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Went on a tour of RNAS Culdrose today (guess where I'm on holiday!) - it was great to be able to see behind the scenes at a live Naval Air Station, even if we were mostly confined to the coach. Although August is their quiet time, there was a fair amount of flying going on:

  • Merlin Mk1
  • Sea King Mk7
  • Sea King SAR Mk5
  • King Air Avenger

We saw into most hangers including one full of shiny black Hawk T1s! All lined up with engineers fiddling with stuff.

Saw plenty of Sea Kings being serviced as well.

Was nice to see a handful of retired Sea Harriers that they use for aircraft deck handling practice - they fire them up & taxi around as well as having the guys push & pull them with tractors.

Tour guide was very knowledgable and we also had a more detailed tour of the base fire station including the kids having a go with the hoses on the tenders - one's remote controlled via a joystick in the cab and the other's a bl**dy great jet on the roof!

Am staying between Truro & Falmouth and we see the grey & red SAR Sea Kings overhead a lot - one buzzed by overhead at breakfast time (my camera was inside unfortunately!) and I've just heard one now overhead (pitch black though).

Haven't downloaded my photos from today yet but if I get any decent ones I'll post them.

£30 for a family ticket - worth it IMO. For more info see http://www.fleetairarm.com/culdrose-air-station.aspx

Cheers,

Andrew

p.s. can't believe they're privatising SAR soon :-(

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Being a local to Culdrose is a fantastic experience, done to tour a few times myself as well as the annual air day. Those sea kings and merlins are always around the bay down at penzance & marazion.

Also if you interested to know, hasegawa just released a kit of those Sea King SAR Mk5's, the actual Culdrose based sea king, which I find fantastic. 1/48 scale mind you, its a beast.

While you down this way, if curious I can also point you in the right direction for any model shops if required.

Sounds like you had a fantastic day out.

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That sounds really cool. I'll be down there in late September for a few days. Not sure I'll have time for a station tour but I might manage a half hour stop off at the viewing area. Is there likely to be much activity on a weekday in late September?

I wouldn't mind knowing about any model shops in Cornwall just in case I get the chance to call into one.

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There is usually actively most days at Culdrose, you should at least get to see some of the choppers. September you should be fine.

As for model shops, you best bet is T7 models in Truro. They are the only specialist kit retailer in the county. Hasegawa, airfix revell trumpeter etc.

http://www.t7models.com/

There is two toy masters with good stock in Truro and hayle. Just the revell and airfix stuff with these.

Trago mills in liskard on the A38 also stocks revell and airfix at discounted prices so worth checking them out. They also have a good supply of books too.

Hope this helps

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Thanks chaps. Sought out Imperial Models after a quick web search only to find it was closed on Mondays!! A quick peer through the window revealed quite a bit of R/C stuff (that I'm not interested) and quite a bit of plastic kits, with some nicely done models in the window. We're back to Truro on Tuesday so will definitely check out T7 models.

Cheers,

Andrew

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Imperial is mostly r/c stuff, they do keep some plastic kits but they are all pretty much 2nd hand and over priced I found :(.

T7 models is a new shop only just opened this month.

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You can get a tour of Culdrose! I can see the old TR getting a good run out sooner rather than later!

Martin

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I was at Culdrose on the same tour last week as well. Had a great time. Mary was our guide and she was very knowledgeable indeed. Saw a Wessex at the back of a hangar which was nice to see and we also did the tour of the fire station whereupon some youngsters could sit in a Harrier cockpit. Well worth the money and the cafe is good too, cheeseburger and chips was about four and half quid which is darn good for Cornwall.

That Wessex was moved the other day. I was grabbing a breakfast at McDonalds in Fraddon and it went past on a low-loader in convoy with its nose on another truck followed by a grey Seaking. Any thoughts as to where it was going. I hope it was RNAS Yeovilton for preservation. Anyone know anything?

This is the aircraft, has stubby little rotors for instructional use I guess as it was an instructional airframe I gather. http://www.abpic.co.uk/photo/1303760/

Edited by HP42

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You can get a tour of Culdrose! I can see the old TR getting a good run out sooner rather than later!

Martin

Best to ring in advance to book a place. You need to take ID and you get your mugshot taken, all fair enough as you're on a military base. I try and go whenever I'm down there. They run tours until October. Mary was our tour guide and she was really great to listen to. Great experience and well worth a visit.

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