Kent

Folkestone Red Arrows display marks Diamond Jubilee

Red Arrows
Image caption The Red Arrows display team began their 2012 season in Folkestone

Celebrations to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in Kent have included the first public aerobatic display by the Red Arrows as a team of seven.

The RAF team flew its first display of the 2012 season at Folkestone Air Show on Saturday.

It is flying as a seven this year following the deaths of two pilots in 2011 and the departure of its first female pilot.

The airshow is the first to be held on Folkestone seafront for nine years.

The Red Arrows returned to their home base at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire in May after eight weeks of intensive training in Cyprus.

Dragon fleet

They are still performing high-profile flypasts with nine aircraft, including one for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Muster and Parade at Windsor Castle on 19 May.

Elsewhere in Kent, Medway River Festival is taking place on Chatham waterfront to mark the Diamond Jubilee.

Yacht and dragon fleet races are taking place in an event which it is hoped will become an annual family fun day.

Medway is also celebrating the Jubilee with a special service in Rochester Cathedral on Sunday and the lighting of six official beacons on Monday night.

Other events taking place in Kent on Saturday include the Coxcombe Fair at Ightham.

The village was granted in Royal Charter in 1315 by Edward II to hold an annual fair but the last one was in June 2002 to mark the Queen's Golden Jubilee.

And Dover Tattoo is being held for the first time since the 1980s to mark the Diamond Jubilee.

The two-day event started on Friday evening with a show including the Royal Signals Motorcycle Display Team and the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment's Parachute Display Team.

A military-themed family fun day is being held on Saturday.

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