Chinook freed after being stuck in the mud for days

Efforts to shift the helicopter underway

The operation to free a Chinook helicopter after it became stuck in the mud in Oxfordshire last week has ended with success.

The aircraft from RAF Benson in Wallingford landed in a field near Wantage after a minor technical problem, and its wheels sank into the mud that covered the boggy site.

The authorities stress that there was absolutely no danger to the crew or anyone on the ground following the incident.

The wheels became stuck and the aircraft was unable to fly

The unusual problem took some time to sort out. It was not possible for it to be flown out of the field until the wheels were freed.

A number of options were discussed not just with us and the facilities we have at Benson, but with the Army, Royal Air Force, Navy personnel as well, lifting it with a crane, there were discussions if it could lift itself, but we need to assess what damage might be there first and get it out the mud really.

Flt Lt Cameron Stewart, 28 Squadron, RAF Benson

After nearly a week of trying, specialist crews were able to safely lift the chinook out of the ground, using two cranes.