Just over a year ago I designed a poster to celebrate the affiliation with the town of Helston in Cornwall, to the soon to be decommissioned 771 Naval Air Squadron and it's red and grey Sea King helicopters. I and many other people found the impending demise of the squadron to be a very sad thing. The Squadron's work to save lives around the South West coast of the United Kingdom has earned it a very special place in the hearts of the Cornish people and those of the mariners and seafarers who pass that way in their various craft. Many have taken solace in the fact that 771 will come if things should go wrong.
Two days ago a ceremony was held at RNAS Culdrose to officially decommission the Squadron and the helicopters have been sent elsewhere to be scrapped, sold off or turned into interesting sheds. All that is, except one.
XV673 or number (8)27 has been cleaned up and repainted and now sits tethered to the ground at the north western side of the Culdrose airfield as a guardian and fitting memorial to the squadron and the brave personnel who saved the lives of perhaps 2,000 people over 40 years, often putting their own lives in peril.
As from the 23rd March 2016 there will rightly be a perpetual memorial to this great squadron and from this date my Visit Helston poster will have the number 27 on the helicopter to make it relevant to the memorial and the town.
The original poster had the number 17 on it and when I flew with the 771 boys this February, 17 was the number of the cab I flew in. Number 27 was the number on the poster I produced for Culdrose Air Day 2015 and was the cab which performed on the day. It is nice to see these things tie up so neatly.
So, if you buy one of my Visit Helston Posters from my online shop now, it will have the number 27 on it and if you do visit Helston, there she will be. Forever Relevant.
Non Nobis Solum - Not unto us alone.