Rescue service to be axed

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A DECISION to axe RAF search and rescue operations in the North East has been condemned.

Lifesavers and politicians have hit out at plans that will see the service close at RAF Boulmer, which serves Wearside and the rest of the North East.

The Government has announced that Sea King helicopter operations at the base, near Alnwick, Northumberland, will end in 2015, after 33 years of saving lives.

The decision has been greeted with dismay by lifeboat crews and politicians who say local people rely on the “excellent” service provided by crews.

Although the station will remain open, personnel will be redeployed to other RAF bases.

Helicopters were called out more than 130 times between January and September this year.

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