HELICOPTERS from RAF Shawbury will once again be taking flight at night over Shropshire this month.

The next phase of night flying will take place for four weeks from October 19, but may be extended for weather reasons.

The flights will take place over the RAF's Low Flying Area 9, which encompases much of north Shropshire and along the Welsh borders.

A spokesman for the RAF explained the need for the night flights.

"Many of you will already be aware that a world-leading helicopter training school operates from RAF Shawbury, home to No 1 Flying Training School," said the spokesman.

"The School operates a state-of-the-art fleet of helicopters that ensure that the trainees from the RN, AAC and RAF receive the best instruction in the world.

"An essential element of this training is to fly at night so the aircrew can operate in any environment.

"The helicopters are configured so that crews can fly using Night Vision Devices like those they use on operations in hostile environments and when supporting emergencies at home such as the Whaley Bridge Dam collapse and more recently on Covid-19 support duties.

"Our next phase of night flying will run from October 19 for four weeks but this may have to be extended if weather conditions prevent completion of the training syllabus.

"Crews will operate throughout Low Flying Area 9 (LFA 9).

"This area stretches from Wrexham in Wales across to Stoke on Trent in Staffordshire, it then drops down to Bridgnorth and across back to Welshpool in Powys.

"Followers may hear, but not necessarily see our helicopters when flying at night as they train for front-line duties at home and overseas."