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Why is Suffolk missing out on Red Arrows VJ Day flypast?

PUBLISHED: 16:40 13 August 2020

The main focus of the national event will be the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. Picture: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

The main focus of the national event will be the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. Picture: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Suffolk will miss out on seeing a Red Arrows military flypast to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War on VJ Day.

People in East Suffolk have often seen the Red Arrows down the route of the A12 to mark big occasions, such as the 70th anniversary of the RAF.

But even though a national flypast will take place over the four capital cities of the UK on Saturday, their route will not include East Anglia.

There are, however, a number of local and national events during the day to mark the anniversary, which will be carried out while recognising social distancing – as were events for the VE Day anniversary in May.

In Suffolk, there are events at Ipswich cenotaph in Christchurch Park and at Capel St Mary to mark a two-minute silence at 11am.

At that time, the national commemoration will be taking place at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire where the ceremony will be led by the Prince of Wales.

During the morning, the Red Arrows will carry out a national flypast over the centres of Edinburgh, Belfast, Cardiff and London.

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They will fly over the Royal Hospital – home of the Chelsea Pensioners – after arriving from the Welsh capital.

There will be no flypast over Buckingham Palace, because none of the Royal Family is in residence at present – the Queen and Prince Phillip are on their annual holiday at Balmoral in Scotland.

Flypasts over Buckingham Palace fly straight down the line of the A12 from Ipswich, because that continues as a direct route over The Mall – but that will not be happening this time.

There will be another flypast over the National Memorial Arboretum featuring the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight with its Spitfires, Hurricanes, and the only airworthy Lancaster bomber left in the UK.

MORE: Memories of the campaign in the Far East

As well as the formal ceremonies at Ipswich and Capel, in Capel residents are invited to have socially-distanced picnics in their gardens to mark the anniversary and a number of World War II vehicles are due to tour the village to mark the event.

During the evening the BBC is broadcasting a special commemoration event from Horse Guards’ Parade in London to honour the veterans who fought in the Far East and remained far from home after the war in Europe had come to an end.


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