Questions over low-flying helicopters above St Keverne
11:02am Monday 17th September 2012 in News
Questions have been raised over low-flying helicopters above St Keverne parish, particularly at Dean Quarry near Rosenithon.
St Keverne Parish Council heard from member Anthony Richards that this was happening at night as well as during the day. He claimed a horse rider was almost thrown from her mount due to the noise last week and questioned what would happen if someone was killed.
He also wondered what Culdrose did before it starting using Dean Quarry. Mr Richards said: “There has been a lot of activity. Several people have mentioned it to me. It's been quite a few weeks through the summer.”
However, chairman Russell Peters said: “I do feel it's a very small inconvenience to put up with when you realise what is part of their training.”
Councillor Bill Frisken agreed: “A lot of fishermen are very grateful for these helicopters picking them up in stormy weather . I wouldn't like to say too much.”
Councillor David Lambrick said that while he agreed to some extent, he saw no problem in asking a question about it. He proposed a letter be sent to Culdrose. However, an amendment to this - that a letter not be sent - was approved, with seven councillors in favour that no question was asked.
A spokesperson from RNAS Culdrose told the Packet: “The Royal Navy use Old Dean Quarry in St Keverne as an approved confined area landing site. The location was originally chosen because it is isolated, safe, quiet and not in a built up area.
“Such sites are essential to the safe training of our aircrew before they embark on operations both in the UK and overseas. Practice such as this reduces the risk of something going wrong on an actual mission.”
She added that the Sea King Helicopters of 771 Squadron particularly needed to practice landings in a confined area, in preparation for their search and rescue duties - many of which involved reaching people stranded in inaccessible and restricted areas around the Cornish coast. Merlin helicopters also used the site to practice 'take offs' and 'landings,' to prepare for operations on the frontline.