The "Blue Eagles" were a Royal Army Corps helicopter aerobatic display team.
The team has normally consisted of one Lynx AH Mk1 helicopter and four Gazelle SA341B helicopters. In contrast to other teams, their leader wasn't the commander of the team. The commander's position was filled by an Army Air Corps officer. The leader flew the Lynx with the call sign of "Eagle 1". An assistant pilot also flew on the Lynx and helped the leader to watch the other helicopters as he performed amazing maneuvers. The technical support for the team was provided by 8 personnel: a manager who made presentations to the audience; a head of land insurance; a head of the vehicles; a photographer; an inspector; an avionics technician and two mechanics.
The "Blue Eagles" show included many and varied formation maneuvers, cross-overs in different directions, etc. The most amazing performances of a loop and wing-over were demonstrated by the Lynx. The team's helicopters did not carry any special team markings but they were equipped with smoke-generators producing orange smoke.
The "Blue Eagles" helicopter aerobatic display team of the British Army Aviation Corps was first formed in the spring of 1968 by five instructors from the Army Aviation School at the base in Middle Wallop. Employing five Bell-47G3B1 Sioux helicopters drawn from the School, the instructors performed demonstrations in their free time during the summer. Their participation in the Farnborough airshow in that same year drew significant attention. Based on the success of their first season, the team received official status. The "Blue Eagles" then took part in various aviation displays in locations such as Iceland, Scotland and Germany until 1974.
However, by this point the Army Corps could not continue to support a standing aerobatic team. Fortunately, a group of enthusiasts from the school in Middle Wallop volunteered to continue with an aerobatic team on a volunteer basis and they practiced in their free time. They changed names several times becoming in succession the "Eagles", "Army Eagles", "Sparrow - Hawks", and "Silver Eagles". They flew in formation with different Army helicopters like the Sioux, Gazelle, Lynx and Scout, and they sometimes flew in formation with other historical fixed-wing aircraft and vintage helicopters.
In 1992, now called the "Eagles", the team had planned to fly four Lynx helicopters but the Army Air Corps perspective was that the Lynx was too vital to other operations. They consequently made the decision to refurnish the team with one Lynx and four Westland / Aerospatiale Gazelle helicopters. This new team became the "Silver Eagles".
In 1994, the team gained its present name of the "Blue Eagles".
In the 2001 season, in a precedent setting appointment, a woman was posted to the team as an aerobatic pilot.
In the 2008 season,in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the creation of the team, the "Blue Eagles" began a new helicopter formation display, including an Apache attack helicopter, a Lynx, a Gazelle, a Scout and an Alouette. This new formation display lasted for just the single season.
The "Blue Eagles" have suspended displays since the 2010 season for financial and operational reasons. Where practicable, they have continued to support events with simple role demonstrations and/or static displays. The intention is to hopefully re-establish the "Blue Eagles" at some point on the display circuit with a new reinvigorated display.