The Red Arrows will stay in Lincolnshire, MoD says
By Tess de la Mare, PA
The Red Arrows will be staying in their home county of Lincolnshire when their current base closes in 2022, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said.
The aerial display team will relocate to RAF Waddington when RAF Scampton closes its doors, but will still be seen in the skies above the Lincolnshire village of Scampton after the move.
The Red Arrows were formed in 1964 and they have been based at RAF Scampton since 1983.
The move is part of the MoD’s £4 billion plan to upgrade its estate and modernise its facilities and infrastructure over the next 10 years.
The planned move of the Red Arrows will now move to the assessment and planning stage, the MoD said.
RAF Scampton was home to 617 Squadron – famous for its role in the Dambusters raids in 1943.
The MoD said it is still looking at options for how the base’s history can be preserved after its closure.
The nine Hawk Jets of the Red Arrows were last seen in action on May 8, marking VE Day by performing a flyover of the deserted streets of central London.
Defence Minister Jeremy Quin said: “As we saw during the recent VE Day celebrations, the Red Arrows have a proud and prominent place in British culture and have long demonstrated the best of what the UK Armed Forces offer with their world-renowned skills, discipline and teamwork.
“It is good news that we have an excellent base for them at RAF Waddington, and I am delighted that they will be able to continue to practise their extraordinary aerobatic talents above RAF Scampton in their home county of Lincolnshire.”
Air Vice-Marshal Warren James said: “I am delighted that we now have confirmation that the Royal Air Force Aerobatics Team – the Red Arrows – will remain in the heart of Lincolnshire.
“The Royal Air Force remains committed to the strong links it has with the county and a considerable amount of work has been carried out to secure a suitable future home location.
“The Red Arrows are a highly skilled and professional team showcasing the very best of the British precision and leadership for industry on a global scale, and inspiring next generation interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics through an air and space power lens.
“The announcement of this move will provide much needed stability for their future endeavours.”