College and RAF join forces to help restoration project fly

College and RAF join forces to help restoration project fly

Engineering students and RAF join forces to help restoration project fly

Two representatives from the Royal Air Force (RAF) visited a college in Suffolk to help a restoration project take off.

The staff are based at RAF Honington and the project will see engineering students at Suffolk New College help renovate some military vehicles.
Russ Nurse is a section sergeant of the tactical police squadron at RAF Honington. He explains how the project came about. He said, “The vehicles (an armoured car and a police motorbike) have been sitting outside the police museum in Portsmouth for about 12 years.
“Therefore, my squadron decided we wanted to get the vehicles restored both mechanically and cosmetically. In the process of doing this, my boss ran into Lieutenant Colonel Sutherland (from Suffolk New College) who agreed to help take the project on.

“The plan is that students at the college will work on them over the winter and we hope to unveil them at the 2019 Suffolk Show.
“Naturally we are very appreciative of the support we have had from the college. I think it’s good for the students to get involved and we will be inviting them down to RAF Honington in the future so they can come and see what we do. Hopefully this might spark an interest in them wanting to join the RAF.”

16-year-old Malek Jacobs is on a level one apprenticeship course in engineering at Suffolk New College. He said, “This will be a new experience for me and something I will enjoy. It will give me more experience and it’s always good to help out the local community.”

Marketing manager, Craig Shimmon, said, “This is a win-win situation as far as we are concerned. Our students will gain some new skills whilst helping the RAF. They will be taking on a valuable heritage project and by doing so they will help create a tiny bit of history. We are incredibly proud to be involved in this.”