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Old 18th Dec 2017, 00:50   #281 (permalink)
 
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This man's unbelievable!

TF
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Old 18th Dec 2017, 11:10   #282 (permalink)
 
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Let's put a perspective on this.
NPAS was set up with the best intentions and 'most' of the board chipped in to make it a success.

But within a very short period it was apparent it wasn't going to work for two primary reasons.
The maths didn't make sense. A £15 million pound saving was required and this was from an an existing service which couldn't sustain such a hit. The politicains target was always wide of the mark.
NPAS is led by someone who has little or no understanding of an airforce and the job it is designed to do.
ALL the problems (allegedly) come from the Director of NPAS. He keeps the PCC and the CC of West Yorks in the dark using smoke and mirrors......and voila, they are where they are today.
To make an airforce work, the controlling authority need to understand - availability, resources, staffing, training, running costs - and that's just the aviation side!
He has ZERO understanding of that. [No problem - draft in someone who does. Enter - director of aviation]. What has he done?

Two people run NPAS, one is a cop and the other a pilot - one thinks he knows everything and runs around doing all the wrong things and making all the wrong decisions and the other actually knows everything but hears nothing, sees nothing and speaks nothing.

Most forces have picked up on this and are now factoring this into their daily ops. They simply circumvent NPAS as a matter of course. I have spoken to many of them. NPAS is becoming insignificant from the bobby on the beat's perspective.

Maybe this is what will shape the NPAS of the future - A strategic response vehicle only.
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Old 18th Dec 2017, 15:46   #283 (permalink)
 
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Sadly TC, I think you have summarised it quite succinctly!

TF
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Old 19th Dec 2017, 07:57   #284 (permalink)
 
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RTL
Part of the point here is that I was expecting a contrary viewpoint on my observation.
Anyone that pops in and out of an operation can only get a flavour, a drift, of what might be going on. A difference here is that you are recounting the here and now of your unit (wherever that is) and not necessarily all of NPAS. What I was reflecting was an opinion of 1990s police air support based on information from all of the contingent parts of the NW Police air operations and others besides, subject to the usual caveat about what I might be told as an equal and later as an outsider journalist. The differences between pre and post retirement were very obvious in some quarters - but not all.
I can still have ‘those’ conversations with many (on the unspoken assumption that it stays in my head until second sourced).
There is no set thing called police air support and internationally there are massive differences in operational expectation.
I just cannot yet work out which National model NPAS favours or thinks it has to follow. It certainly is not what was planned or pronounced 5 years ago or what was around 5 years ago.
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Old 19th Dec 2017, 09:45   #285 (permalink)
 
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For the pilots and crews, it is what it is. Like any organisation, the workers do what the managers tell them to. Is it better or worse now? From the coal face...... It doesn’t really matter!! I left in 2010, I talk to old sweats and what they tell you in private vs public are 2 different stories.

However

I would go back tomorrow if the circumstances were right.

The military has changed beyond recognition, but it’s still popular. As are all other emergency services jobs. NPAS is not exclusive in how managers are selected
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Old 19th Dec 2017, 17:45   #286 (permalink)
 
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A little dicky bird told me, that, for a period of time last Wednesday, there were only 3 aircraft available for the whole of England and Wales!
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Old 19th Dec 2017, 23:30   #287 (permalink)
 
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Here's the answer!

http://helihub.com/2017/12/19/npas-confirms-new-london-area-base/

Quote:
With full planning permission from Epping Forest District Council now in place, the National Police Air Service (NPAS) will soon start building works on a purpose built airbase at North Weald Airfield in Essex. The new base will replace their existing facility at Lippitts Hill 16 miles away and form part of their national network of 15 bases providing air support to the 46 police forces of England and Wales.

Two police helicopters and a police aeroplane will regularly fly out of this new airbase, which will operate 24/7 and primarily serve London and the South East along with support from additional NPAS airbases at nearby Boreham Airfield, Redhill Aerodrome in Surrey and (RAF) Benson in Oxfordshire. Crews in these aircraft will be regularly supporting police colleagues on the ground to find missing people and search for suspects. They also frequently provide an aerial view to support local police to ensure crowd safety at major events and support police forces to bring many other ‘crimes in action’ to an end, keeping local communities safe.

Paul Marrion, South East Assistant Operations Director for the National Police Air, said:
“We are delighted to be able to build our new bespoke airbase at North Weald airfield. This decision will ensure that we can continue to support police forces across London and the South East in their efforts to protect people and property and to keep communities safe.

“Police air support is a vital tool available to police forces. Flying at average speeds of 138mph, searching for missing people or suspects by air is twenty times faster than other options and saves local police valuable time when it matters.”

Assets and Economic Development Portfolio Holder Councillor Anne Grigg said:
“North Weald Airfield has a long standing history of protecting our community since opening as an airfield in the 1st World War, and becoming a Battle of Britain airfield in the 2nd World War, providing a home to spitfires and hurricanes.

In later years the airfield expanded in to the jet age of the 1950’s and in recent times providing a base to vital services and welcoming aircrafts from all over the world.

The addition of the National Police Air Service is an exciting opportunity which will allow the vital service to carry out their much needed work, ensuring residents safety, which is our top priority.
They will be joining a range of aviation tenants at the airfield including The Essex and Herts Air Ambulance who have been operating successfully for several years.

I am proud of the contribution our airfield has made over the years and look forward to seeing this grow welcoming such important and valuable services.”

Work will begin on the base in January and is expected to be complete by November 2018.
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 15:58   #288 (permalink)
 
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The plans and other material can be found on the Epping Forest District Council Planning pages under the reference EPF/2735/17.

Basically the structure is similar to that built at Doncaster, maybe a little smaller. Oddly it only has a jet fuel facility bearing mind it is supposed to be flying the piston fixed wing. On the positive side of that the airfield has plentiful mogas bowsers though available daylight hours only [currently until 7pm].

The press release from NPAS has an error in that it quotes 16 miles from Lippitts Hill to North Weald. I guess North Weald is 16 miles from central London.... where Lippitts Hill was nearer 12 miles and therefore about 5 from North Weald.
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 16:32   #289 (permalink)
 
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The press release sounds very positive, but I fail to see how the new base can possibly address the the failings of NPAS in bridging the coverage gap to aid officers under pressure caused by reducing from over 30 aircraft to well under 20. It seems that the objective of providing "Support" to operations is really only aimed at pre planned ops. Pity that!

TF
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 17:31   #290 (permalink)
 
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Maybe we should just accept that the "new model" of Air Support, is degraded in much the same way as almost all other forms of Police work.

No shortage of money for new offices and pay for senior ranks, but fewer people out on the street actually doing Police work.
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 22:16   #291 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
The press release sounds very positive,
They always do.
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 22:19   #292 (permalink)
 
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Nice to see someone still has a sense of humor
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 22:24   #293 (permalink)
 
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Will this new facility be anything like the one they had at Warton?

Certainly sounds like the same sort of thing, except Warton was secure and had a longer runway, and more parking.
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Old 20th Dec 2017, 23:59   #294 (permalink)
 
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I notice that this year marked the 50th year of police aviation at Lippitts Hill.

In June 1967 the army provided Bell 47s on loan to the police and they were based at Lippitts Hill.... landing exactly where the EC145s do today. The current operation re-started in the mid-1970s with Enstroms. No one marked the 50th event I do not think there is that sort of atmosphere in the camp these days.

When was their last posting on their Twitter account? 163,000 followers, 23,000 tweets [mainly as the MPS air unit] but not one tweet since June.

The patient is in a coma.
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Old 21st Dec 2017, 12:56   #295 (permalink)
 
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Two police helicopters and a police aeroplane will regularly fly out of this new airbase, which will operate 24/7 and primarily serve London and the South East along with support from additional NPAS airbases at nearby Boreham Airfield, Redhill Aerodrome in Surrey and (RAF) Benson in Oxfordshire.
So Boreham is staying open then?
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Old 21st Dec 2017, 21:50   #296 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by Sky Sports View Post
So Boreham is staying open then?
If it were anywhere other than Boreham, I'd say no but, despite the obvious difficulties with the site and its proximity to the new base, I still wouldn't like to guess.
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Old 31st Dec 2017, 17:42   #297 (permalink)
 
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If I understand the plans at NW correctly it appears that the building will be placed inside the perimeter track and closer to the runway centreline than any existing building on site, seems a bit strange to place it inside the track imho...
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Old 31st Dec 2017, 22:17   #298 (permalink)
 
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I take comfort this thread will close in two hours or so. Shame, no doubt, there will be a new thread for next year disguised as news but in reality has nothing but negativity to offer.
Luckily, the various base Twitter feeds go some way to address the balance, equally luckily, there are more of the General Public that follow the Twitterati than that read the vitriol spouted here.

Happy New Year all.

SL
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Old 31st Dec 2017, 22:53   #299 (permalink)
 
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You only have to unsubscribe ....

HNY
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Old 1st Jan 2018, 07:02   #300 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sloppy Link View Post
I take comfort this thread will close in two hours or so. Shame, no doubt, there will be a new thread for next year disguised as news but in reality has nothing but negativity to offer.
Luckily, the various base Twitter feeds go some way to address the balance, equally luckily, there are more of the General Public that follow the Twitterati than that read the vitriol spouted here.

Happy New Year all.

SL
You appear to be a lone voice, SL. Happy New Year to you and to everyone working hard to make the best of a very bad situation.
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