Cost to the taxpayer of training RAF pilots

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8 years 6 months

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There must have others who, like me, were mystified by the internal shenanigans involving the first and only female pilot flying for the Red Arrows during 2010/11. The account, given at the time, simply said that she had decided to retire from the Red Arrows Display Team. No reason given. Rumours abounded, some decidedly uncomplimentary. It wasn't until yesterday, Wed. 29th that an article in the Daily Telegraph finally filled in the gaps. It had been alleged that the female pilot was having a 'relationship' with the Red Arrows team leader who was of a higher rank. Under the 'rules' this isn't allowed. Both were interviewed, denied the relationship and they continued flying. Within months of that interview both had resigned from the Red Arrows. The female pilot has quit flying and has a ground job. Her fiancee -they are engaged to be married, has quit the RAF and is working for Lockheed. So, here's to a happy future! Just one question: Do these two represent a good return on investment? Perhaps others more knowledgeable than me can give a value to the cost of an RAF pilot's training? It doesn't seem to represent good value for the British taxpayer.
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6 years 11 months

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In the RAF there is a two rank rule for regulars i.e. a Flying Officer is OK to see a Squadron leader so no problem there as I believe she was a Ft Lt and he as a Sqn Ld the problem was they were on the same unit which is not allowed and if they lied about the relationship when questioned at best it would be a demotion for both parties and no hope of a promotion in the Future which is why he probably left as for cost of a Pilot it was around 3 million some years back
Profile picture for user Freehand

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7 years 5 months

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Surprised there isn't a service contract. "We train you to fly, but you have to give us x-amount of years service." The USMA at West Point has or had a stipulation that you had to give the Army five years of service after graduation.

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8 years 6 months

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Re 3 Surprised ? So am I - and out of pocket. Still, did anyone think that Equal Opportunites and PC would be cheap?

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6 years 11 months

Posts: 976

Re 3 Surprised ? So am I - and out of pocket. Still, did anyone think that Equal Opportunites and PC would be cheap?
Flt Lt Moore has done a operational Tornado tour and a tour as an Hawk instructor and has flown over 1500 hours so has done her bit it is not unheard of to do two fling tours and ground tour before flying again
Profile picture for user giganick1

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10 years 2 months

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@Freehand there is!!!!!

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8 years 10 months

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Flt Lt Moore has done a operational Tornado tour and a tour as an Hawk instructor and has flown over 1500 hours so has done her bit it is not unheard of to do two fling tours and ground tour before flying again
Agreed. Every military demo team that I am aware of pulls their pilots from operationally experienced folks. For the Blues, the organization I am the most familiar with, it typically is part way through your first "shore tour" (ie after their first operational/nugget sea tour) before you get selected.....or even later. So figure a guy/gal has at least 1000 if not 1500+ military flight hours, an operational tour, as well as most likely some form of instructor shore tour under their belt before even being selected. I guess whether or not they have provided a good return on investment by that point is a matter of debate, but I would argue that they have.