By Dave Taskis
Bell 47G-3B-1 Sioux won the Light Helicopter Competition between Hughes 300 and the Hiller 12E-4 (coming second), the Brantly B-2 a late entrant - in March 1964, to replace the Skeeter. The deal was politically complicated by a need to sell Rolls Royce aero engines to Italy, so the first 50 were supplied by Agusta and remainder from Westland.
First deliveries were from Apr 1965 and initial maintenance difficulties (of these and the Agusta supplied models - which began deliveries in 1964) were largely overcome by July 1965, with final deliveries at the end of 1968. Known as the Clockwork Mouse or Iron Budgie in AAC service. 666 Squadron was the last UK unit to retire its Sioux in Feb 1978, followed by 11 Flight (in Brunei and Hong Kong) in Sep 1978.
|Years||Units||bold : Current base of the Unit|
|1972/77||AAC Flight BATUS|| CFB Suffield|
|1970/75||7 Flt|| RAF Gatow|
|1969/78||16 Flt|| Dhekelia|
|1969/78||657 Squadron||Colchester Kirkee|
|1969/78||665 Squadron||Colchester McMunn|
|1969/77||662 Squadron|| Waterloo Barracks, Münster|
|1969/75||660 Squadron||Long Kesh|
|1969/||Historic Aircraft Flight|| AAC Middle Wallop |
|1967/69||1 Flt|| Detmold|
|??/78||666 Squadron (Volunteers)||AAC Netheravon|
|UNFICYP Flight|| Nicosia (Lefkosia)|