‘Drunken’ Red Arrow in RAF probe as airman is ‘sent back from Greece following inappropriate behaviour’
- The famous display team are currently in Greece for a four-week training camp
- Sources claim there is a ‘huge under-the-table inquiry going on’ into the team
- Allegations of drinking and ‘suspected inappropriate behaviour’ in the group
- It is claimed one pilot has already been sent home as a result of what’s happened
The RAF is investigating the Red Arrows over allegations of drinking, it has emerged.
Sources claim one pilot has been sent home from Greece, where the famous aerobatic display team is training.
An insider claimed: ‘There is a huge under-the-table inquiry going on. It’s to do with alcohol and suspected inappropriate behaviour. The head of the RAF is personally involved in the Red Arrows probe.’
The display team is the pride of the Royal Air Force – and the public face of the service.
The best pilots in the business perform death-defying stunts, zooming over crowds producing perfect plumes of red, white and blue smoke.
They attend key British events, performing at air shows, festivals and the most prestigious royal celebrations.
The Red Arrows, pictured here flying above London, are currently training in Greece ahead of their summer display season
After being grounded by Covid, they are preparing for a full season this summer with a series of training sessions called Exercise Springhawk.
On April 30, they announced on their Twitter page: ‘The team will spend about four weeks in Greece perfecting and polishing the 2022 display.’
Ahead of the trip, one pilot gave an interview to BBC radio, telling listeners that the team relied on the clear blue skies of Greece to perfect their training.
He said they would spend four weeks there, flying three times a day, five days a week, and would come back to the UK ‘towards the end of May’.
Sources claim a pilot in the group, pictured here flying in North Yorkshire, has been sent home from Greece
The display team is the pride of the Royal Air Force – and the public face of the service
The best pilots in the business perform death-defying stunts, zooming over crowds producing perfect plumes of red, white and blue smoke
The team, based at the Hellenic Air Force base of Tanagra, just north of Athens, have posted photographs on social media.
Prior to Greece, they trained in Croatia.
Yet less than half way through the Greek leg of Exercise Springhawk, sources claimed a problem with drinking had been reported to top brass in Whitehall.
The details have been kept to a tight circle.
They attend key British events, performing at air shows, festivals and the most prestigious royal celebrations
After being grounded by Covid, they are preparing for a full season this summer with a series of training sessions called Exercise Springhawk
One pilot was allegedly sent back to the UK on Wednesday.
Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston, head of the RAF, was said by a source to be involved in investigating the allegations, but RAF insiders played this down last night, saying he was ‘kept informed’ about lots of matters without being directly involved in them.
They said they did ‘not recognise’ claims of drinking.
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.’