Del'd: 155 - 1969 to present


When an initial order for 60 Sea King HAS.1s was placed with Westland Aircraft Ltd by the UK Ministry of Aviation on behalf of the RN for £24 million in late 1966, it was the largest order for helicopters ever placed with a British company.
Approx 112 HAS type were in service by Oct 2003. First Westland built airframe was c/n WA630 (XV642) which flew on 7 May 1969 from Yeovil. At least 8 marks for the Royal Navy since that date, either as new build or rework on existing airframes.
The Sea King HAS.1 retained the Sikorsky H-3 watertight hull, 5 bladed all metal main rotor and fixed tail wheel. Wessex HAS.3 radar/sonar and UK Gnome H.1400 engines. Initial production was of the HAS.1, 56 of which were delivered to the Royal Navy, (remaining 4 were the development machines).
By 1974, the HAS.2 was designed. New build HAS.2 with improved Gnome H.1400-1 engines, increased fuel capacity, a 6 bladed tail rotor and air intake deflectors/filters. Order for 13 in Nov 1974 and 8 more in 1976. Internal improvements include a Marconi Acoustic Processing & Display suite. XZ570 ff 18 Jun 1976, all delivered by Oct 1979. The remaining 48 HAS.1s were upgraded at RNAY Fleetlands, and NASU Culdrose and known as HAS.2A; All front line Sea Kings were at HAS.2/2A standard by Jul 1978.
The Sea King HAS.5 was developed from the HAS.2, beginning in Jan 1979 with major avionics update and introduced a Magnetic Anomaly Detector (MAD) housed in the starboard undercarriage sponson and winched away from the airframe for operations. f/f 14 Aug 1980, first 2 handed to RN on 2 Oct 1980. From 1980, 30 (new) Sea King HAS.5 were built with a Thorn-EMI (MEL) Sea Searcher radar, Plessey dipping sonar, Racal Orange Crop ESM, Jezebel passive sonobuoys and composite rotors to replace original all-metal ones. 35 HAS.2A conversions were rebuilt as HAS.5 in early 1980s.
Following the critical lack of an airborne radar picket during the Falklands campaign of 1982, the folly of relying on RAF Shackleton AEW.2s for out-of-theatre operations, after the 1978 retirement of the carrier-based Gannet AEW.3 by HM Treasury-led cuts was evident.  Westland rushed two HAS.2A development airframes through an intensive programme between May and Aug 1982 to fit the Thorn-EMI Searchwater radar (as in the Nimrod) into an air-pressured, external, swivelled Kevlar housing (known as a dustbin) on the starboard side of the airframe, Cossor Jubilee Guardsman electonic warfare system was fitted and the internal observer stations were updated. The first airframe was available at the end of 1982. 10 Sea King HAS.2s were converted into AEW.2As.
The Sea King HAS.6 (six new and 69 conversions from 1990, with Westland kits) operated from 1989 and feature improved airframe and tranmission, GEC-Marconi 2069 dipping sonar, further improved signal processing, internal-mount MAD, revised Racal Orange Reaper ESM and Gnome H1400-2 engines. Includes the GEC-Marconi AD3400 VHF/UHF secure speech radio.  The HAS.6 was also the last version of Sea King to be used in the anti-submarine role, following its withdrawal from the front line in 2004.  By Aug 2004, the Royal Navy had no effective, primary role anti-submarine helicopter, while the Merlin remained non-operational and is still grounded.
9 Sea King AEW.2As have been converted to AEW.7 standard with Gnome H1400-2 engines, renamed Sea King ASaC.7 and introduced in 2001.
Some low flying hours Sea King HAS.6s are having their anti-submarine sensors and signal processing stations removed to function in the main role of Commando assault with a secondary Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD). The Sea King HAS.6C was converted at DARA Fleetlands during 2004 and retains its main wheel sponsons but the undercarriage is fixed in the lowered position and an improved defensive package fitted. The first of type were issued in mid 2004.

Sep14, there are 7 Sea Kings for breaking up at the back of Arlington railway workshops at Eastleigh Hants with a load more to arrive

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Royal Navy SAR Sea Kings Leave Culdrose, 12-Apr-16 : Royal Navy last three SAR Sea King flew from RNAS Culdrose base to HMS Sultan in Gosport. 771 Naval Air Squadron was formally decommissioned at the end of March and their tasks assigned to civilians

Royal Navy Scotland SAR Final Farewell Fly-Past, 11-Jan-16 : Royal Navy Search and Rescue (SAR) Flight, HMS Gannet, are set to say “so-long Scotland” with a final farewell fly-past.

771 Naval Air Squadron Farewell Flight, 21-May-15 : Royal Navy 771 Naval Air Squadron celebrates their 76th birthday with a Sea King formation around the west coast of Cornwall. Will hand over its SAR duties at the end of the year

Royal Navy Give SAR Sea King Final MOT, 13-Feb-15 : Royal Navy Reservists from RNAS Culdrose have started the very last ever “Flying-MOT” scheduled maintenance of a Sea King Mk 5 before the aircraft is retired from service next year.

Sea King move heralds major lifesaving exhibition, 29-Feb-12 : With just that one and a half inches to spare – 38 millimetres if you prefer metric – a specially-painted Sea King was squeezed into Falmouth’s National Maritime Museum ahead of a major exhibition celebrating the deeds of those who risk their lives so others may live.

Dual-Input Christie Matrix StIM Projectors for helicopter training, 17-Nov-11 : The full flight simulation system at Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Culdrose in the UK, where training facilities for the RN Sea King helicopters are based, has upgraded its visual system technology with the new Christie Matrix StIM™ WUXGA DLP® LED projectors. The upgrade dramatically advances the capabilities of their training and simulation facilities, allowing them to support normal visual operation as well as stimulation of aircrew Night Vision Goggles (NVG) simultaneously.

Sea Kings home in UK after four-week transport operation, 02-Nov-11 : Sea King air and ground crews have completed the herculean task of moving their squadrons home from Afghanistan.


YearsUnitsbold : Current base of the Unit
2015/16848 NAS hc.4RNAS Yeovilton
2015/    Palembang Flight asac.7 RNAS Culdrose
2014/    Normandy Flight asac.7 RNAS Culdrose
2014/    Okinawa Flight asac.7 RNAS Culdrose
2006/15857 NAS asac.7RNAS Culdrose
AF Camp Bastion
RNAS Culdrose
AF Camp Bastion
RNAS Culdrose
2006/14854 NAS asac.7RNAS Culdrose
RAF Northolt
AF Camp Bastion
RNAS Culdrose
2002/    849 NAS asac.7 RNAS Culdrose
2001/16HMS Gannet SAR FlightPrestwick
1995/13848 NAS hc.4RNAS Yeovilton
1992/00814 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1992/98706 NASRNAS Culdrose
1990/91848 NAS hc.4RNAS Yeovilton
1989/03820 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1989/01810 NASRNAS Culdrose
1989/01819 NASPrestwick
1988/95772 NAS hc.4Portland
1988/93826 NASBoscombe Down
RNAS Culdrose
1988/89824 NASPrestwick
1987/16771 NAS Prestwick
RNAS Culdrose
1985/93819 NASPrestwick
1984/15845 NAS hc.4RAF Benson
AF Kandahar
AF Kandahar
IQ Basrah International Airport
RNAS Yeovilton
RNAS Yeovilton
HR Divulje Barracks
RNAS Yeovilton
SA Hafr Al-Batin / King Khalid Military City
RNAS Yeovilton
1984/03849 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1983/95707 NAS hc.4Aldergrove
RNAS Yeovilton
1983/90810 NASRNAS Culdrose
1982/92814 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1982/84824 NASRNAS Culdrose
GI RAF Gibraltar
Port San Carlos
RNAS Culdrose
1982825 NASRNAS Culdrose
Port San Carlos
1981/98706 NASRNAS Culdrose
1981/93826 NASBoscombe Down
RNAS Culdrose
RNAS Culdrose
1980/90820 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1979/13846 NAS hc.4RNAS Yeovilton
AF Kandahar
IQ Basrah International Airport
RNAS Yeovilton
QA Doha / Ad Dawhah
RNAS Yeovilton
CY Dhekelia
RNAS Yeovilton
Old House Creek
Pollock's Passage
Port Stanley
RNAS Yeovilton
1978/90706 NASRNAS Culdrose
1977/85819 NASPrestwick
1977/83824 NASRNAS Culdrose
GI RAF Gibraltar
Port San Carlos
RNAS Culdrose
1977/82814 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1977/80820 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1976/83826 NASRNAS Culdrose
RNAS Culdrose
1973/77814 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1973/75737 NASPortland
1972/77820 NAS RNAS Culdrose
1971/78819 NASPrestwick
RNAS Culdrose
AAC Ballykelly
1970/78706 NASRNAS Culdrose
1970/77824 NASRNAS Culdrose
1970/76826 NASRNAS Culdrose
SG Tengah Air Base
RNAS Culdrose
1969/70700 NASRNAS Culdrose

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