According to a local Colchester newspaper 300 members of 16 Air Assault Brigade have been unable to qualify as paratroopers because a lack of aircraft has meant that they haven't been able to get the practice jumps in.
Fortunately these days 16 Air Assault, the spearhead of Britain's rapid response capability, is not so reliant on its
parachuting skills; helicopters have proved more suitable for the air assault role in today's conflicts.
The newspaper article goes on to hammer the MoD for a catalogue of cock-ups and disasters from the SA80 to Eurofighter and makes the sombre comment: "If people find themselves lining Colchester High Street to honour another dead soldier from our town, it can only be hoped a lack of equipment or air support is not to blame. If it is, heads should be hung in shame, as well as sorrow, at the Government and Ministry of Defence."
Colchester Gazette: Tale of paratroopers with no planes sums up shambles at MoD