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Eighty years after, at a hangar in Al Mahatta Museum, visitors find such aircraft as the 1937 AVRO Anson IG AKVW-UK from the Royal Air Force (RAF) used for the RAF Flying Training School and then the Air Observer Navigation School.
CAPTION(S): HEAVEN Bailey Cooper, with police air observer Jayne Kidd JOY Richard Hunter and his grandfather Richard Hunter at the police helicopter stationed at Newcastle Airport.
On the ground, the RAF will provide mobile ground radar systems, while the army will deploy air observers and high-velocity missiles.
The Air Operations Unit has a team of two sergeants and 12 constables who are all trained air observers.
When the Battle of the Somme wound down in the dismal fall of 1916, air observer Fred Libby had 10 victories and was selected for pilot training.
Next came training as an Air Observer at St Andrews in Scotland, followed by Harwell.
Until now only air observers were allowed to wear the hi-tech specs but now the pilot can wear them too under new Civil Aviation Authority regulations.
Police air observer PC Dave Bellis, said: 'If there is any suspicious activity, we can offer intelligence and give the van an escort, monitoring traffic around it.