£30k bid to bring Moray’s Sea King home is launched

XV592 will be a permanent resident in Moray (pic: James Biggadike)
XV592 will be a permanent resident in Moray (pic: James Biggadike)

THE GROUP BEHIND a successful campaign to retain a Sea King SAR helicopter in Moray has launched a new campaign – to pay for it.

Morayvia last week revealed that months of painstaking work had resulted in the Ministry of Defence agreeing to sell them one of the iconic aircraft that had been taken to the heart of the local community.

Two Sea King’s had operated from RAF Lossiemouth until they became the first to be withdrawn from service in April. Eventually all military SAR helicopters will be replaces throughout the UK by a new civilian service.

When it became known that the Sea King was to vanish from the Moray skyline the Moray public rallied behind the bid by Morayvia, who are behind a science and technology centre that has already secured several aircraft for permanent exhibition – including the last remaining Nimrod.

A spokesman for the group said: “We are delighted to say that arrangements are now well advanced to bring XV592 to Moray, where it will form the centrepiece of a tribute to the work of these aircraft and their crews over so many years.

“However, it was always clear that this would be an expensive project and now we have to find the funding to cover the purchase, transportation and secure setting for Moray’s Sea King.”

Last night the group launched a new crowdfunding website, offering people the chance to pledge as little as £10 towards the £30,000 required to establish the Sea King in Moray.

“Everyone who pledges their hard earned cash to the project will become a member of our Moray Sea King Saviours Club (MSKSC) and as such will be entitled to discounts on visits to the Sea King in future,” the spokesman said.

He added: “For those who feel able to contribute a little more, we have a number of offers – the top one being a fantastic framed image of the Sea King, signed by former members of the crew that flew the last aircraft out of Lossiemouth on April 1.

“That would make a fantastic showpiece on the reception wall of any local business – there are only 12 of these being produced so will prove to be a highly prized exhibit for any company.”

Further details on how to take part in the crowdfunding effort can be found at http://igg.me/at/saveaseaking.