Exercises

Seven Aircraft, Seven Field Guns: Military Performs Rare Lift On Salisbury Plain

The field guns were lifted by Chinooks and Pumas during Exercise Decisive Manoeuvre 2 on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire.

Seven British military aircraft have completed a rare synchronised lift of seven field guns.

It involved three Chinooks and four Pumas from 7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery and 16 Air Assault Brigade, alongside the Joint Helicopter Support Squadron.

The three Chinooks went first, collecting three field guns, while the Pumas hovered in the distance.

Flight Lieutenant Nathan McDonald, from the Joint Helicopter Support Squadron, said: "This is a joint exercise between Puma force and Chinook force and we're doing something we've never tried before.

"The outcome is showing a capability that is an option available for us to use if we ever want to do it and it shows that support helicopters can work with our counterparts on the ground, as well."

Puma carries field gun on Salisbury Plain 041219 CREDIT BFBS
Four Pumas were involved in Exercise Decisive Manoeuvre 2.

The lift was part of Exercise Decisive Manoeuvre 2 on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire.

Each field gun used in the training weighs more than 1,000 pounds and perfect coordination is needed to lift it.

"The ability to move these light guns in theatre, quickly and efficiently, is a really important aspect of 16 [Air Assault] Brigade's capability," said  Lieutenant Colonel James Baker.

"This is really a validation that we are properly trained and able to integrate with the helicopter force."

Once the guns are lifted, the helicopters had to hold them steady and transport them to a new location while in formation.