Temporary Pause of Battle of Britain Memorial Flight

The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) has been temporarily grounded by the Royal Air Force following the tragic death of pilot Squadron Leader Mark Long in a Spitfire crash at RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire. The incident occurred just before 1.20pm on Saturday, prompting the RAF to halt all BBMF aircraft from flying while an investigation into the crash is conducted.

Tributes to Pilot Mark Long

Squadron Leader Mark Long, who had been a pilot at Coningsby for four years, was described as a “great friend, colleague, and a passionate, professional aviator” by Group Captain Robbie Lees. Mr. Long, who started flying as a child and eventually piloted the Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jet, will be deeply missed by his colleagues. Tributes poured in from the Prince and Princess of Wales, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer following his tragic death.

Investigation and Response

Lincolnshire Police confirmed that Mr. Long was the sole occupant of the aircraft and unfortunately died at the scene of the crash. The RAF expressed gratitude to personnel and emergency services for their swift response. The investigation into the cause of the crash is ongoing, and the BBMF displays scheduled for the near future have been put on hold. Our thoughts remain with Mark’s family and friends during this difficult time.

In conclusion, the temporary pause of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight has sparked an outpouring of tributes for pilot Squadron Leader Mark Long, whose tragic death has deeply impacted the aviation community.