Pictured is the RAF Odiham 40th Anniversary of the Chinook special paint scheme on ZD984. Seen here against moody skies as it prepares for a routine training sortie, operated by 27 Squadron.

This year, Chinook Force is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Chinook helicopter entering RAF Service with a commemorative new tail art.

The newly painted Chinook celebrated its new look, departing from RAF Odiham, home of the Chinook Force, flying along the South Coast on a routine training sortie passing key landmarks unveiling the commemorative tail art to onlookers. On board was the designer and current Chinook pilot Flt Lt Andy Donovan of 27 Sqn, RAF Odiham.

The project had taken two years of design and engineering preparation before entering the paint bay at RAF Odiham. Once in the paint bay, it then took a dedicated team of Serco staff several weeks to meticulously apply the special livery. Overall, approximately 300 hours were spent preparing the Chinook’s tail surface, painstakingly applying masking and then applying the design.

The Boeing CH-47 Chinook Helicopter arrived into RAF service on the 22nd November 1980. Throughout its 40 years of service the Chinook has made an immeasurable contribution to the Service, supporting communities across the UK and operating in every major conflict since the Falklands War.

The newly painted aircraft, ZD984, has re-entered the 27 Sqn’s fleet at RAF Odiham and will resume essential routine training preparing our aircrew for operations in the UK and overseas. Additionally, the Chinook will support the RAF Chinook Display Team’s season and Chinook 40 commemorative events during 2021.

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