Red Arrows celebrate 60th anniversary at this year's Royal International Air Tattoo

The iconic Red Arrows display team is celebrating 60 years in the skies this year with a new routine launching at the Royal International Air Tattoo in Fairford this July 2024.

By Sarah Kent  |  Published
The RAF display team is back for the summer season with a fresh routine for the Royal International Air Tattoo this July 2024.

The Red Arrows are marking an incredible 60 years of entertainment and service this year, with a brand-new routine choreographed especially for the Royal International Air Tattoo.

The nine-ship display team will perform its special anniversary routine for the first time at the RIAT, which is the world's largest military air show, taking place over three days from Friday 19 July to Sunday 21 July 2024 at RAF Fairford in the Cotswolds.

Squadron Leader Jon Bond, team leader and Red 1, said: 'The Royal International Air Tattoo and RAF Fairford have played an important part in the Red Arrows’ story, not least with the team being based at the airfield for a short period of time in its earliest guise.

'This makes the Red Arrows’ appearance at this year’s Air Tattoo especially poignant as we invite people to join with us to help celebrate our Diamond Season and, once again, share their enjoyment of seeing the team perform.

'Appropriately, the team’s preparing a trademark Diamond Nine formation for the 2024 show, with many fresh manoeuvres and special shapes featuring in this new display with our BAE Systems Hawks.'

The Red Arrows, officially known as the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, are a prominent fixture at sporting and royal events over the summer each year, drawing crowds for its awe-inspiring aerobatic displays.

First founded in 1964 at RAF Little Rissington near Stow-on-the-Wold and consisting of serving RAF personnel operating seven aircraft, the now nine-strong team has performed over 4,800 displays in 57 countries worldwide.

Jon said: 'We’re looking forward to inspiring all those at the Air Tattoo through our teamwork and flying — representing the Royal Air Force at this truly international celebration of aviation and meeting thousands of people on-the-ground at STEM exhibitions, at our stand in the RAF Experience area and other locations.'

With just four months to go until the RIAT, the team are training hard in small groups of three or four aircraft formations. Each pilot flies three sorties (missions) a day, five days a week, with the formations growing in aircraft number as training progresses, and usually lasting 30-minutes. 

Paul Atherton, chief executive officer at Royal Air Force Charitable Trust Enterprises, said: 'The Red Arrows are one of the world’s most recognisable display teams and we are looking forward to watching them perform at this year’s show.

'This year has huge significance for the Red Arrows and we know they have been perfecting a new routine to mark their diamond anniversary in style.'

Tickets for this year's Royal International Air Tattoo are available via the event's website.

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