Search and rescue flights to get civilian pilots
The Sea King helicopters flown by Prince William are to be scrapped and their RAF pilots replaced with civilian contractors – despite the heir to the throne's personal lobbying of the Prime Minister – as part of the privatisation of Britain's search and rescue service.
Two bases – RAF Boulmer and the Portland coastguard centre – will cease search and rescue operations in 2015 and 2017 respectively. A private contractor will take over the running of the remaining service in 2016 on a 10-year deal.
Campaigners have warned that "lives will be lost" as a result of the closure of more than half of Britain's Coastguard Rescue Centres. The number of bases will fall from 12 to 10 but ministers insisted yesterday that contractors would be expected to "provide at least the same level of service as at present". It has been confirmed that Prince William took part in an operation at the weekend to rescue Russian sailors adrift in the Irish Sea.
- 1 Isis 'jihadi bride' claims forced sex with Yazidi girls is never rape because Koran condones it
- 2 New Zealand 'the best country to work as a prostitute', says sex worker advocacy group
- 3 Purity balls: Girls in the US making virginity pledges as fathers vow to 'protect purity'
- 4 Mother 'will allow son's circumcision in return for release from prison'
- 5 Female Muay Thai champion hustles coaches to give them a beating
Greek hospitals cannot afford painkillers, scissors or sheets as budget cuts bite
Purity balls: Girls in the US making virginity pledges as fathers vow to 'protect purity'
Female Muay Thai champion hustles coaches to give them a beating
Puerto Rico, island of lost dreams: People are leaving the debt-hit territory in droves as near neighbour Cuba's star rises
Picture of couple posing with beached dolphin 'that later died' causes outrage
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
Gay marriage 'Bert and Ernie' cake bakery found guilty of discrimination in Northern Ireland
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...
£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...