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Air Cadets grounded?

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Air Cadets grounded?

Old 14th Jul 2016, 10:52
  #2721 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: UK
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Originally Posted by Pegasus107 View Post
Why are people stuck on the fact that cadets only get 'gliding' wings, what about ACPS wings?!?!

There are still ACPS courses going on, in fact uptake for these courses is strong.

Its not just about gliders.........
How many per year as a ratio of the cadet population?
How does that compare with the past ratio of gliding wings?
Ottama2 is offline  
Old 14th Jul 2016, 10:59
  #2722 (permalink)  
 
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Location: northofwhereiusedtobe
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Genuinely interested in a high-flying career? Why not aim for one of nearly 140 light aircraft courses available to air cadets each year at Tayside Aviation in Dundee?

A further 27 places are available at the Air Experience Flights (AEF) embedded with the RAF’s University Air Squadrons across the UK. Take a look at our map to find your nearest AEF.
Yes for 167 lucky cadets it is a wonderful scheme,but it was always easier to get a place on a gliding course and go solo - and arguably a much richer experience than power flying for cadets.
Power flying and gliding are totally different experiences and ACPS courses really are for a tiny percentage of the total cadet numbers.
longer ron is offline  
Old 14th Jul 2016, 13:44
  #2723 (permalink)  
 
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When I was a young cadet the ratio of powered flying scholarship's and glider training must have been at least two hundred to one, on top of this the gliding schools were located all over the country, indeed I rode my bike to Kenley, on top of this the involvement in the total operation and the physical activity from sun up to sun down was extreme, I for one slept like a log at the end of each day and as a distance runner I was in pretty fair shape to begin with. Also this the powered courses seemed to go to those from rather elite schools rather than us from les well healed part of the population, probably not so today methinks? Regardless of these factors, for crying out load get rid of the dead wood and get the kids back in the air!
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Old 14th Jul 2016, 21:39
  #2724 (permalink)  
 
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Not Missing what you never had

CLUNK The sad fact is incoming Cadets will never know what is lost to them.
The reason this thread has run for so long is because 'like you' and indeed me in a slightly later era we experienced a life changing opportunity without realising it at the time. Thousands of ordinary youngsters engaged in an activity that allowed them to fly a mil reg glider SOLO.Those like myself that were able to continue as Staff Cadets; and indeed Instructors, gained an experience and a first class entry into decision making and (unknown at the time) responsibility and organisation. We were given a huge amount of leeway in operating equipment and the running of an airfield so no wonder when we finally eased into the real world of employment nothing seemed impossible. There are thousands of us still out there who were given this opportunity, and are downright angry that such crass incompetence of the 'paid staff' have destroyed a wonderful organisation that was World Class. Just today i was lying on the grass under an aircraft fitting on a tow cable and thinking it all started 55 YEARS AGO at Kenley, and how lucky i was that i had the chance to have that opportunity. And whats on offer Part Task Trainers; might as well lay in a bath with a lap top, what a joke.
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Old 15th Jul 2016, 11:16
  #2725 (permalink)  
 
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Venture Adventure

Hi Pobjoy

While you were fitting on a tow cable I was at 5,000 feet over the beautiful South Downs of the UK doing my 5 hours to complete my BGA Silver C badge. I managed my silver height last week whilst at Aston Down! Now to many glider pilots this Silver C award is just a small milestone (stepping stone to greater things) but to me it was finishing something started many years ago with 615 Gliding School at Kenley. Took me 48 years, but I did it!!

I achieved my silver C distance (60km) from RAF Kenley in an Air Cadet Swallow in April 1968. Achieving something like this with the Air Cadets was considered unusual in that the Air Cadet gliding movement then had 6 Swallows for instructor "advanced" training. These Swallows did the rounds of the gliding schools but we were only allocated our six week "slot" every two years - invariably during the winter!!

I spent 20+ excellent years at Kenley, and like you, consider it home. I actually flew at Kenley with Surrey Hills Gliding Club in February of this year, trying to maintain my winching currency. Sadly not with the Air Cadets, their hanger looked very forlorn and unused. I looked at my log book and realised that my last flight there was 39 years ago!!

So after a busy career, bringing up a family and holding down a mortgage I am now retired and enjoying getting back into gliding after a 23 year "break".

My love for gliding/flying has never left me and is all down to the two days I spent at Hawkinge in 1959 getting my A & B with the Air Cadets. ( I actually spent five days there but did my A & B in the first two days, so did not get to fly again that week). Following on from this I managed to achieve a Flying Scholarship at Biggin Hill - many thanks again to the Air Cadets.

Perhaps we should get the new Prime Minister, Theresa May, to kick some arse/sack those responsible for the current, ongoing, debacle to ensure that Venture Adventure puts back what is missing from the Air Cadets - "Air"

Last edited by Frelon; 15th Jul 2016 at 11:59. Reason: Misspelt the name of our new Prime Minister!
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Old 15th Jul 2016, 11:33
  #2726 (permalink)  
 
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Pobjoy,Thank you for so very eloquently expressing what I and many others are feeling these days! This side of the pond we sometimes watch the BBC, last week there was some bod complaining about the youth in the UK being without direction and aims in life, no s---t Shylock! I for one would have finished up as a "guest" of Her Majesty in some delightful institute without the boost given to me by the ATC, in particular the gliding program, alas, we have beaten this to death by now, but it seems that vested interests and egos are in the way of fixing the problem. We will be in the UK at the end of the month attending the Moth fly in at Old Warden, a huge percentage of attendees at a similar gathering last year had in fact been members of the ATC and started their careers in those little wooden gliders, they were clear in stating that without the ATC gliding program they would never have aspired to owning an aircraft. Maybe we could meet there and try to get the press on side?
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Old 15th Jul 2016, 15:48
  #2727 (permalink)  
 
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OK, this may stick in some throats but.....

Like many, I miss the good old days chasing gliders all over the airfield (RAF Catterick), frosty mornings, winches that struggled with the Barge (even worse when the first plastic-fantastics came along), hands torn to shreds having repaired cables, wet feet, washing gliders with cold water in the dark, the cold, more cold, and the absolute euphoria brought about by a single 5-6 minute circuit. I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT and would return to those days at an instant. But, that just isn't going to happen. Let's get over it and do the best we can, with what we have, for our cadets. If the best you can do is reminisce about the past and bitch about the various heads that should roll, then perhaps it is time to move-on. Aren't those of us in the 'front-line' in the business of setting an example to the kids?
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Old 15th Jul 2016, 16:20
  #2728 (permalink)  
 
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Cows getting bigger, Why is it not going to happen? The only obstruction I see preventing the Cadet Gliding program rising from the ashes is the WRONG folks are calling the shots,, just put the whole mess into the hands of the volunteer's who ran it so well in the past, and hand the maintenance over to one of many organisations who have a history of quality work in the glider/GA field. If the likes of my wife and I managed to run six flight schools and a charter operation, safely and successfully ,surely within the industry in Britain there must be enough talent to mange such a simple flight operation! As for setting an example to the kids, the example being set at this time hardly seems the right one.
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Old 15th Jul 2016, 22:11
  #2729 (permalink)  
 
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Frelon
While you were fitting on a tow cable I was at 5,000 feet over the beautiful South Downs of the UK doing my 5 hours to complete my BGA Silver C badge. I managed my silver height last week whilst at Aston Down! Now to many glider pilots this Silver C award is just a small milestone (stepping stone to greater things) but to me it was finishing something started many years ago with 615 Gliding School at Kenley. Took me 48 years, but I did it!!
I just wanted to say - congratulations on your Silver Badge
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Old 16th Jul 2016, 14:27
  #2730 (permalink)  
 
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I flew a Silver C at North Hill 3 years back, but the bl****dy recorder did not play the game. Friend in the other Junior flew his at the same time and the recorder worked! Nice to know I have flown the trip, even nicer to have the certificate! That was also having come back to gliding after 4x years!
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Old 16th Jul 2016, 19:59
  #2731 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
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Some of us have tried to move on and help the new organisation despite our squadrons being closed. We have volunteered to move to those that have survived the cull. But after two months of being told of our transfer we have yet to hear from either our new SQN's or 2FTS. It seems that maybe our services are not as needed as we were lead to believe.....
Time to move on and find something more constructive to do with our time. In the words of Douglas Adams 'So long and thanks for all the fish'...
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Old 20th Jul 2016, 13:16
  #2732 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Chris Gains View Post
Some of us have tried to move on and help the new organisation despite our squadrons being closed. We have volunteered to move to those that have survived the cull. But after two months of being told of our transfer we have yet to hear from either our new SQN's or 2FTS. It seems that maybe our services are not as needed as we were lead to believe.....
Time to move on and find something more constructive to do with our time. In the words of Douglas Adams 'So long and thanks for all the fish'...
Your gaining unit won't have been given any contact details for you, probably best to contact the OC/adj of where you intend to move to and initiate your transfer with your loosing OC
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Old 20th Jul 2016, 20:04
  #2733 (permalink)  
 
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Transferring should be relatively straightforward. Loosing unit transfers personnel to new one on Bader. The paperwork catches up ...... Eventually!
.
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Old 20th Jul 2016, 20:31
  #2734 (permalink)  
 
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Coms have been attempted by myself and others but replies have not been forthcoming.
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Old 20th Jul 2016, 20:58
  #2735 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Chris Gains View Post
Coms have been attempted by myself and others but replies have not been forthcoming.
Depends where you're trying to go I guess, either you're using a pseudonym here are aren't on the lists!?!?
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Old 22nd Jul 2016, 22:04
  #2736 (permalink)  
 
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Angel What a waste!

Having been associated with Cadet gliding now for some 60 years ending up with the privilege of commanding the top school in the country. It is with great sadness and disbelief that the organisation has deteriorated to an almost nil, real aviation one. My early experiences were the true feeling of flight, lifting my bottom off the ground in a flying machine that I would be controlling on my own. All this was being provided by the Air Training Corps for free. It was this experience that persuaded me to attempt to give service back to the organisation and cadets of the future. Sadly this seems to have gone down the pan along with any hope for the future. Maybe ‘Chilcot’ will be asked to do a report on what has brought this sorry state of affairs about. His previous report conclusions seem to follow along the same lines as what has happened the Cadet / RAF Training Organisation.
For my two-penny worth they seem to have missed some important points.
• Why solely go for cable launching gliders? This is a backward step when airfields are reducing in the UK and those that are open and willing to take gliding do not want cables wrecking their airfields. Transfer from Burtonwood to Samlesbury would not have taken place nor would Sealand to Woodvale be possible with out self-launching gliders.
• Doing away with the volunteer element also spells doom for a very cost effective operation. The spread of schools (sorry Squadrons) across the country meant reduced travelling time and hence fatigue. Centralising into smaller locations no matter what the accommodation, means weather will play an important part in complete cessation of flying some weekends. Ie not cost effective.
• Air experience although important, does not come up to a young person actually taking control of one of Her Majesties Aircraft. Giving them self control and responsibility for the future. Who are going to push and handle the cable-launched gliders over 2-5 days missing regular schooling? I cannot see paid RAF personnel doing this. Having new 6 drum winches will therefore be unnecessary as the manpower to serve them would not be there.
• Although lip service has been given to retaining some of the Vigilants it is obvious they will be disbanded within a short time. Who will maintain them in the mean time and if they can find someone to do this why not repair or renew them? What about having apprenticeships in GRP manufacturing employing cadets?
• Set up a proper procurement organisation with follow through procedures and monitoring systems and most importantly “value for money criteria”.

I am sorry to have gone on and vented my spleen, but I do feel qualified after so many years of involvement with what was a unique organisation.

One good thing out of all this is that all the redundant volunteers will no doubt be now joining the “FOGGIES” (Former Old Gliding Instructors Extension Society).
For information their email address is [email protected].

Please note however that the views above are not the official views of FOGIES merely an astonished observation from one who started life with the Air Cadets clad in a dog collar hairy uniform.
Burtonwood Aviator is offline  
Old 23rd Jul 2016, 06:06
  #2737 (permalink)  
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Apparrently they've given up on fixing any more vigs and only 5 vikkings done and months for any more. Rumour around the boys from someone in the know that best case is only three schools will now come back and big cheeses are even considering pulling the plug totally and paying other glidding and flying clubs to do scholarships and stuff.
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 07:25
  #2738 (permalink)  
 
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CCCC -if you are on here could you please e-mail or PM me - on a different topic. Have lost your e-mail address.


Thanks W/RAFA Sud Ouest)
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 09:23
  #2739 (permalink)  
 
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Burtonwood Aviator. Well sad; You must be BT; I m MJA!!i
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Old 23rd Jul 2016, 11:06
  #2740 (permalink)  
 
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Indeed, well said Burtonwood Aviator.

When you say
Maybe ‘Chilcot’ will be asked to do a report on what has brought this sorry state of affairs about.
may I recommend the Nimrod Review by Charles Haddon-Cave QC. In your mind, substitute "Nimrod" with "gliders" and it says it all. The necessary internal reports were written many years ago and buried, but when handed to H-C he lent his support to their conclusions. You will see that, if implemented, this sorry state of affairs would have been avoided.
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