Peebles pilot prepares for life with the Red Arrows

New Red Arrows pilots joining the team for the 2014 season are, on the left Flt Lt Stewart Campbell from Peebles and Flt Lt Joe Hourston.
New Red Arrows pilots joining the team for the 2014 season are, on the left Flt Lt Stewart Campbell from Peebles and Flt Lt Joe Hourston.
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A fighter pilot from Peebles has spoken of his pride at being selected for one of the world’s leading display teams, the RAF’s Red Arrows.

Flight Lieutenant Stewart Campbell, who has served in Afghanistan, will be with the aerobatic display team for three years from 2014.

Flt Lt Campbell was picked after impressing during a tough selection process that involved flight tests, interviews and other exercises.

The 33-year-old joined the RAF in 2003 and has been posted to 617 Squadron and flew two operational tours in Afghanistan in Tornado aircraft.

He said: “The Red Arrows represent the pinnacle of fast jet flying and I’m honoured to be joining this famous team.

“They way the team operates and how it represents the air force and UK as a whole, is something I very much wanted to be part of.

“Although, the selection hasn’t sunk in yet, I don’t think I will feel like I’m now a member of the Red Arrows until I taxi out with the team leader and go through the first loops and rolls.”

Flt Lt Campbell, who attended Peebles High School and studied at Edinburgh University, said he had wanted to be a pilot since childhood.

“I’ve had a desire to fly fast jets ever since watching military aircraft conduct low flying training from my classroom window at school”, he said.

The team, which performs worldwide, consists of nine display pilots and 110 support staff. They are based at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire.