Hopefully this is the last piece on the Sea King Party after the piece on the news yesterday. At lease we got an answer of sorts.
From the BBC website ” The cancellation of a party marking the retirement of Sea King helicopters has been met with anger.
Members of 202 Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth organised the Elgin celebration so personnel and the local community could say a joint farewell.
The Sea Kings will be mothballed next month and replaced with helicopters run by the private sector.
The RAF said concerns about election rules were behind the decision to cancel the celebration. Purdah rules apply !
Purdah is the pre-election period in the United Kingdom, specifically the time between an announced election and the final election results. The time period prevents central and local government from making announcements about any new or controversial government initiatives (such as modernisation initiatives or administrative and legislative changes) which could be seen to be advantageous to any candidates or parties in the forthcoming election. Where actual advantage to candidates is proven in law based on precedent cases to have been given this amounts to a breach of Section 2 of the Local Government Act 1986.
At its weakest, the time period brings a moral commitment for executive officers not unless ordered by elected representatives to enter into any transactions or carry out any works which would conflict with the stated intentional commitments (manifesto) of the cabinet or shadow cabinet and possibly other candidates.
It is now looking at alternatives.
The Sea Kings at Lossiemouth have been used for more than four decades.
They will be taken out of service next week.
Moray SNP MP Angus Robertson said: “It is a great shame that the Moray community are being denied the opportunity to personally thank personnel.
“There is massive respect from the public in Moray and right across Scotland for the RAF, with the familiar yellow Sea King regularly seen in the air heading to challenging rescues in the North Sea, in the Cairngorms and further afield.”
My opinion is it was really a bit of an own goal by MOD and no doubt now I am not on the MOD party list. Such is life some things have to be said and maybe it may give them a chance to rectify it for the other stations as they leave in the SAR draw down by the military.
I repeat as I have said many times that I wish the new SAR contract all the best for a long safe and successful period of saving lives all over UK. Many of my friends will be working with them and I am sure we will receive a wonderful updated SAR Service with a new modern aircraft that serves us into the future. Hopefully there will be a plan for SAR in the UK for years to come. We do not want to be left with an old aircraft again and little investment in the future in SAR.
The weather was grand and I had a wander to my local Cummingston crags with Pete and Jane it will be one of the last walks before I head to Aberdeen for my next operation on Wednesday. The sun was out and it was definitely Spring in the air, yet more snow is forecast for the mountains. Jane found this incredible stone as we wandered along the beach marvelous to see and made my day after all the hassle, was it worth it?
We will see