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RAF helicopters spotted landing on Southwark Park

Rotherhithe and Bermondsey  residents were startled to see RAF helicopters landing on Southwark Park yesterday evening (Wednesday, August 4) as part of a London-wide training exercise.

The Puma helicopters, which came from the RAF Benson air base in Wiltshire, touched down at about 5.45pm yesterday evening before flying off to the south-east.

A spokesperson for the RAF said: “RAF Puma helicopters from RAF Benson have recently been operating in London area completing essential operational training. Our crews use a variety of Helicopter Landing Sites (HLS) such as Southwark park and training areas around the whole of the UK for training and vary their routes and locations to maximise training benefit and ensure that our crews continue to be ready for global operations.”

These operations include civil exercises like Operation Ruman, a 2017 relief programme for people affected by Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean, and Operation Rescript, part of the UK government’s Covid-19 response.

RAF Benson, where the Puma helicopters came from, is the base for the  Covid Support Force Aviation Task Force- a programme to transport critically ill Covid-19 patients to hospitals.


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