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Mallet Blow Exercises

Volume 170: debated on Friday 30 March 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list for the years 1975 to 1989 (a) the number of Mallet Blow exercises, (b) the number of missions in each exercise, (c) the types of aircraft involved in each and (d) the accidents involving low flying in each exercise.

Exercise Mallet Blow was not introduced until 1980. Records of exercises since that date have not been retained in their entirety. I am able, however, to supply the following details of Mallet Blow exercises since 1984:

ExerciseMissions flownOffensive aircraft types1
Mallet Blow 84/166A-10, Harrier, Jaguar, Tornado, F-111
Mallet Blow 84/242A-10, Jaguar, Harrier, Tornado, F-111
Mallet Blow 84/3139A-10, F-111, Draken, Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier
Mallet Blow 84/483Draken, Tornado, A-10, F-111, Harrier, Jaguar
Mallet Blow 85/177Harrier, Tornado, Jaguar, F16, A-10, F-111, Dracken, Buccaneer
Mallet Blow 85/288Jaguar, Tornado, Harrier, F-16, Draken, RF-4, F-111
Mallet Blow 85/373Tornado, Jaguar, Draken, F-111, Harrier, A-10
Mallet Blow 86/142Harrier, Tornado, Jaguar, Draken, F-111
Mallet Blow 86/2123Tornado, Harrier, Jaguar, F-16, F-111, Buccaneer
Mallet Blow 86/363Jaguar, Harrier, Tornado, Draken, F-5, F-16, F-111, Mirage, F-18
Mallet Blow 86/485Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier
Mallet Blow 87/160Tornado, Harrier, Jaguar, Drakm, F-111
Mallet Blow 87/2133Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier, F-16, F-111
Mallet Blow 87/312Harrier, F-111, Tornado, Jaguar
Mallet Blow 88/186Tornado, Harrier, Jaguar, Draken, F-111
Mallet Blow 88/2100Tornado, Harrier, Jaguar, F-111
Mallet Blow 89/174Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier, Draken, A-10
Mallet Blow 89/2193Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier, F-111, F-16, F-18
1 A number of other support aircraft (tankers, air defence fighters and airborne early-warning aircraft) participate in Mallet Blow exercises but these do not take part in low-level flying in the Otterburn area.
There have been two major accidents to low-flying aircraft involved in Mallet Blow exercises: a German air force Tornado aircraft crashed during Mallet Blow 86/4, and two RAF Harrier aircraft collided in mid-air during Mallet Blow 87/3.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the bases where aircraft involved in the Mallet Blow exercise from 26 to 31 March will fly from.

Aircraft participating in Exercise Mallet Blow 90/1 from 26 to 30 March 1990 will fly from the following bases:

  • RAF Brize Norton
  • RAF Coltishall
  • RAF Coningsby
  • RAF Cottesmore
  • RAF Honington
  • RAF Leeming
  • RAF Leuchars
  • RAF Linton-on-Ouse
  • RAF Marham
  • RAF Waddington
  • RAF Wattisham
  • RAF Wittering
  • A & AEE Boscombe Down
  • RAF Alconbury
  • RAF Bentwaters
  • RAF Lakenheath
  • RAF Upper Heyford
  • RAF Bruggen
  • RAF Laarbruch
  • RAF Gutersloh
  • GAF B├╝chel
  • GAF Bremgarten
  • GAF Leck
  • GAF Norvenich
  • NAEWF Geilenkirchen

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is the estimated cost of the Mallet Blow exercise from 26 to 31 March.

The full costs of individual exercises are not kept centrally and their calculation would involve disproportionate cost and effort.