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Joint Helicopter Command

Joint Helicopter Command (JHC) is a tri-service organisation uniting battlefield military helicopters of the British Armed Forces for command and coordination purposes. Joint Helicopter Command reports to Army Headquarters at Andover.

Joint Helicopter Command
Joint helicopter command badge.png
Joint Helicopter Command badge
Country United Kingdom
AllegianceQueen Elizabeth II
Branch Naval Service
 British Army
 Royal Air Force
TypeTri-service command
RoleBattlefield helicopter operations
Size15,000 personnel 239 helicopters
Garrison/HQArmy Headquarters, Marlborough Lines, Andover, Hampshire
Motto(s)Across all boundaries
Rear Admiral Jonathan Pentreath[1]
Ceremonial chiefQueen Elizabeth II



Joint Helicopter Command was formed on 5 October 1999, from a recommendation in the 1998 Strategic Defence Review to consolidate the battlefield helicopters of the British Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy under a single command.[2]

Joint Helicopter Command's largest operation to date has been Operation Telic, the invasion of Iraq. Following the invasion, Joint Helicopter Command maintained units in Iraq, in support of British and coalition forces deployed there.[3] Another detachment was also maintained in Afghanistan, as part of Operation Herrick.[4]

Former Deployments: Joint Helicopter Force (Iraq)Edit

When deployed on a major operational deployment the aircraft and supporting assets are assigned to a Joint Helicopter Force, for example Joint Helicopter Force (Afghanistan) during Operation Herrick in Afghanistan.

The following types were deployed to Iraq under JHF (I):[5]

Former Deployments: Joint Helicopter Force (Afghanistan)Edit

The following types were deployed to Afghanistan under JHF (A):


The majority of the United Kingdom's military helicopters come under JHC, although exceptions include the Royal Navy's fleet helicopters, the Defence Helicopter Flying School, and the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force's search and rescue helicopters.

An overview of formations from each service under Joint Helicopter Command:

Joint Helicopter Force (Northern Ireland)Edit

The following types are deployed in Northern Ireland based at JHFS Aldergrove as JHF (NI), in support of the Police Service of Northern Ireland and military units.

Joint Helicopter Force (US)Edit

A number of aircraft and aircrews trained at Naval Air Facility El Centro for pre-deployment and desert training.

Senior CommandersEdit

JHC is commanded by a two-star officer from either the Royal Navy, British Army or Royal Air Force.[11]

Commander Joint Helicopter Command has been held by:



  1. ^ "A New Commanding Officer at the helm". Royal Navy. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Strategic Defence Review" (PDF). Ministry of Defence. 1 July 1998. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  3. ^ Ripley, Tim (2004). "Air War Iraq". Pen & Sword. ISBN 978-1844150694.
  4. ^ "Rare insight into the Royal Navy's Commando Helicopter Force". 21 February 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Operation Telic 2" (PDF). Operation Telic. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  6. ^ "Operation Telic 9" (PDF). Operation Telic. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  7. ^ "Operation Telic 3" (PDF). Operation Telic. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  8. ^ "Operation Telic 6" (PDF). Operation Telic. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  9. ^ a b c March 2008, p. 8.
  10. ^ a b "Operation HERRICK, Afghanistan". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  11. ^ "Senior tri-service and Ministry of Defence Posts" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 November 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2017.


  • March, P (2008). The Royal Air Force Yearbook 2008. Fairford, UK: The Royal Air Force Charitable Trust Enterprises.

External linksEdit