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Air Cadets grounded?

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Air Cadets grounded?

Old 12th Apr 2016, 14:36
  #2261 (permalink)  
 
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I can't comment on the accuracy of the alleged failings by contractors, but I do know that many similar cases in the past have resulted in MoD taking no action and swallowing the cost, even after fatal accidents. The contractor has a ready-made defence if it can demonstrate any laxity in MoD's application of their own regulations. The obvious first question is - is there a stable and maintained build standard against which the work is to be conducted? As Chug has alluded to, the chances of this are somewhere south of zero. Ergo, there will be no valid safety case. This is all very familiar.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 17:53
  #2262 (permalink)  
 
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Westminster Hall - Anyone had any reports on the debate?
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 18:38
  #2263 (permalink)  
 
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Air Cadets grounded

Try this:

Parliamentlive.tv - Westminster Hall
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 18:57
  #2264 (permalink)  
 
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To save anybody from needing to waste time viewing, I think referring to this as a debate might be something of an overstatement. I think it would be much fairer to say that the minister simply re-iterated the statement released a few weeks ago.

Sadly, but I suppose predictably, he didn't specifically address any issues or questions raised since the announcement.

He also repeatedly referred to 'simulators', and from his no doubt vast experience, attested on more than one occasion to how realistic they were and that they would form a core part of Cadets' training.

I don't think this 'debate' was ever really intended to be much more than an opportunity to say that the issue had been discussed; 30 minutes with non 'subject matter experts' is clearly not going to do anything to reverse any decisions made.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 19:16
  #2265 (permalink)  
 
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Air Cadets grounded

Yes. Mostly waffle and no actual debate as far as I could see!
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 19:18
  #2266 (permalink)  
 
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Airbus38 ...

Totally agree. There was an opportunity at 14 mins, when a 'sharp minded' MP could have asked 'HOW' did the Air Cadet Glider Fleet become UNSERVICEABLE in the first place ... But NO !

The Minister's comments on the 'simulators' (NOT) just proved that he had fallen for the 'pretty lights' show when he recently visited 2FTS
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 20:50
  #2267 (permalink)  
 
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An absolute travesty - debate? it was anything but. Where were the questions from our representatives on how this came about? Who were the culprits? Why has no one been prosecuted? A whitewash.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 23:22
  #2268 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ACW342 View Post
An absolute travesty - debate? it was anything but. Where were the questions from our representatives on how this came about? Who were the culprits? Why has no one been prosecuted? A whitewash.
Still we don't get told what was alleged to be wrong with the Vigilants particularly and also the Vikings. And in the age that we build major airframe assemblies for Airbus, " we cannot source a contractor to fix the Vigilants " . Can we please have some hard copy of what were the engineering major issues please ?.

The whole thing is massive cover up and b--------.

This Westminster bullshitter was a disgrace.
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 08:16
  #2269 (permalink)  
 
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ACW342, the Ministers meeting with Jim Shannon could be more interesting , your old boss John McA may be going with him
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 09:02
  #2270 (permalink)  
 
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My experience with Ministers and MP's (and I have had a quite a bit) is that they believe what they are told. They are not SME's, and quite often they have no knowledge of the Ministry in which they are placed (since George Osborne is neither an Accountant or has ever actually had a proper job - I kid you not).

They have no option but to believe what they are told, and they act accordingly. In a lot of ways the CEO of many large companies are the same. They expect the people under them to be the expert (like they are paid for), be honest and professional in their dealings. In public service supposedly, even more so.

In this case that has sadly not been the case. It's quite clear that no-one with knowledge of ACO Gliding or Engineering has really been near the decision making process for this one. Underpinned by weak contract management practice (the MoD was always like that anyway) this was doomed from the start. Personal interests, Personal Agendas and Personalities have all been at work here.

I think I can hear the lid being nailed down on this one now to stop the skeletons getting out.

Just so sad, and unnecessary.

I will of course be putting in a bid for one of the incredibly well maintained Vigilants when they come up for sale if the Personal interests, Personal Agendas and Personalities don't do a TSR2 on them to prevent the evidence from surfacing..................but in world where the Government can sell off the UK Gold reserves below market price or publicly owned bank shares below the value with no questions asked, who would be surprised if a few motorgliders quitely arrived on the fire dump or Shoebury Ranges...............
Arc

Last edited by Arclite01; 14th Apr 2016 at 09:05. Reason: but in a world
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 09:23
  #2271 (permalink)  
 
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Air Cadets continue to be grounded!

Yes. Mostly waffle and no actual debate as far as I could see!
An absolute disgrace I wonder how much this "debate" cost? Probably could have covered the cost of fixing at least two Vikings
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 14:06
  #2272 (permalink)  
 
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Following the so called 'Debate' at Westminster Hall yesterday ... I have sent this to my MP today ...

Dear Mr Merriman …

I watched carefully the debate held yesterday at Westminster Hall entitled ‘Future of Gliding and the Air Cadet Organisation’

Parliamentlive.tv - Westminster Hall

I would have liked to write direct to the Minister, Julian Brazier, but it is clear from his Constituency Web Site that he only replies to correspondence emanating from a Kent Constituency Postal Address. I am therefore writing to you to seek an answer to a very specific question about this issue as my MP.

There has, as yet, been no satisfactory explanation as to ‘How and Why’ the entire Air Cadet Glider Fleet (of some 146 aircraft) suddenly became un-airworthy/un-serviceable which necessitated the ‘Grounding’ of the entire fleet for some two years. I’m afraid I don’t have the detail on the original Total CapEx Spend back in the early 90’s for the 81 Grob Viking Gliders and 65 Grob Vigilant Motor Gliders, but I’m informed that the Vikings alone cost c. £7m when acquired some 25 years ago … so in total, for the entire fleet of 146 aircraft, a not insignificant original investment by the MOD/RAF.

So as a UK Tax Payer I believe I’m entitled to ask for an explanation as to ‘How and Why’ the entire Air Cadet Gliding Fleet became un-airworthy/un-serviceable.

I’m aware from Hansard that Serco was awarded a ‘Glider Maintenance Contract’ of £9.4m for a seven year period from Feb 2008 to Mar 2015. Without prejudice I ask … Did the contractor fail to provide the service they were contracted to supply, either through poor engineering practice or record keeping ? Did the MOD/RAF fail to effectively ‘Supervise’ and/or ‘Oversee’ the contractors work ? Or was it a combination of both these possibilities or were there other reasons ?

To be clear, I’m well acquainted with the detail of the proposed current ‘Recovery Programme’ put forward by the MOD/RAF, and whilst these plans are most lamentable, they can detract attention away from the specific question I have asked above.

Yours sincerely
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 16:21
  #2273 (permalink)  
 
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Questions for MP's

Well done CoffmanStarter, my MP has not even responded ! But this is the single most important question that MUST be answered for the benefit of us taxpayers and the totally banjaxed VGS staff.
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 21:37
  #2274 (permalink)  
 
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It seems to me that the only way those in control are going to genuinely listen is if all instructors refuse to volunteer their services. Including those on schools which will remain open. No staff - what are they going to do?
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 22:51
  #2275 (permalink)  
 
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I liked the suggestion, on CAC's FB page, to grow trees to commemorate the 75th anniversary - could I suggest ash, spruce and balsa - that way at least in 20 years time there'd be enough wood to build a fleet of new gliders.


7700
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 23:03
  #2276 (permalink)  
 
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In the meantime the saplings can be sheltered by a screen of glass fibre replicas of trees.
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Old 15th Apr 2016, 08:31
  #2277 (permalink)  
 
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or tree simulators............................


Arc
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Old 15th Apr 2016, 08:33
  #2278 (permalink)  
 
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The formal record of the 'debate' on Wednesday of this week at Westminster Hall ...

Hansard : Air Cadet Organisation and Gliding
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Old 15th Apr 2016, 10:33
  #2279 (permalink)  
 
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Such an in depth debate......

"look at the shiny, shiny"

Frankie Boyle quote from Mock the Week seems very apt as they've been seduced by a swish looking PTT.

Seems you can learn Ab Initio on a Simulat....sorry PTT.
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Old 15th Apr 2016, 12:08
  #2280 (permalink)  
 
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Big Carpet Job

ARC has it summed up.
With all the top brass in total denial (and ignorance) who is going to make that 'searching' investigation as to the root cause of the debacle.
Ministers know absolutely nothing about the subject and even the VSO's are limited in their knowledge about how the system 'COULD' work.
Had we had a 'can do-er' at 2FTS guiding the situation then it may have been possible to have steered a better solution,but as his agenda did not fit in with how the VGS operates then there was no hope that there was ever going to be a rapid return to ops. In fact Cmt2FTS does have a heavy responsibility in all this as he was the point of contact with the VSO's and no doubt has guided them towards the eventual so-called recovery.
With such a dismal and incompetent leadership the situation was never going to get better as the very people that held the key to recovery (the VGS) were kept out of the loop because they were not going to fit in with Cmt 2 FTS plans for the future.
This sorry individual has seen off a system that was World Class in its ability to actually gets Cadets off solo and allow those that were keen to develop enough to keep the system going.
Without LEADERSHIP you have nothing the VGS had it a Squadron level but it failed big time at the next level.

The system was simple; it was run by capable Staff Cadets, however it needed someone equally capable up top to oversee it and this is where it has failed big time.
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