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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

Old 15th Jun 2016, 08:29
  #8741 (permalink)  
 
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Brian 48nav ... ha! Commissioned 1st April '65 here

I shall compose a PM anon.
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Old 15th Jun 2016, 13:18
  #8742 (permalink)  
Danny42C
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Continuing the Digression.

Brian 48nav (your #8735),
...Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken...[Kipling: "If"]...
Drafted a long and well thought out Post to you on Notepad this morning (having learned, from bitter experience, that there is a malevolent gremlin in PPRuNepad which craftily waits till you have almost finished before "losing" all your text beyond human recall). Answer: draft on Notepad, and gremlin can't win, as you've always got it on Notepad to copy/paste again.

Watch out! Gremlin has sussed this out and moved across to Notepad with his knavish tricks. Caught out once or twice. Answer, save text immediately on completion, safe again. But this morning, "senior moment", forgot - disaster!
...And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools...[ibid]...
So here goes:
...so in about 1963 they introduced their own cadet scheme...
IIRC, they took in boys and girls at 18. From MPN11:
...I was rejected for the civil Cadet Scheme in 1964, as the Civil Service Commission were insistent on A-levels and wouldn't budge...
So it seems that they required a higher educational level than the OASB for ATC entry ! Also, I think they would accept applicants up to 35 with 500 hrs as pilot or nav.

Could you confirm that they got their cadets up to PPL as part of the Course ? This would be a most valuable 'perk', and it confirms that the CAA saw value in flying experience. I have said somewhere here that flying experience is a "desirable" but not "necessary" requirement for ATCOs. It enabled them to put themseves in the place of poor Bloggs (hot and bothered, bawled out by a sadistic QFI (in justified fear for both their lives), and so not receptive to their gentle advice fom a comfortable seat in a nice warm Tower.
...and hated the 'factory environment' in the middle of a council estate in West Drayton...
My sentiments exactly ! And where does a poor junior ATCO and his family live (at London prices). In cardboard boxes ?

Your #8740:
...A few weeks back both Danny and you, I think, were promoting display of users' ages for 'orientation' purposes. I explained I used to have my age displayed until a rabid poster, on ATC issues threads, took umbrage with my view on something and suggested I was a coffin-dodger, an expression I took in simple terms to mean that I ought to be dead...
Young (I assume) chap should be horsewhipped ! It is contemptible to mock the afflicted, and when the affliction is old age, stupid as well. I clearly remember a meander in Louth (Lincs) Parish churchyard. An old sarcophagus was tastefully carved with a frieze of skulls, bones, shrouds and skeletons. To drive the message home was an inscription:

As you are now, so once was I
As I am now so will you be

A chill passed over the warm summer afternoon. Your young accuser might ponder the words. Rabid animals are best dealt with by a dose of lead at the back of the neck from a .45 Colt. Take no notice, Brian - "publish and be damned". I've often thought that for members of PPRuNe it should be mandatory to state true age.

Cheers, Danny.
 
Old 15th Jun 2016, 14:56
  #8743 (permalink)  
Danny42C
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BEagle (your #8695 - going back a bit, re Benson),
...One of the tasks of a QFI was either 'Duty Pilot', or going to the Tower to watch your own students during their solo consolidation trips...
For all my times at an AFS, there was always a Duty Instructor in the tower when solo stoods were aloft. He was first call when one of them declared a non-ATC problem. And he could order them, while I could only advise.
...The first time I went there, up in Local was a delightful WRAF officer and her little assistant, quietly looking through some shopping catalogue and chatting. It was great, the assistant kindly fetched me a cup of tea...
Now that's the kind of ATC-ing I like. But the "cup of tea".... One of the (if not the) most important tasks of the Air Traffic Control Assistant is Making the Tea. On the hour, every hour. This is vital for the safe conduct of ATC, as controllers badly need it at regular intervals to lubricate their vocal chords (and calm their shattered nerves after an hour of "the high-speed game of three-dimensional Chess" !) It may have been taught on their Course at Shawbury. If not, it should have been.
...and that they wouldn't mention my 'spirited' departures to anyone important...
Once Harry Talton (my SATCO at Leeming) mused to me: "I wonder if our wives know that their husbands are spending their duty nights on Approach with an attractive girl sleeping only feet away ?" It was true; on a Master Airfield (365/24/7), Approach Controller is (supposed to be) a waking Watch from 1800 to 0800. But the Radar Controller (same hours) at Leeming had a little bunk at the side of the Approach Room, where he/she could be brought into action at a moment's notice if need arose. There was never an occasion (AFAIK) when this circumstance was abused. (I might add that the cubby-hole door had a strong bolt on the inside).

At Thorney Island (also a Master, but not a WRAF station), the Radar bunk room was downstairs on the Ground floor - perhaps Leeming was a one-off.

Be that as it may, I fear all our wives were under the impression (which we did nothing to dispel) that our little playmates were tucked-up safe back in the Mess at these times. Our girls could have "shopped us" at any moment - but the loyal creatures never did, even in their cosy "powder-room" chats. Thank God for that !

Danny.

Last edited by Danny42C; 15th Jun 2016 at 15:04. Reason: Typo.
 
Old 16th Jun 2016, 09:43
  #8744 (permalink)  
 
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Danny

When the civil cadet scheme started it was a 3 year course that commenced at Hurn with ATCA ( assistant ) famil' follow by a PPL course at places like Carlisle and Oxford. Then on to the Aerodrome Course followed by postings around the country to an airfield where the cadet had to pass an endorsement or validation.
Back at Hurn the course then split into 2 with one half training on Approach/Approach Radar and the other on Area/Area radar. Postings to field units followed and once again an endorsement had to be passed.

Back to Hurn again and the reverse happened ( Approach and Area training ). In those days CAA or its predecessors was divided in to 3 regions, Scottish, Northern and Southern and the cadets spent one period of training in each region. Of course there were plenty of units to train at, in Area alone there was Ulster, Highland, Scottish,Border, Northern etc etc - virtually all gone now apart from Swanwick ( London ) and Scottish.

On graduation from the 3 year course a cadet had received a thorough grounding in all disciplines apart from PAR.

Following the '73/74 fuel crisis recruitment ceased for a while and when it restarted cadets did a much shorter course, the flying was cut back to 15 hours, just enough to go solo, and the courses became either Area streamed or Approach streamed. As mentioned earlier my son who joined in '96, only had a short time at an airfield for famil', did just go solo and has spent about 19 years now in London Terminal Control.

I believe no flying experience is given now, another case of the 'bean counters' deciding what the bottom line is! Despite all this I think UK civil ATC is second to none, certainly most pilots seem to breathe a sigh of relief when back in UK airspace! Or so I'm told.
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Old 16th Jun 2016, 10:00
  #8745 (permalink)  
 
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Brian,
to hear the cool calm voice of 'London' after a trying trip 'elsewhere' always lifted the spirits. My A320 pilot grandson is very firmly of the same opinion,
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Old 16th Jun 2016, 10:04
  #8746 (permalink)  
 
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The 1964 Civil Service Commission documentation I have here* includes the following:

The cadet's training will take four years to complete and will be divided into five phases of varying lengths. Three of these phases will begin with a course at the School of Air Traffic Control, Hurn, and examinations will be held in each phase.

At the end of the for years' training, a viva voce examination and practical assessment will finally determine whether the cadet is suitable for promotion to Air Traffic Control Officer.

Cadets may be dismissed at any time during their training if it becomes clear that they are not likely to make successful Air Traffic Control Officers.
The very last para states:
Air Traffic Control Offcer Cadets will be called upon to fly in the course of their training, and no additional allowance will be payable for this.
The contrast with RAF ATCO training at the time is stark! Sixteen weeks on the initial Joint Course, and IIRC another six on the GCA Course ... and away you go into your Unit's OJT system

* Min of Av ATCO Cadets Open Competition 1964
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Old 16th Jun 2016, 12:25
  #8747 (permalink)  
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MPN11 ,
...The contrast with RAF ATCO training at the time is stark! Sixteen weeks on the initial Joint Course...
Thirteen in my day !... ."Welcome aboard", said SATCO Strubby, "You're on Approach Monday afternoon. Flt Lt So-and-so will show you around. Good Luck".

Out on the field the old Bendix (MPN-1) whirred and clanked. But you didn't go on the GCA Course until they were happy with you in the Tower. Think I went early the next year.

It's called "Throwing you in at the Deep End". Luckily, I swam.

Danny.
 
Old 16th Jun 2016, 12:36
  #8748 (permalink)  
 
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Our 16 weeks was padded, for we Direct Entrant Hofficers, by a week (or two?) on the first part of the ATC Assistants' Course. There we learned things at the base level ... starting with phonetic alphabet, etc, and working up to Met forms and Dlight Plans ... stuff that was of course bread and butter to ex-aircrew and SNCO AATCs moving on to controlling.

Being hurled straight on to the Watch Roster is ... scary!!
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Old 16th Jun 2016, 21:38
  #8749 (permalink)  
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MPN11,

I like the idea of "Dlight" Plans (to some warm and congenial Station around the Mediterranean, perhaps ?)

Should be a collection of happy Typos on this Thread. For a starter, I give you "Deadful".(I kid you not). All of us can nominate "deadful" places we've known. Holyhead is one name which springs to mind - but you can think of others.

Danny.
 
Old 17th Jun 2016, 09:41
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Hmm, Holyhead, almost the worst thing about being at Valley.........
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Old 17th Jun 2016, 12:41
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Drearyham - aka East Dereham (as was).

PS - having spent over four very happy years at Valley - I can vouch for Holyhead's delights :0
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 16:35
  #8752 (permalink)  
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MPN11 (your #8719 13th June),
...(I really should start a Thread about "Gaining an ATCO's Certificate of Competency post-WW2" )...
It was a good idea then - and it's a good idea now. Might I suggest: "...A RAF ATCO's..." What do you say, chaps and chapesses ? Nem Con ? All right, the Ayes have it ! All together now:
♫...Why are we wait-ing...♫

Danny.
 
Old 19th Jun 2016, 19:18
  #8753 (permalink)  
 
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Noted, Danny42C ... I humbly await other encouragement before venturing forth.

It would, however, stop me cluttering this significant thread with my ATC meanderings about days gone by.
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 19:36
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I should be interested to hear the view from the other side of the microphone, not least because the fact I am here is largely due to a talk-down controller at St Mawgan in 67/68. We are six T17s on task between Ballykelly and St M when someone listening on HF hears that Shacks are being diverted as far as Gib due to UK going out rapidly in fog. In our lot I am the only "white" card, (which makes it 67) and I get put at the top of the stack. There is NO diversion. My break-off about 860 ft, and the base is being called as 3-500'. Plan is we make one, perhaps 2 attempts with a BO of 300' on the radalt. If unsuccessful, fly over the airfield at 1000' and bang the guys out of the back and then I take the aeroplane out to sea and throw Aunty Betty's aeroplane away. First attempt perfect talkdown, straight down the slot, lights at 300' and land. Could hardly see the "Follow Me". Taxied in, open the door and flt cdr's (ED) first words are "What's your f'ing break off?" Took me on one side told me to consider myself bollocked, and he would buy me the first beer! Sticks in my mind almost 50 years later, and I can still visualise the approach. Did go and thank the controller though.

Last edited by Wander00; 20th Jun 2016 at 12:00. Reason: Plus de vin rouge
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 20:36
  #8755 (permalink)  
Danny42C
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MPN11,
...It would, however, stop me cluttering this significant thread with my ATC meanderings about days gone by...
No such thought entered my mind, Sir ! It is entirely your choice whether you Post, and if so, where and how you choose to do so. And:
...cluttering .......... with my ATC meanderings about days gone by...
Pilots and ATC have been in "double harness", as it were, since the days when a "Duty Pilot" provided "Flying Control". There is a natural affinity between our trades. In any case, as I've often said of this Prince of Threads: "All's grist that comes to this mill".
...about days gone by...
What else is our title about ? WWII ended 71 years ago. You put in an appearance around then !
...I humbly await other encouragement before venturing forth...
Well, you "others", the ball's in your court now. Should he go or should he stay ? (funny, seem's there's a lot of hoo-ha about another question of that sort just at the moment).

Danny.
 
Old 20th Jun 2016, 11:49
  #8756 (permalink)  
 
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ATCO Assistant Under Training (on the job training)


Warmtoast at 5 FTS (RAF Thornhill, S. Rhodesia) 1951)
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Old 20th Jun 2016, 16:22
  #8757 (permalink)  
Danny42C
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Warmtoast,

A fine figure of a man ! The ideal ATC(A), poised for action ! Spotless KD, eyes fixed in thousand-yard stare, finger on button, ready to save his Controller from self-inflicted aircraft disaster and a Fate Worse than Death (posting to Area Radar ?)

Then reality (His Master's Voice) breaks in: "Hoskins, stop gawking through that window, get off your @rse, find my chinagraph, empty the ashtray - and make me a bloody cuppa !"

Ah well.....One day....

Danny.
 
Old 20th Jun 2016, 18:42
  #8758 (permalink)  
 
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How many Map Pins with callsigns written on them can one man cope with?

I need a deconstruction of WTF all that desk is full of, please, Warmtoast.
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Old 20th Jun 2016, 18:52
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If any of the lights flash he has to push the switch that he has got his finger on.
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Old 20th Jun 2016, 20:31
  #8760 (permalink)  
Danny42C
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You can't keep a bad story down !

An old Thread has come back to life:
...PPRuNe Forums > Misc. Forums > Aviation History and Nostalgia
........Spitfires found in Burma..
.
Didn't believe it then and don't believe it now. But there's always one...... (Posted by "maliyahsdad" Page 15 #286 on Thread above):
...Hunt for legendary Spitfires buried in Burma is back on - Birmingham Mail...
Watch this space and enjoy !

Danny.
 

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