Memorial for crash victims

The widow of a Blackpool pilot killed in the Morecambe Bay Helicopter disaster is hoping to re-unite families of victims and emergency workers involved in the rescue mission.

Tuesday, 20th December 2016, 10:23 am
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 2:58 pm
Sandra Potton with a picture of Steve

Next week Sandra Potton will mark the tenth anniversary of the crash in which her husband, Steve, and six other men were killed.

Steve was the captain of the Blackpool based helicopter which came down as it flew between gas rigs in Morecambe Bay on December 27 2006.

Sandra, from South Shore, will next week join with family, friends, lifeboat crews and relatives of those who were on the flight for a special ceremony. And she’s desperate for as many people as possible to be able to pay their respects.

She said: “We’re going to go down to the RNLI station at 10.40am, just for a small service.

“We’re going to sing a few hymns and say a few prayers and pay our respects to those seven people who lost their lives.”

Sandra (pictured left) will be joined by dozens of Fylde coast RNLI volunteers.

And she wants to contact the relatives of the other men who were onboard the CHC Scotia helicopter at the time of the disaster.

She said: “It would be good to have as many of the families there as we can.

“But over time you do lose contact, I’m not in touch with as many people as I was.

“I just want to get the message out and hopefully we can have all the families there for what will be a very significant event.

“It is a big landmark, 10 years, it seems like an occasion we should mark.”

The service, on Tuesday December 27, will take place at a memorial which was unveiled in 2012.

Fleetwood lifeboat crews were among those who responded to the crash spending hours scouring the dark waters for any signs of life.

Bob Warburton, Les Ahmed, Alf Neasham, Jakie Shaw, Keith Smith and co-pilot Simon Foddering were also killed in the crash.

Steve, 52, took control of the Eurocopter Dauphin AS365N from his co-pilot just seconds before it crashed.

He was able to level the aircraft, which had rolled dangerously to the right, but was unable to halt the descent.