Alex Massie

Great British Moustache Triumph!

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Who dares say the United States never listens to British concerns?

An RAF fighter pilot has won his battle with the United States Air Force over the size of his handlebar moustache.

Flight Lieutenant Chris Ball, who is on an exchange posting with the USAF in Afghanistan was told to trim his distinctive moustache.

The pilot, who is usually based at RAF Lossiemouth, turned to the Queen's Regulations and found the moustache's width did not breach RAF guidelines.

The rules state the moustache should not go below the edge of the mouth.

Despite Flt Lt Ball serving on exchange with the USAF, the RAF still have some say on the attire and appearance of their staff.

The USAF relented and Flt Lt Ball's moustache was left unruffled.

An MoD spokeswoman said: "Queen's Regulations for the RAF (QR209) state that if a moustache is worn, the upper lip is to be unshaven and the moustache is not to extend below the edge of the mouth."

Clearly, the "Special Relationship" endures.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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