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RAF service numbers

Old 5th Sep 2023, 21:04
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I enlisted as an Officer Cadet at South Cerney in '61, we (young) ex civilians had 423 followed by numbers up to a seven figure number, the former airmen , brats etc as Officer Cadets retained their original numbers. We didn't have any letters attached - I think that came later.
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Old 5th Sep 2023, 21:36
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Ditto. I joined as an Officer Cadet in 1955 with a seven figure number starting 417
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 07:03
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IIRC the letter was a check item on the correctness of the entered number on a computer based system , which also then displayed your Service origin. It failed hilariously on my and many friends' cases. From being an ex RAFC Cadet I was identified as a Commissioned NCO -(well we were technically airmen initially)
The Service history print outs thus generated were fun reading..........
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 08:39
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Similar to NRU74 and Brakedwell. Joined Dec '64, with a 423 number and no prefix/suffix. Left in '76 and joined the VR(T) in '84, retaining the old number, still with no letters
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 11:34
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Joined initially as a cadet pilot on a UAS in 77 and almost immediately changed to a Cadetship. At that time all UAS numbers began with 262 followed by another number; 5 for me on ELUAS. Had my cadetship started at Cranwell, it would have been different, but I maintained mine. So, I guess there was some logic to their issue. A letter suffix (for officers) appeared a few years later, airmen having had a prefix previously.

Re dog tags. As above, I initially had the green and maroon coloured one which were worn on my flying suit. Whether true or not, it was said one to survive fire and one to survive chemicals …..(?). Come the Gulf War, they changed to metal on a chain with the addition of blood group. Hope that helps a little.

Me
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 14:53
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I take it they looked like the image below? (image found on search engine)

I joined in mid '87 and was B828****

I was given a set like this in '89, then mine were replaced by metal ones in the'90's I think.

I was told once that they were made out of vulcanised asbestos fibre. Both were worn and in the event of you being killed the red tag was removed and the green one was left with the body, if there was enough time it was to placed in the mouth.

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Old 6th Sep 2023, 17:07
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IIRC One ws acid resistant, the other fire resistant.........
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 17:22
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I joined as a direct Entrant at the beginning of '68 - first course NOT to go to South Cerney. My number was (Is!) 8024***
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 17:51
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Originally Posted by Haraka
IIRC One ws acid resistant, the other fire resistant.........
I believe they were both the same material, the disc would go into the admin system to prove death, and the lozenge with two holes stayed with the body. If worn correctly the disc would have been fastened to the lower hole on the lozenge, and the upper hole on the lozenge was fastened around the neck.
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 17:56
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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Back in 1957 when the earth was still cooling, 87th Entry at Locking were all 6 digit numbers. 683***.
When the RAF discovered the computer, a two character prefix was added. FO683***.
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Old 6th Sep 2023, 21:44
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Further to Plans123's image. Having joined in 1978 I was not issued with these until my first RAFG tour at Wildenrath in the early '80's. They were to be worn only during TACEVAL or the real event. Despite them being fireproof/bulletproof/radiationproof they were fastened around the neck on a piece of string.
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Old 7th Sep 2023, 11:23
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Gopher01

Joined in 1965, second entry of Craft apprentices ( 202nd Entry ) and my service number was O1960***, somebody fairly quickly realised this could be read as 01960*** and it was changed to P1960***. I seem to remember it was changed before the next entry formed and as I was well down the alphabet probanly not to many to change after me. What happened to all the other ' O's ' in the entry I am not sure of.
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Old 9th Sep 2023, 10:27
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Originally Posted by ItsonlyMeagain
Joined initially as a cadet pilot on a UAS in 77 and almost immediately changed to a Cadetship. At that time all UAS numbers began with 262 followed by another number; 5 for me on ELUAS. Had my cadetship started at Cranwell, it would have been different, but I maintained mine. So, I guess there was some logic to their issue. A letter suffix (for officers) appeared a few years later, airmen having had a prefix previously.

Re dog tags. As above, I initially had the green and maroon coloured one which were worn on my flying suit. Whether true or not, it was said one to survive fire and one to survive chemicals …..(?). Come the Gulf War, they changed to metal on a chain with the addition of blood group. Hope that helps a little.

Me
I joined in 81 and I had a 262 number, preceded by an L ,IIRC.
One day, on visiting the SSQ to see the MO about an ailment, I was promoted to Corporal.
The female MO having never come across the C/P abbreviation!
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Old 10th Sep 2023, 05:09
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Similar to Teeters; direct entry in 1971 with 802****. As Officer Cadet I think the letter was on the front and moved to the end on commissioning. No shiny dogtags at all, just the asbestos lozenges.
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Old 10th Sep 2023, 08:53
  #35 (permalink)  

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Originally Posted by bonajet
Similar to Teeters; direct entry in 1971 with 802****. As Officer Cadet I think the letter was on the front and moved to the end on commissioning. No shiny dogtags at all, just the asbestos lozenges.
As per mine; @#14

I think my “dog tags” were issued during basic flying training in ‘77, rather than immediately on commissioning, to be clipped to flying overall) and the metal one being issued quite some time after that.
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Old 11th Sep 2023, 11:37
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I joined up in March 1951 with my service number beginning with 406***


No. 7 School of Recruit Training (RAF Bridgnorth). 20 Flight, Hut 245 dated 10th May 1951.

On the 4th April 1951 I arrived at No. 7 School of Recruit Training (RAF Bridgnorth) for six weeks of “square-bashing.” This nearly end of square bashing photo is of 20 Flight, Hut 245 and is dated 10th May 1951.

WT
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Old 11th Sep 2023, 12:00
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Were you the only one without a webbing belt ?
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Old 11th Sep 2023, 12:07
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No not me!
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Old 11th Sep 2023, 15:58
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Proper uniforms, those No 2s, even if they were a bit itchy when new.
Only two or three managed to master shaping the new-fangled beret by the look of it, though!
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Old 11th Sep 2023, 16:27
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812 was mine March 76 at Swinditz, first letter was pretty much meaningless, it was just one up from last person... as an example (not mine) the first got A8124 then 001 next person got B8124 002 and on.


You could look on facebook as there are groups asking were you part of a specific group etc, like were you at Swindditz in March 76 and were in the 812 range?.
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