyres were over 1m high.

In a war zone a gunner would be standing in the ceiling cavity.

Again the internal furniture is sparse, military vehicles are made with practical design philosophy.

Looks like I ma taking the picture form a small hill ay...

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