In a week, and on the eve of a promised British exit from the European Union, otherwise known as Brexit, Britain’s famed Red Arrows will undertake a charm offensive in North America, promising to wow audiences in six Canadian cities by the end of September.
The Royal Air Force’s aerial acrobatic team will launch its largest-ever tour of North America, landing in Halifax in less than a week, and wrapping up with a flypast over Victoria, British Columbia on September 26, including a stop at the Toronto International Air Show on the Labour Day long weekend.
“I am absolutely thrilled to have the world famous Red Arrows in Canada this summer,” said British High Commissioner Susan le Jeune d’Allegeershecque. “This tour is an excellent opportunity to not only showcase the Red Arrows’ aerobatic expertise to Canadians from the Atlantic to the Pacific, but also to celebrate the close and enduring relationship between our two countries.”
The tour is the first deployment of the Red Arrows to North America in over a decade. The team’s first order of duty will be a flypast with the Royal Canadian Air Force over Halifax Harbour August 11 at 2 p.m. A special display will be set up on the ground featuring Britain’s contributions to aviation, and to explain the science of flight to a new generation of enthusiasts.
“A key aim of the tour is to inspire people through safe, dynamic and visually-exciting shows,” said Wing Commander Andrew Keith. “However, we have also planned dozens of ground events, where we hope to meet countless individuals and showcase the importance of science, technology, engineering and maths – the STEM subjects – in our work.”
|Aug 11||Halifax waterfront||Waterfront pavilion, flypast with RCAF and A400M along waterfront|
|Aug 13||Ottawa Parliament Hill||Flypast over Changing of the Guard ceremony at 10 a.m.|
|Aug 13||Gatineau-Ottawa Executive Airport||First aerobatic performance at Aero Gatineau-Ottawa with Vintage Wings of Canada|
|Aug 28||Niagara Falls||Flypast over Niagara Falls|
|Aug 31 – Sept 2||Toronto waterfront||Performances at Canadian International Air Show|
|Sept 26||Vancouver waterfront||Full-day display with flypast at 5 p.m.|
|Sept 26||Victoria waterfront||Flypast over Upper Harbour|
Canada and Britain have signed a deal to protect air travel in the event of a Brexit. It will allow airlines to fly any number of flights between the two countries. The deal takes effect when Britain is no longer covered by a similar agreement between Canada and the European Union. New British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has pledged to take Britain out of the European Union by the end of October.
The Red Arrow team consists of 11 pilots, nine of whom fly in the display, and more than 100 support personnel and technicians. One of the world’s premier aerobatic teams, the Red Arrows has completed nearly 5,000 displays, in 57 countries.