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-   -   BBC Series - Fighter Pilots (https://www.pprune.org/military-aviation/557419-bbc-series-fighter-pilots.html)

si. 1st Mar 2015 20:35

BBC Series - Fighter Pilots
I've spent the last few evenings watching the above series on YouTube, and throughly enjoyed doing so. I recognised Martin Withers as a QFI, and kept my eye open for Courtney, believing he'd be at Linton & Valley around that time. I flew with a former Linton instructor, whilst he commanded No 11 AEF after retiring from regular service, but didn't see him.

My question is, did anyone from this forum appear in the series?

chinook240 1st Mar 2015 21:33

BBC Series - Fighter Pilots
If you watch the parade ground scene at OCTU, you can see me sweeping the square. My cse were the support Sqn for the graduation, however, I believe the grad ball scenes used in the documentary were of our grad.

betty swallox 2nd Mar 2015 05:09

I think you'll find.... The series was called "Fighter Pilot". Not "s".

Made me join the RAF!!

TynLlan 2nd Mar 2015 09:13

Chinook240 correct
I also appeared in the same scenes. The BBC camera crews were on a work to rule so did not film parade preparation or the Graduation Dinner that was Blue Sqn instead of Red that was being filmed the rest of the time. I also followed the course through Valley

Skeleton 2nd Mar 2015 11:57

Knew JM when he was on Buccs at Lossie, :) Good guy who would not suffer fools but earned respect because of the way he went about dealing with them.

Still a pilot who threw his maps on the floor but i guess that kept me in a living picking them up :) One particularly nasty individual (a rarity thankfully) did walk to his Jaguar with just that, the scraps of his maps off the floor, having berated me for not having the OS map he required immediately to hand, moral do not leave your maps lying about. Formation leader knew and approved - Happy days :)

Courtney Mil 2nd Mar 2015 12:19

Si, I'd left Linton before they filmed this. Actually rather glad the film crews weren't around in my time there. I'd have had to spend too much time combing hair, keeping large watch in plain view and wearing aviator shades. Id rather look good than be good!

sycamore 2nd Mar 2015 14:13

C-M...you might want to rephrase your last sentence...or maybe not....

Lima Juliet 2nd Mar 2015 14:18

This series almost made me not apply to join - thought the odds were too long! Still, when I did go through the Officers' & Aircrew Selection Centre at RAF Biggin Hill successfully, I did attribute this series to my success in part - forewarned is forearmed!

Watched it again last night. The only difference I could see was the long hair and flares plus the Candidates' Club had a Star Wars gane machine in it!


si. 2nd Mar 2015 19:24

I don't think too much had changed when I went through OASC, there was still a tatty space invaders machine for 'entertainment'. :rolleyes:

TV documentaries rarely reflect to full story, but this was very good viewing.

thing 2nd Mar 2015 21:01

The guy who taught me to fly was an instructor from around that time. Watching the series I see where his sympathetic manner and gentle training technique come from...:)

Martin the Martian 3rd Mar 2015 11:09

Watched the first episode of this last night. Would be interesting to know how different the OASC course is now. Do they still call it OASC?

Fox3WheresMyBanana 3rd Mar 2015 13:57

Another old pilot and myself were on a VR(T) Cadet Force Officer course a few years ago, and part of a morning was at the testing centre. The physical and mental testing are similar, except that the machines are computerised (our generation's electro-mechanical machines were in a mini museum section! (which cued a joke from a PE teacher on how we should have been also).
We did a few of the tests. The two pilots passed (still got it!) and everyone else failed - including the PE teacher (dismally). We just smiled; he didn't. ;)

The leadership exercises looked similar, except they are clearly a lot safer - physical strength and agility are less helpful now.

rolling20 3rd Mar 2015 14:59

It was first shown as I was digesting the bumpf I had received on the UAS in the post. When I applied to join some weeks later, I knew what to expect and wasn't disappointed! I have it on DVD and can watch it through from start to finish if the mood takes me.
It is a pity they didn't do a follow up on the main characters some years later. I understand one of the guys was planning a book on the series, 'to put the record straight'. It has been mentioned on here before.

Fox3WheresMyBanana 3rd Mar 2015 17:09

There is a paper presented in 1999 by the Brits to the Yanks on the evolution of RAF pilot aptitude testing here:

It's only 6 pages,and describes the underlying philosophies as well as the changes.

Looks like we're the same generation rolling20. I did my Cadetship selection in May 1981 and likewise found the series extremely useful. I later flew with one of the main characters who had re-roled as a nav.

rolling20 4th Mar 2015 08:13

You would be correct there Fox. Gave an 18 year old a fascinating insight into service life. Happy times when I look back :)

stationcalling 20th Oct 2015 22:36

Well, I've been watching all these posts about "Fighter Pilot" for some time now and unfortunately, I might give away my Pprune name by clarifying a few issues.
I was very much involved with the series at Linton, my old Sqn Cdr from Canberra days was the RAF liaison officer who accompanied the BBC team throughout. This led to some early stacks for me and numerous visits to local hostelries!
One of my students, who was filmed, was not destined for fast jets and we both realised this at an early stage in his training. He did however become an experienced Hercules Captain.
CFS, in their infinite wisdom, apparently used some of my airborne comments, (taken out of context I might add) to show how "not" to train students.
The producer, Colin Strong, wanted to "feel" the pressure the students were under, so it was decided to give him 14 hours dual training, (the amount all students would get to first solo).
Unfortunately, unlike the RAF students who had a PPL or had completed 30 hours previous flying experience, Colin's only flying experience was as a passenger in a B-747!
He went solo on a Jet Provost on Exercise 14 at Elvington. I was that QFI!

JointShiteFighter 20th Oct 2015 22:56

Originally Posted by Courtney
I'd have had to spend too much time combing hair, keeping large watch in plain view and wearing aviator shades. Id rather look good than be good!

Isn't that what you all do anyway when you aren't flying? :cool:

Courtney Mil 20th Oct 2015 23:13

The resurrection of this thread brings an answer to something I've been wondering about for a while. "Where's Fox3 been?" Now I see he's been banned. Seems a bit odd; not the sort of guy to do anything inflammatory. Anyone know what happened. Or aren't we allowed to talk about it?

overstress 21st Oct 2015 00:59

Isn't that what you all do anyway when you aren't flying?
Some in my current job manage it while flying...

Courtney, I was wondering about Fox3 myself... :sad:

Wander00 21st Oct 2015 09:04

Fox 3 - not the sort of guy to frighten the horses - what can he have done? Hope he is not unwell, but "banned"

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