|Prince William flies multi-million pound RAF Chinook helicopter...and picks up Harry on the way
||[Apr. 17th, 2008|04:26 pm]
Prince William flies multi-million pound RAF Chinook helicopter to cousin's Isle of Wight stag do... and picks up Harry on the way
April 15, 2008
From: Daily Mail
Even for Prince William, getting to his cousin Phillip's stag do at the weekend would have required a tedious seven hour traipse across the country by both road and ferry.
Luckily for the Prince he had just received his 'wings' from the RAF and so had the perfect means of getting to the Isle of Wight bash in double-quick time – he just picked up an RAF Chinook helicopter.
Like a learner driver who has just passed his test the Prince evidently couldn't wait to get his hands on the controls of the huge £10-million machine.
Taking the military helicopter meant that the Prince managed to get from his RAF base at Cranwell, Lincolnshire to the Isle of Wight in just one hour and 20 minutes.
He even had time to swing by and pick up his brother Harry from Woolwich Barracks in London, ensuring they both arrived at Bembridge Airport on the Isle of Wight by 4pm on Friday, ready for the weekend ahead.
An industry source estimated that the trip will have cost several thousand pounds at least.
The Chinook was flown back to base by the co-pilot – leaving William free to indulge in what was reportedly quite a raucous affair.
Flying across water is one of the key tasks that helicopter pilots have to undertake as part of their training and the Prince had been due to complete this task last Monday but he had to meet RAF bosses in London instead.
An RAF spokesman said of the 250-mile flight: "The Prince's training was designed to give him an insight into the many roles of the Royal Air Force.
"Having spent a week under instruction with a Chinook helicopter Squadron Prince William flew a legitimate training sortie which tested his new skills to the limit.
"Flying at low level Prince William piloted the heavy support RAF Chinook helicopter through the busy London flying lanes to a helicopter landing site in Central London before departing the lanes to the South West, making a water crossing and an approach to a civilian airfield routinely used by Chinook Squadrons."
The Prince's instructor said: "Prince William showed natural piloting skills and an ability to pick things up quickly.
"His final flight tested his burgeoning flying skills to the full and he performed very well indeed."
Posted on 15 Apr 2008 by admin