Red, white and blue makeover for plane used by PM unveiled

The respray cost almost £1 million but would ‘promote the UK around the world’, officials said.

RAF Voyager
RAF Voyager

The new paint job costing almost £1 million on the plane used by the Prime Minister has been unveiled.

The RAF Voyager – which was previously a military grey colour – has been resprayed in white, with a Union flag on the tailfin and United Kingdom written in gold on the fuselage.

Boris Johnson had previously complained about the military paint scheme used on the jet.

But the cost of the respray was condemned by opposition politicians when it was revealed earlier this month.

Downing Street said the work would cost “around £900,000” and would mean that the plane could better represent the UK around the world with “national branding”.

Officials have insisted the plane would still be able to fulfil its military role as an air-to-air refuelling tanker.

RAF Voyager paint makeover
The RAF Voyager (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

At the time the price tag was revealed, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “That incorporates the cost of creating a design that will promote the UK around the world without compromising the plane’s vital military role.

“At every stage we have worked to ensure value for money for the UK taxpayer and all of the work has been undertaken in the UK, directly benefiting British suppliers.”

Mr Johnson has previously questioned why the plane was grey, saying he would like to have a “Brexit plane” to help him travel the world and promote the Government’s vision of global Britain.

RAF Voyager paint makeover
The plane was previously a military grey colour (Steve Parsons/PA)

He also complained in 2018 while foreign secretary that the RAF Voyager jet, which is shared by the Prime Minister, senior Cabinet members and the royal family, “never seems to be available”.

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