Corgi AA27001 1/72 Scale Westland Puma Helicopter HC Mk.1 XW219 230 Sqn RAF Benson, - November 2009
The Puma HC-1 is a twin engine medium sized transport and utility helicopter, filling a useful gap between the smaller Lynx and larger Chinook and Merlin fleets. Despite entering service in the early 1970s, the Pumas have not gone through the same various stages of development as other similar machines such as the Lynx, instead retaining their original designation of HC Mk.1. Along with the rest of the RAF's Puma fleet at RAF Benson in Oxfordshire, 230 Squadron has operated the Puma HC Mk.1 since the early 1970s.
Flying extensively over Northern Ireland, as well as brief detachments to the Balkans, 230 Squadron left the province in 2009 to move to its new home at RAF Benson. While in Northern Ireland the Pumas gave excellent service proving to be a reliable and capable transport helicopter.
Today, the Pumas assist in training exercises in the UK, but are at a state of readiness to depart to any theatre where they are needed. 230 Squadron's emblem features a tiger, commemorating their service in Malaya, resulting in some interesting tiger motifs and schemes being applied to their aircraft.