Nine advanced trainers BAE SYSTEMS Hawk T. Mk.1 aircraft are flown by the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, The Red Arrows. At the moment, they are stationed at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire.
The Team Manager, who provides commentary during the demonstration, flies a tenth Red Arrow. The remainder of the crew is likewise photographed from air to air using the 10th Hawk. The Red Arrows have been used to successfully promote the BAE Systems Hawk to foreign clients during international tours.
Red Arrows Relocation
By 2022, RAF Scampton will be shut down, and the Red Arrows will move to a different RAF facility.
The Red Arrows will relocate to RAF Waddington before RAF Scampton closes in late 2022, according to a May 2020 announcement. To perform their displays and conduct training, the team will continue to use the airspace over RAF Scampton.
Since it began operating in 1916 as a Royal Flying Corps training site, RAF Waddington has trained hundreds of pilots to fly a diverse range of aircraft. After the War, squadrons began to decline, and in 1920 the Station was placed on a care and maintenance basis.
Waddington is currently one of the RAF's busiest operational airfields, with its units and staff supporting missions all over the globe. The Station continues to retain a high reputation and has produced record-breaking air shows up till 2014. It is despite the problematic operational pace.
2016 saw the Station's centennial celebration. Several activities were held to commemorate the anniversary, including unveiling a sculpture showing some of the previous aircraft. Along with RAF Scampton, the Station also exercises the Freedom of Lincoln.
Red Arrows Training
The Red Arrows began practising for the upcoming season nearly as soon as the previous year ended.
Winter training often begins in October with small formations of three or four aircraft. As training advances, the number of formations increases in aircraft number and each pilot files three sorties daily. These flights involve a detailed brief, debrief, and discussion to ensure that safety is a top priority and that the formations are accurate. An entire cycle of these components lasts roughly two hours, including a 30-minute flight.
Winter training continues into mid-March, after which the crew typically relocates abroad to a region with more stable, predictable weather to maximise flying time and perfect the presentation. Exercise Springhawk is what is happening here. Top Royal Air Force commanders evaluate the squad during Springhawk to obtain Public Display authority. If this is granted, the Squadron's pilot dons their renowned red flying suits in place of their green coveralls, and the ground staff is free to don their royal blue show coveralls. Once the season officially starts, the Red Arrows are allowed to perform in public.
The Red Arrows
Except for the five years they spent at the RAF College Cranwell between 1995 and 2000, the Red Arrows, founded in 1964, have called Scampton home since 1983.
Scampton's demise has been discussed for years, and it temporarily closed in the middle of the 1990s before reopening.
The Red Arrows were supposed to move to RAF Waddington, according to a May 2008 announcement from the MOD. However, that plan was reevaluated in December 2011, and the Government announced in June 2012 that the Red Arrows would stay at RAF Scampton until at least the end of the decade, and the runway was resurfaced.
The base would then be shut down by 2022, and the Reds would eventually be transferred, the MOD confirmed in July 2018.
The Ministry of Defence has also stated that as part of the RAF Scampton shutdown, it will investigate options for preserving the facility's unique history.
The base served as the home of 617 Squadron, which Guy Gibson led during the Second World War from RAF Scampton during the infamous dam raids on Germany.
During the Cold War, Vulcan bombers were stationed there to defend Britain from the threat of nuclear Armageddon.