Red Arrows will fly at Cromer Carnival this year - but not at Suffolk Show because of safety fears
- Credit: citizenside.com
The Red Arrows will make a triumphant return to the north Norfolk coast this summer, but have pulled out of the Suffolk Show.
The RAF aerobatic team, which is based at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire and made up of RAF pilots and engineers, has been a regular attraction at the summer event, performing over the beach and Cromer Pier, since 1980.
But last year they were unable to make it because of commitments elsewhere.
Carnival chairman Tony Shipp said they had received the news last Friday that the Red Arrows would perform this year, on the carnival's parade day, Wednesday, August 17, at a time yet to be confirmed,
He said: 'It is a big highlight. We wanted them to come this year, having missed last year. We are very pleased. It means a lot for the town, and the tradespeople. It brings a lot of people to the carnival and a huge number of people to the town. It supports the rest of the programme. It will the icing on the cake for carnival day.'
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But Red Arrows will not appear at Suffolk Show 2016 due to safety concerns
The show's director has expressed his 'disappointment,' but said the RAF had not confirmed an appearance.
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The RAF's website appeared to reveal that the jets would fly on both days of the show, which takes place on Wednesday 1 and Thursday 2 June.
Show director Bill Baker said organisers were in discussions with the RAF and had hoped to have the planes fly at the show.
But after a safety review, they raised concerns about the flight path and its proximity to the A12 and the A14.
He said word of the negotiations only got out after the RAF's website appeared to show confirmation of the Red Arrows' performance.
'It's obviously disappointing for us, as it would have been great to have the Red Arrows at the show. But they would be flying close to major junctions on the A12, the A14 and over built-up areas in Ipswich,' said Mr Baker.
'They said the decision was not taken in relation to fears caused by the Shoreham air crash, but this has heightened awareness at air shows across the country. It is unfortunate and we are sorry to raise the public's expectations. But our show is packed full of attractions, and will be very successful as it has been in previous years.'
A spokesman from the RAF confirmed the Red Arrows would not be performing at the show.
'After conducting a site survey it was deemed unsuitable for our needs. There was no possible way we could have the planes fly over a very very busy junction. It is as a result of this survey that we cannot have the Red Arrows perform there,' the spokesman said.
As Suffolk's largest two-day visitor experience, the Suffolk Show showcases the county's best food, drink and agricultural heritage. It is known for being a great day out for families.