Red Arrows likely to miss Cromer Carnival’s 50th anniversary
- Credit: MoD/Crown copyright 2007
The Red Arrows are likely to miss next year's Cromer Carnival due to a nine-week tour of north America.
Dates for the tour have not been confirmed but it is probable the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team will miss displays at airshows in the UK, including the north Norfolk event which runs from August 17 to 23, and where they have been regular attractions since 1980.
The Red Arrows will embark on its first major tour of the US and Canada in more than 25 years. Pilots and other Red Arrows officials will also meet business leaders, visit schools and attend other engagements during the tour, which follows the RAF's 2018 centenary celebrations.
Ministers and military officials predict the trademark red, white and blue displays will be watched by millions of people.
On social media, however, some people expressed disappointment.
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On Twitter, Jonathan Richards wrote: 'Disappointed that @rafredarrows will miss a significant part of the UK display season next summer. A government post-Brexit tour to North America means thousands of UK fans young and old will miss out on them.'
The tour will promote the Government's 'GREAT' campaign, which was launched to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in 2012 and raise the profile of British culture and business abroad.
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Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: 'Our Red Arrows fly the flag for Britain across the globe, both in the skies and on the ground, and this tour will not only showcase their teamwork and aviation excellence, but also promote our great nation to billions of people across the world.'
Air Vice Marshal Warren James, the senior RAF officer responsible for the Red Arrows, added: 'The deployment of the Red Arrows will demonstrate the global reach and capability of the RAF and our continuing support of the United Kingdom's defence and commerce industries.
'Together with the GREAT Britain campaign, Western Hawk 19 will showcase our excellence, professionalism and proud heritage in education, engineering, technology and finance to our allies.'
The North America programme, the first significant tour of the region since 1993, follows the Red Arrows' nine-week tour of the Asia-Pacific and Middle East region in 2016.
A member of Cromer Carnival committee did not comment.