VJ Day 75: Red Arrows forced to cancel London, Edinburgh and Cardiff flyovers

15 August 2020, 17:14

The Red Arrow flyover was supposed to be the first over all four capitals in the UK since the 2012 Olympics
The Red Arrow flyover was supposed to be the first over all four capitals in the UK since the 2012 Olympics. Picture: PA

By Matt Drake

The Red Arrows, who were assembled to mark the end of the Second World War, were forced to cancel their flypast over London, Cardiff and Edinburgh due to "appalling weather".

The Red Arrows flyover was supposed to be the first over all four capitals in the UK since the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics.

But parts of the route have been forced to be cancelled with the Edinburgh, Cardiff and London leg dropped.

Writing on Twitter, the Red Arrows said: "Sadly, the appalling weather - as seen here on approach into @RAFBrizeNorton this afternoon - has forced us to cancel today’s flypast over #London for #VJDay75. Very disappointing but safety always our first priority. #RedArrows."

The RAF tweeted: "Our aircraft have safely landed @GPAPassenger but, unfortunately, due to low cloud outside of safety limits at #Edinburgh, we could not carry out the flypast over the city.

"Weather particularly challenging in parts of the UK today - meaning this could impact plans. #RedArrows."

The iconic jets still performed in front of veterans at Glasgow's Prestwick Airport, however, where they carried out a pre-planned refuel stop.

Ministry of Defence handout photo of The Red Arrows, carrying out a flypast over Belfast
Ministry of Defence handout photo of The Red Arrows, carrying out a flypast over Belfast. Picture: PA

Today is the 75th anniversary of VJ Day - victory over the Japanese which signalled the very end of the Second World War.

Richard Day, 93, from Boreham Wood, north London, who was involved in the decisive Battle of Kohima in north-east India, which marked a turning point in the Far East land campaign, was among about 40 veterans at the ceremony of remembrance.

Mr Day, of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, served in the forces which relieved Kohima and Imphal and told of how he contracted malaria and dysentery at the same time, while fighting a highly determined enemy.

READ MORE: VJ Day at 75: Spitfires, Hurricanes and Red Arrows soar over Britain

The Red Arrows, carried out a flypast over Glasgow Prestwick Airport to mark VJ Day
The Red Arrows, carried out a flypast over Glasgow Prestwick Airport to mark VJ Day. Picture: PA

He said: "I think the worse part was crossing rivers at night, it was cold at night - then all night in wet clothes and wet equipment, still having to move about.

"They (the Japanese) were very determined for their emperor.

"It was a glory for them to die for their emperor. They didn't appear to have any fear at all."

The Covid-19 pandemic has meant tributes to mark the landmark anniversary have been organised online and in television, with the Duke of Cambridge to appear on screens across the country in VJ Day 75.

In a statement, the Queen said: "Prince Philip and I join many around the world in sending our grateful thanks to the men and women from across the Commonwealth, and Allied nations, who fought so valiantly to secure the freedoms we cherish today."

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