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ISTAR Air Wing stands up at RAF Waddington

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ISTAR Air Wing stands up at RAF Waddington

Old 17th May 2021, 13:56
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ISTAR Air Wing stands up at RAF Waddington




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Old 17th May 2021, 14:09
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Air Commodore in overall charge next 😉
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Old 17th May 2021, 14:11
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Or a posh way of saying we have a glut of Group Captains.
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Old 17th May 2021, 14:15
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Excellent! More Group Captains per station, that's what we need...

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Old 17th May 2021, 14:50
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Hard to say what is more irritating; doubling the number of Group Captains or the use of “standing up” .
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Old 17th May 2021, 15:00
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"Commander air wing".......Hmmmm now... wasn't there a similar sounding rank specifically designed for that role...
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Old 17th May 2021, 15:39
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This was mooted about 3 years ago at Waddo. I remember it being stressed, countless times, that this wasnít a drive to have more Gp Captains. I call bullshit.
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Old 17th May 2021, 18:43
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This is so that non-Aircrew (are we allowed to say blunties these days?) can be Station Commanders at flying stations. So, as they canít be in charge of flying and be its Duty Holder (DH), then you have to generate a further Gp Capt as the DDH. An Aircrew Stn Cdr can be CO and DDH, but a non-Aircrew officer can only be CO and so you have to have another Gp Capt, that is Aircrew, to be held responsible for the flying.

The replacement of the Stn Cdr by a non-Aircrew officer has already been announced: https://www.raf.mod.uk/our-organisat...-appointments/

Group Captain M D Lorriman-Hughes OBE to be Officer Commanding Royal Air Force Waddington in January 2022 in succession to Group Captain S P Kilvington
Simple explanation, but by crikey have we made things difficult for ourselves...

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Old 17th May 2021, 18:50
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Why does he need to be a flier to run a station, British Rail does not require theirs to drive the trains and BTW the two photographed have a wing each, he does after all have an o/c Ops and o/c Eng under him, surely the ability to delegate hasn’t been lost in the RAF that much. The previous head of the CAA managed without any flying experience.
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Old 17th May 2021, 19:00
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Why does he need to be a flier to run a station, British Rail does not require theirs to drive the trains and BTW the two photographed have a wing each, he does after all have an o/c Ops and o/c Eng under him, surely the ability to delegate hasnít been lost in the RAF that much. The head of the CAA manages without any flying experience.
Nothing new. An Air Trafficker was Stn Cdr at Shawbury a few years back. And Iím sure other examples exist.

The B Word summed it up neatly. And itís also work-load sharing, especially now XW has such a complex organisation.
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Old 17th May 2021, 19:13
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From RAF News, "The ISTAR Air Wing will comprise the flying Squadrons, Air Support Wing, Air Engineering Wing, Number 1 ISTAR Wing and the ISTAR Operational Conversion Unit."

Surely, 2 or more flights make
squadron, 2 or more squadrons make a wing, and 2 or more wings make a group.

Batco

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Old 17th May 2021, 19:15
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Odiham, three helicopter squadrons plus an OCU and permanent detachments in NI and Belize in the 70’s

Brize , VC10 Sqn, Belfast Sqn, a pair of Britannia Sqns , plus Para Training, RAF Regiment Sqn, Base Hangar, Bomb storage, U.K.mams, hotel in the 80’s

all with one Staish. And I’d hate to think of some stations during the war, have you ever seen how big Brize was?
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Old 17th May 2021, 19:24
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Why does he need to be a flier to run a station, British Rail does not require theirs to drive the trains and BTW the two photographed have a wing each, he does after all have an o/c Ops and o/c Eng under him, surely the ability to delegate hasnít been lost in the RAF that much. The previous head of the CAA managed without any flying experience.
He doesnít - isnít Brize now run by an Engineer? Didnít the previous CAS also pointedly ask which other organisations chose their CEO on the basis of their hand-eye coordination when they were 18? Times are a changing. Some things for the better, others not necessarily so - have you seen how the Admin Branch has basically been turned into a bunch of call centre operators?!
But if we are now shifting towards genuinely putting the right people in to senior jobs for the right reasons other than a safe pair of hands, surely thatís a good thing?
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Old 17th May 2021, 19:28
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That’s almost double the current station size.Brize during the war, those are hangars top right and that’s aircraft parking all the way down to the bottom.





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Old 17th May 2021, 19:44
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How does a Wing include other Wings? Presumably someone decided we've got enough Groups already and fudged it?
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Old 17th May 2021, 20:30
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Wasn't there a period at the now defunct RAF Lyneham when the Harry was an Air Cdre (Lamb?). That didn't last long.
mcdhu
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Old 17th May 2021, 21:29
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Originally Posted by Melchett01 View Post
He doesn’t - isn’t Brize now run by an Engineer? Didn’t the previous CAS also pointedly ask which other organisations chose their CEO on the basis of their hand-eye coordination when they were 18? Times are a changing. Some things for the better, others not necessarily so - have you seen how the Admin Branch has basically been turned into a bunch of call centre operators?!
But if we are now shifting towards genuinely putting the right people in to senior jobs for the right reasons other than a safe pair of hands, surely that’s a good thing?
Is it a good thing? Why does it need a second Group Captain the run the flying side, surely a Wing Commander as in o/c ops can and has held that position in the past for decades, a Station Commander should be promoted on merit to post regardless of his trade, to put a Group Captain under him to run ops smacks of overmanning in that rank and surely can cause problems within a stations structure if you have two that do not get on. It seems an expensive alternative at a time of shrinking budgets to satisfy jobs for the boys, it also must reduce the chances for Wing Commanders to prove themselves in post and further their careers.
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Old 17th May 2021, 23:40
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Odiham, three helicopter squadrons plus an OCU and permanent detachments in NI and Belize in the 70’s

Brize , VC10 Sqn, Belfast Sqn, a pair of Britannia Sqns , plus Para Training, RAF Regiment Sqn, Base Hangar, Bomb storage, U.K.mams, hotel in the 80’s

all with one Staish. And I’d hate to think of some stations during the war, have you ever seen how big Brize was?
But When Brize Norton had those units the Station Commander was an Air Commodore.

And during WW2, Bomber Command stations were clumped into Bases, commanded by an Air Commodore.
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Old 18th May 2021, 04:44
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Two words...

Haddon Cave.

To all those that ask why we need two Gp Capts it is a result of the fallout from the Haddon Cave report.

Someone has to be accountable nowadays and the structure they fit into is the Duty Holder (DH) construct. The Senior DH is CAS. The Operational DH is the relevant AOC. The Delivery DH is a Gp Capt and is usually the Stn Cdr.

In simple terms when risks are identified someone has to be the grown up who is responsible for holding that risk and would be the person in court at any subsequent inquest. They need to prove they have taken all meaningful steps to minimise risks. If the Stn Cdr doesnít have the authority or budget to minimise a risk it gets pushed up the chain. Tornado Collision Avoidance System is a good example of when an identified risk gets elevated due to budgetary restraints.

So, when a Stn Cdr has a requirement to be responsible for the risks associated with operating an aircraft it just isnít possible (argue all you like but Iíll never agree with you) for a non aircrew person to assume that role.

Take Coningsby as an example. Would you really expect an Admin Branch Gp Capt to be the person responsible for the safe delivery of Typhoon Operations? When a new risk is identified would that individual have the knowledge and authority to decide how best to manage that risk and ultimately sit in a court of law to defend themselves?

The Admin Branch Gp Capt is absolutely capable of running a station but I will never believe that they could be a suitable DDH. Hence the two Gp Capts when required.

I realise itís not a system that existed in the RAF of yesteryear so some people will struggle with accepting it. However, I happen to think that the Air Safety world and the DH construct (despite the initial resistance of everybody!) is a vast improvement on what came before.

BV
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Old 18th May 2021, 06:13
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The deployable ISTAR forces at Waddington used to be No 34 Expeditionary Wing. A quick re-name and a job for another Group Captain.....
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