HC Deb 30 March 1979 vol 965 c412W
Mr. Trotter

asked the Secretary of State for Defence to what extent the additional fighter aircraft to be introduced into the RAF's front line represents the aircraft made available following the disbandment of the Fleet Air Arm fighter squadron following the scrapping of HMS "Ark Royal"; and if there will be any more fighter aircraft available in total than there were before the Fleet Air Arm squadron was withdrawn from service.

Mr. Wellbeloved

The transfer of the "Ark Royal's" Phantom aircraft to the RAF does not increase the total number of fighters, but permits a rationalisation of Phantom stocks which will enable the RAF to assign the equivalent of an extra half squadron of fighters to NATO compared with the previous combined RAF and RN assignments.

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