An interesting FOI response from the MoD to a question posed by a Mr Jones
Dear Ministry of Defence,
Following the 2010 defence review, the Harrier fleet (RAF GR7/9s) was “scrapped”. Can you kindly advise the total number of serviceable aircraft at the time that decision was made, and what happened to those aircraft, including specific numbers (how many were sold – and to whom, how many were sent for scrap processing, how many have been stored)
Following the Strategic Defence and Security Review published on 19 October 2010 the Harrier fleet retired from service with the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force on 15 December 2010. At that time there were 41 Harrier GR7/GR9 aircraft in the Forward Fleet operated by the Front Line Commands. The Forward Fleet comprises aircraft which are serviceable or short-term unserviceable.
The total number of Harriers in the Departmental Fleet was 77 aircraft. In November 2011 the MOD agreed the sale of Harrier assets to the US Government for $180 million (around £110 million); this figure included 72 Harrier airframes, spares and associated support equipment. When the value of the sale is added to the savings made from retiring the Harrier fleet from service, the total estimated receipts and savings to the MOD is around £1 billion.
Two aircraft were retained by the MOD for training purposes. One is at the RN Air Engineering & Survival School, Gosport and one is at RAF Wittering in Lincolnshire.
The Fleet Air Arm Museum, the RAF Museum and the Imperial War Museum each received one Harrier aircraft in order to preserve the UK’s military heritage.
So there you go