England

Delay in Red Arrows return to RAF Scampton after crash

Flt Lt Jon Egging
Image caption Flt Lt Egging was known to colleagues and friends as "Eggman"

Poor weather has delayed the Red Arrows flying back to their base at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire after a fatal crash following a Dorset airshow.

Flt Lt Jon Egging, 33, from Rutland, died when his plane came down near Bournemouth airport on Saturday.

All the RAF's Hawk T1 aircraft were grounded after the crash but restrictions were due to be lifted.

A spokeswoman confirmed the Red Arrows would aim to fly back on Saturday, when better weather is forecast.

The RAF said the Red Arrows would begin training again using eight planes instead of nine on 30 August.

But it could not say when public displays would resume.

Earlier, a spokesman said: "Display flying by the Red Arrows team, in an eight-ship formation, will recommence subject to a successful period of consolidation and approval to display."

A defence source had said it was "extremely unlikely" the Red Arrows would do any more displays this year.

Tributes to pilot

Before Flt Lt Egging's death, the display team regularly trained with eight planes in case a pilot was unable to fly.

Flt Lt Egging's wife, Dr Emma Egging, watched him perform with the Red Arrows minutes before he crashed to his death.

Image caption The plane plunged into a field near the River Stour

Eyewitnesses described seeing his plane hit the ground in a field by the River Stour near the village of Throop following a display over the seafront.

Hundreds of tributes have been left at RAF Scampton and outside Bournemouth Town Hall.

The wreckage has been taken to the Boscombe Down aircraft testing site at Idmiston in Wiltshire.

The Military Aviation Authority investigation into the cause of the crash is expected to take months. No details have been released about its initial findings.

However the MoD said preliminary investigations showed there were no wider safety concerns about the Hawk T1 aircraft.

About 120 Hawk jets used for RAF training, which were also grounded, have been able to resume exercises.

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