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-   -   Can you help me? RAF 1960s. (https://www.pprune.org/military-aviation/616339-can-you-help-me-raf-1960s.html)

BEagle 8th Jan 2019 21:57

Old Bricks , I see that Armpit House is yet another very nice piece of defence real estate which will be flogged off by 2020. I wonder whether they'll find another East European crook to buy it?

I guess the future defence god botherers will probably have to do their training in some wretched portakabin city outpost of empire miles from civilisation...

Old Bricks 9th Jan 2019 12:10

The only other bit of religion that springs to mind from that same period was when the Towers had an official visit from the RC Bishop to the Forces. All RC-registered flight cadets were rounded up to meet the Bish, but, since it was after the university layabouts (like Beags) had left, and we were down to only one annual entry before the GE entries started, it was rapidly apparent that there was a world shortage of RC cadets. "Find more!" came the order from on high, and the plot was cast. The bish would be taken down to the flightline crewrooms to meet RC cadets in flying clothing for coffee, then the bish would be taken up to College Hall to meet more cadets, but taken via HQ to meet the Commandant, allowing enough time for cadets to change into uniform and get back to College Hall before him, where additional non-RC cadets had been rounded up to swell the numbers. Every non-RC was paired with an RC who had to brief him on the name and location of an appropriate RC school that he ought to have attended etc. I don't think the bish was fooled for a minute, but it was a good example of the daft things that we had to put up with in the 60s.

Pontius Navigator 9th Jan 2019 13:52

OldBricks, not just the gleaming towers. We went mad with black and white paint for an inspection. We ran out of black. As we used it up we added more and more thinners. Eventually we just had black thinners. It dried as quick as it evaporated.

Nil desperandum; as the inspecting officer approached a corner all the manholes around the corner got a quick coat of thinners. Black footprints followed the AOC elsewhere.The

James, any story will be incomplete without such futile irrelevances. It was also a time of discontent in the Services with cancellation of projects such as Skybolt and TSR2 and the bulk of the aircrew on shorter service commissions up to the age of 38.

Yellow Sun 9th Jan 2019 14:13


Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator (Post 10356067)
James, any story will be incomplete without such futile irrelevances. It was also a time of discontent in the Services with cancellation of projects such as Skybolt and TSR2 and the bulk of the aircrew on shorter service commissions up to the age of 38.

Who recalls the Direct Entry tie? A gold ladder on blue background with only the first 3 rungs intact.

YS:)

Fareastdriver 9th Jan 2019 14:56

I was Direst Entry and had a great time! Eighteen years of legalised hooliganism.

MPN11 9th Jan 2019 16:51

Yellow Sun ... oh that tie is a memory!! Never had one, despite being DEC, and mercifully got a PC so never needed it!! :)

Pontius Navigator 10th Jan 2019 12:47


Originally Posted by Yellow Sun (Post 10356087)


Who recalls the Direct Entry tie? A gold ladder on blue background with only the first 3 rungs intact.

YS:)

And for some, only two rungs required.

For James, this was a time where you needed to pass 4 or 5 'B' exams before promotion to flt lt. Enter the world of the partial pass. Having taken 5 exams an officer may fail two but have a sufficiently high average that he was awarded a partial pass. The following year he would take the previously failed papers. If his average mark for all 5 fell below the target he would lose his previous partial and need a resit. This gave rise to the professional fg off. All the fun and no responsibility. A 12 year or full career fg off was not unheard of. This happy state ended around early 1970s IIRC when the B was abolished and you merely needed a rec by your CO.

Dougie M 10th Jan 2019 13:13

When I joined in the early 60's there was a "professional Fg Off" Bond who stated that during his B exams there was an air raid and he had to abandon the classroom to seek shelter. He applied for an honorary pass which was refused so he didn't go for a resit. He was quite happy with his lot as a mid thirties junior officer.

MPN11 10th Jan 2019 17:11

Gosh! Never knew that! I just took the ‘B’ and became a temporary flt lt before passing the ‘C’. :)

1066 10th Jan 2019 18:31

Dougie,
As you know by the 80's rank inflation, university entrants, and Spec Aircrew meant everyone was a Flt Lt and Fg Off aircrew became the rare breed.
Pontius,
I started the B as a 5 paper exam and got a partial. By the time I passed the failed papers, some of the papers I passed first time had been scrubbed so I can claim to have passed the 5 paper B. Later I think the B was scrubbed completely.
Then when I started the C it was a 3 paper exam. Another partial and before I could take the one paper I'd failed, the two that I'd passed were scrubbed. I passed the one remaining paper and refused to even start ISS, expecting that if I waited long enough that too would follow and be reduced or scrubbed. No such luck!
1066

MPN11 10th Jan 2019 18:48

I claim 1st time passes on B, C, ISS and ASC ... so there!

not sure what difference it really made ... getting a PC was the only thing that really mattered.

Pontius Navigator 10th Jan 2019 19:16


Originally Posted by MPN11 (Post 10357267)
I claim 1st time passes on B, C, ISS and ASC ... so there!

not sure what difference it really made ... getting a PC was the only thing that really mattered.

Like a 1st at Cambridge 😁

Tankertrashnav 11th Jan 2019 00:08

I took the B in Singapore and there was a bit of a scandal because, as the story went, somebody had phoned a mate who was taking the exam in the UK seven and a half hours later and had read him the question paper (pricey and difficult to organise in 1967, but not impossible). Never did find out if it was true.

Later on in my career about half a dozen of us on the squadron were told to report to the CO's office one day . Once in we were told that he had discovered that none of us had applied to sit the C exam, and that we were to go and get our applications in straight away, no excuses. Well I passed, not that it did me any good as I never advanced any further than flight lieutenant.

MPN11 11th Jan 2019 08:49

TTN, I have a vague recollection of that time-zone story. I did my B in Singapore in 68, IIRC.

Pontius Navigator 11th Jan 2019 12:56

TTN, around that time I realised that papers were recycled. Some questions every 2, 3 or 4 years. Flt Safety questions, my weak link, only one or other paper. Year I passed mine we had an FS question in part 1. The following day there was another; it was from their same chapter in the AP. One lucky chap had looked up the Part 1 question that night, read to the end of the chapter and breezed Part 2. The following year I told the candidates the probable questions and ones that would not occur. I was spot on.

Shackman 11th Jan 2019 14:02

TTN, likewise on a four-engined fighter squadron somewhere in Scotland - although our CO had already entered us all on the next B exam, in one months time! Much midnight oil was burned. The day before the exam a Mickey Finn/taceval was called, and after twelve hours over the North Atlantic we were diverted to Machrihanish so I missed the exam. I think it was two weeks later the B exam was abolished and I became an instant Flt Lt, so the Boss immediately enrolled us all for the next C exams.

James Blatch 1st Apr 2019 14:10


Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator (Post 10356067)
OldBricks, not just the gleaming towers. We went mad with black and white paint for an inspection. We ran out of black. As we used it up we added more and more thinners. Eventually we just had black thinners. It dried as quick as it evaporated.

Nil desperandum; as the inspecting officer approached a corner all the manholes around the corner got a quick coat of thinners. Black footprints followed the AOC elsewhere.The

James, any story will be incomplete without such futile irrelevances. It was also a time of discontent in the Services with cancellation of projects such as Skybolt and TSR2 and the bulk of the aircrew on shorter service commissions up to the age of 38.

Love this. Cancellation of TSR2 very much in the story - along with rear crew discord at lack of ejection options in V-Bombers.

Mogwi 4th Apr 2019 13:53

Took my C exam at RAF Bishops Court in norn iron in the early 70's. Flew down from Aldergrove in the mighty Wessex and reported to the examining officer who insisted I remove the 9mm Browning (loaded) from my waist band holster. He was rather startled when I then removed my flak-jacket to reveal my personal Colt .38 auto (loaded) in a concealed shoulder holster.

The memory of the look on his face still makes me chuckle.

Swing the lamp!

Mog

Top West 50 4th Apr 2019 20:44

Passed the B then it was abandoned. Same with the C. Finished the 2 year ISS which was then reduced to 18 months. But my luck changed when I completedt the 6 month ASC which had just been crammed into 10 months.

langleybaston 4th Apr 2019 20:56

re. Church, not Church Parade:

at JHQ Rheindahlen where I totalled 9 years in several postings, there were three churches for the various persuasions. There were no parades as such, but Battle of Britain and Remembrance Day were very well attended by all ranks, and in uniform. "Ordinary" Sundays were also well attended and some wore uniform. Because it was a multi-service and multi-national "station"/ "garrison", a wide variety of uniforms could be seen.
Major occasions were followed by a family curry lunch in the Mess.
[And wives wore hats, which I loved!]


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