The Westland Wessex was a general purpose duties all-metal helicopter produced by Westland Aircraft Ltd. and represented a British licence development of the Sikorsky S-58.
The Wessex HU.5, basically similar to the previous variant, the HC.2, represented the last version for the Royal Navy. It was powered by twin R-R Gnome turboshaft engines, which provided enough power and added safety for carrying troops into action. It had a strengthened airframe which allowed pilots to fly more efficient low-level sorties. Heavier loads of up to 3,200 lb (1,453 kg) could also be underslung and formidable weapons carried. A pre-production aircraft of the HU.5 flew in May 1963 and a total of 100 helicopters were deliverered in the period 1963 ‒ 1967.
At the beginning the older Wessex Mk.1/3 style air intake was retained, but later after frequent FOD problems were encountered, a new fairing with upper inlet was installed.
The Wessex HU.5 was used for carrying soldiers from a carrier or helicopter landing assault ships, in SAR, communications, fire support, air ambulance, paratrooping and ferrying roles. It also acted in the Commando role, similar to that of the Wessex Commando Mk.1, while a weapons platform could be mounted on both sides above the undercarriage. A weapons platform could be mounted above the undercarriage and the helicopter could be armed with A/T missiles, rocket projectiles and forward firing machine guns.
The Wessex HU.5 was withdrawn from RN service in March 1988.
Colour schemes included in the kit:
1) Westland Wessex HU.5, Black XS493/N, No.848 NAS, Royal Navy, HMS Albion, Borneo, the Far East, summer 1965
2) Westland Wessex HU.5, White XT458/Y-CU, No.707 NAS, Royal Navy, RNAS Culdrose (HMS Seahawk), Cornwall, U.K., summer 1966
3) Westland Wessex HU.5, White XT461/D-CU, No.846 NAS, Royal Navy, RNAS Culdrose (HMS Seahawk), Cornwall, U.K., spring 1970
4) Westland Wessex HU.5, White XT460/T-H, No.845 NAS, Royal Navy, HMS Hermes, ‘Operation Mercy’, Northern Cyprus, July 1974