Oxford URNU Officer Cadets visit 845 Naval Air Squadron

On 14 Feb 18 members of the Oxford URNU visited the 845 'Junglies' Squadron based at RNAS Yeovilton and flew in a Mk3 Merlin helicopter.

845 Naval Air Squadron is part of the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm and is one of 3 squadrons that form the Commando Helicopter Force (CHF), it is a specialist amphibious Unit operating the Merlin HC3/HC3A helicopter providing troop transport and load lifting support to the Royal Marines.

The Officer Cadets (OCdts) were given a presentation by the Ops Officer Lt Olly Everett RN detailing the role of the Squadron, the CHF, recent operations and the future role of the Unit.

During the presentation the OCdts asked many questions about the Fleet Air Arm and the opportunities available as a pilot in the RN.

After a safety brief, including in-flight emergency procedures, in the cargo bay of one of the Merlins in the hangar the OCdts went for a fantastic curry lunch in the impressive Wardroom at HMS Heron.

The OCdts are very grateful to the staff of 845 who made their experience so informative and enjoyable, the flight was amazing.

SLt Cate Moore

After lunch and a slight delay imposed by the Met Office, the OCdts donned helmets and visors to experience a flight in one of the Merlin HC3 helicopters with Lt Everett RN, Lt Howie RN, PO Holden and Sgt Thomson of 845 Naval Air Squadron.

Each OCdt had the opportunity to venture onto the open rear loading ramp mid-flight secured to a dispatcher strap – not something you would normally be able to experience in the civilian world!

SLt Cate Moore, Oxford URNU, said: "The OCdts are very grateful to the staff of 845 who made their experience so informative and enjoyable, the flight was amazing."

Lieutenant Will Jones RN, Commanding Officer of the Oxford URNU said: "The visit was a great opportunity for the Unit members to find out about the Commando Helicopter Force and to experience firsthand what it's like to fly with the Fleet Air Arm."

The Oxford URNU members that took part were: Lt Will Jones RN, CPO Gary Maskell, SLt Cate Moore, OCdt Claire Evans, OCdt Luke Harris, OCdt Tom Murphy and OCdt Amy O’Regan.

Words by: SLt Cate Moore, Oxford URNU.