SAS Blue Thunder helicopter seen circling above town where troops abseil to roof

A SAS helicopter was spotted circling above a town before some figures reportedly abseiled down onto a roof under the cover of darkness.

The unmarked blue and white Dauphin helicopter, known as Blue Thunder, unloaded members of the crew as they carried out military training near Bury Training and Safety Centre, in Hinds Lane in Bury.

Local resident Mark Stevenson witnessed the special forces in operation for several hours on Tuesday evening (March 15) and filmed the moment the chopper flying above the town while most people were asleep.

The Blu Thunder could be seen deploying cables and some figures abseil down to a roof.

The helicopter then circles back around to pick up the same people up from the roof later, Mark told Manchester Evening News.

One viewer claimed she was woken up by a loud noice as she commented on social media: "Oh my God I’m so glad this has been said, it was pretty much on my house, scared the hell out of me and my daughter."

It is believed that the special forces carried out a military exercise known as "fast-roping" – where personnels can learn to land from a significant height where a helicopter cannot touch down.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service is not believed to have been involved.

A similar training exercise was spotted in 2019 where residents in Ancoats saw two "military-style" helicopters circling over the Manchester Central Fire Station.

During that incident, at least four people then descend from one of the choppers onto the flat roof of the building as one resident recalled the helicopters came within "spitting distance" of his balcony.

A second eyewitness said they had seen "two Blue Thunder" helicopters land near Oldham Road and then taking off again.

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