RAF investigation after ‘drunk’ Red Arrow pilot ordered home for ‘inappropriate behaviour’

G7: The Red Arrows perform a flypast at summit in Cornwall

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An insider has claimed that there is “a huge, under-the-table” inquiry underway to do with alcohol and “suspected inappropriate behaviour”. They said that the head of the RAF is personally involved in the probe.

The source also told the Mail that one pilot has been sent home from Greece, which is where the aerobatics display team is training.

Based at the Hellenic Air Force base of Tanagra north of Athens, team members have been posting photographs on social media.

Less than half way through the Greek leg of Exercise Springhawk, sources claimed a problem with drinking was reported to Whitehall chiefs.

An RAF spokesperson said: “A member of the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Display Team – the Red Arrows – has been temporarily withdrawn and has returned to the UK for personal reasons. It would not be appropriate to offer further comment at this stage.

“The Red Arrows continue with their pre-season display training and preparations for events including the Platinum Jubilee programme.”

MailOnline reports that RAF insiders do not recognise claims of drinking.

The Red Arrows are officially known as the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team and are based at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire.

They are set to relocate to RAF Waddington south of Lincoln before the end of this year.


This year they are due to display in a seven-aircraft formation rather than nine as two pilots have moved to other roles within the RAF.

However, the Red Arrows will use nine aircraft for national flypast events throughout the year.

Among their appearances in the UK, they can be seen at the Midlands Air Festival from June 2-4, the English Riviera Airshow in Torbay from June 4-5 and the Teesside Airshow on June 11.

The Red Arrows and aircraft used by the UK Armed Forces on operations around the world are set to take part in a flypast to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and complete the monarch’s birthday parade.

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Dozens of aircraft from the Royal Navy, the Army and Royal Air Force will soar over Buckingham Palace on Thursday June 2, according to the MoD.

It is expected to take six minutes to fly over the crowds and is set to include more than three times the number of aircraft which took part in the Queen’s last birthday parade flypast in London in 2019.

The display will include helicopters from the Royal Navy and the Army as well as RAF aircraft recently seen responding to events in Kabul, Ukraine and during the Covid pandemic.

It will also include highlights from the history of the RAF, including aircraft from the Royal Air Force Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.

The flypast will follow the Queen’s birthday parade, known as Trooping The Colour – a display of military pageantry involving 1,500 officers and soldiers as well as 250 horses from the Army’s Household Division on Horse Guards Parade.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: “I’m proud that the Armed Forces are leading the nation in celebration with such a spectacular display.

“Throughout the Platinum Jubilee celebrations we will all enjoy the expertise, skill and talent of our Armed Forces as we celebrate Her Majesty’s 70 years on the throne.”

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