Recently Central & East Yorkshire Wing invested in some new drumming equipment with the intention to loan them out to Squadrons for a 6 month period to help develop an interest in music.
Led by Sergeant ATC Adam Waudby; the Wing Bandmaster; several cadets have been taught how to use these drums and in the short time we have had them the results are impressive to say the least!
The intention is to practice to a point where shortly before they go on to another Squadron, the drummers will perform for the Squadron Civilian Committee with a view to fundraising to purchase our own "Corps of Drums" This would represent an investment of around £2500 for 4 snare drums, a base drum and the associated accoutrements and could only be supported if their is a genuine interest to develop this important aspect of Air Cadet training. The ultimate ambition would be to have our formal parades lead by the Corps of Drums, something which will add interest for the general public and another boon for the unit at public events.
Music is one of the 13 core activities of the Air Training Corps and attainment badges can be earned from Blue for a Grade 3 in Music all the way up to Gold for representing the Corps at a national level, for which our most recent representative was ex-Cadet Warrant Officer Chloe Springall who is now an adult Civilian Instructor in Manchester. There is also a BTEC in Music provided; for free; by the Cadets Vocational Qualifications Organisation (CVQO). Additionally there are regular camps arranged for Music which lead to public performances at major events.
4 cadets from 739 Squadron attended 9 AEF recently to go flying in the Grob Tutor at RAF Linton-On-Ouse.
All but one had never flown before. Cdt Sgt Emily Orviss was experiencing her 8th flight and was looking forward to more aerobatics but unfortunately the weather was not with us on the day due to low cloud so they all had a nice jolly out over the city of York instead.
Cdt Sgt Emily Orviss
First time flyers were:
Cdt Jared Elwick
Cdt Guy Taylor
Cdt Emily Young
The three cadets were all a little bit nervous prior to going in the air but all came back down to earth with big smiles on their faces. Cdt Young said "It was amazing" so I asked her "Have you got the bug then?" Looking a bit confused I expanded saying the flying bug with the response being "Definitely". Cdt's Elwick and Taylor were of a similar opinion and despite the rain starting to come down around lunchtime all had successful sorties.
The Grob Tutor is owned by Babcock and primarily used for training in the University Air Squadrons and Elementary Flying Training for new pilots in the Royal Air Force; with them being used for Air Experience Flights; mainly on weekends; for cadets from both the Air Training Corps and Combined Cadet Force (Royal Air Force) which are collectively known as the Royal Air Force Air Cadets. The Tutor has been in service with the RAF since 1999 and is due to be replaced in the next few years as part of the Strategic Defence & Security Review of 2015.
Flt Lt Steven Lewis RAFVRT
739 Scarborough Squadron
On Friday 5th February 2016 the Air Training Corps turned 75 years old!
When the government took direct control of the Air Defence Cadet Corps under a Royal Warrant in 1941, renaming the organisation the Air Training Corps; 739 Scarborough High School Squadron was also founded on the same date - along with another Squadron in the town - 313.
Squadron Photograph of 739 (Scarborough High School) Squadron in 1942
Today 739 Squadron is an open Squadron - anyone in the town can now join.
As luck would have it the 75th anniversary actually fell on our own parade evening this year so we decided to do something special to mark the occasion.
Several local dignitaries were invited along with all previous Commanding Officers to come along and have an insight into the activities we provide.
Our hard copy archives and the retired Squadron Banner.
Cadets preparing for the evening.
Cadets ready for the history video.
Guests watching the AED demonstration.
Guests watching the AED demonstration.
Our recruitment banners. Left is the Squadrons own design, centre is the old ATC one and right is the new staff recruitment banner only collected this week from Wing HQ.
Invited guests and some of the cadets.
From Left to Right:
Flt Lt Steven Lewis; OC Sqn, Flt Lt Sue Balmford; Wing CPA & Previous OC Sqn, Mr Robert Goodwill MP for Scarborough & Whitby; Squadron President, Cllr John Ritchie; Deputy Mayor for the Borough of Scarborough, Mrs Marilyn Ritchie; Deputy Mayoress, Wg Cdr Stephen Wiggins; OC Central & East Yorkshire Wing ATC
The invited guests and all the cadets and staff were shown a video which marked the culmination of a project over the last 12 months to fully archive digitally our historical records; most of which are now available to be viewed by all on our website www.scarboroughaircadets.org.uk.
We have invested in new equipment heavily over the last 6 years, so we just had to show it all off! The guests were shown a demonstration of our emergency Life Skills equipment; some of which was funded with support from the Mayoress's fund last year which represents an investment of over £2,000.
They were shown a simple radio exercise involving a game of minesweeper; using new radios which cost over £1500.
Our new state of the art flight simulator; which cost £2500 and was majority funded by RAFA Scarborough Branch was up and running and the guests spent a lot of time talking to the cadets about it and viewing their flying skills - several members of the RAFA were present and it was pleasing to see them experience the joy that they have brought the Squadron by its very generous donation. Future plans include purchasing a full frame including seat for us to build a fuselage around it.
Our latest investment of nearly £1500 was on a Mobile Team Activity Team building set from MTa Learning. MTa is used by the Royal Air Force and experienced by cadets attending the Regional Activity Centres of the Air Cadet Organisation and MTa Learning have been extremely supportive in helping provide this equipment at a generous discount and ongoing support in its use - we highly recommend them to all Squadrons!
Naturally we also provided refreshments for our guests and hardworking cadets and this was generously funded by the Civilian Committee with them also preparing it for the evening.
The Officer Commanding had been informed on Monday 1st February that after nomination and a selection interview with Officer Commanding Central & East Yorkshire Wing; Wg Cdr Stephen Wiggins; that Officer Commanding RAF Fylingdales; Wg Cdr Dave Keighley had selected Cdt Sgt Alice Nisbet to be his Station Commander's Cadet for 2016. Naturally we decided to announce this on the evening - but it was extremely hard to keep it a secret during the week. Alice had no idea she had been selected and was under the impression it had been one of the other two candidates - but we were under no such illusions. Flt Lt Steven Lewis said:
"Alice represents everything that is good about the Air Cadets; she has been on this Squadron only two and a half years and in that time has grown into a well rounded, mature young lady who always leads by example and is definitely one to follow. She is keen, committed and has gone from being a rather timid young girl into a confident, outgoing and organised young woman.
When I was asked who I wished to nominate I did not even have to think - it had to be Alice as the Air Training Corps has had such a dramatic and positive impact on her and we are so proud of her and her achievements. Her parents already knew; and I am sure they are even more proud of her themselves. I have also nominated Alice for a Commandant Air Cadets Certificate of Good Service as she is thoroughly deserving of the accolade."
Alice will go on to support Wg Cdr Keighley for the rest of the year and with whom we have developed a very good working relationship through his and his staff's support for the Air Cadets locally. She will escort him at formal public events that he is invited too; and other on base events as well.
Flt Lt Steven Lewis & Cdt Sgt Alice Nisbet; SCC RAF Fylingdales 2016
Two cadets also celebrated their own birthdays on this day - Cdt's David Billngham and Emily Orviss - so naturally we helped them celebrate as well!
Cdt Emily Orviss cuts the cake.
Overall this was a successful evening and we hope our guests went away with an insight into "what we do" which is:
To promote and encourage amongst young people a practical interest in aviation and the Royal Air Force.
To provide training useful in services & civilian life.
To foster the spirit of adventure & to develop the qualities of leadership & good citizenship.
During conversations the invited guests commented extremely positively on what we do, and on our history - which we honoured on this day; the 5th February 2016. Several other events during the course of the year are planned; including an open reunion event for all former cadets and staff during the summer, which is likely to include activities and a hog roast.
Flt Lt Steven Lewis "I was a cadet during the 1990's. It had a major impact on my outlook in life and the experiences it provided me - the pinnacles being flying solo in a Vigilant glider and achieving Cadet Warrant Officer.
I am a very proud OC of the Squadron; that I am able to provide this generations youngsters with the opportunities they deserve; and that we are helping mould outstanding young men and women; like Sgt Alice Nisbet, Cadet Warrant Officer Roxanne Mennell; who will be joining the staff later in the year, ex Cdt FS Dominic MacAleese who joined the Royal Air Force as an Officer last year and ex CWO Carl Griffiths who is currently training in the Royal Air Force to become a policeman; to name just a few of our success stories of recent years. They truly make our volunteering worthwhile.
My only hope is that in the future; that as they grow older; they will also reflect back on their time as an Air Cadet with the same positive feelings I had and perhaps choose to return to us in the future and help mould the next generation. Because as the Squadron motto says 'Together we Achieve'."
Flt Lt Steven Lewis RAFVRT
739 Scarborough Squadron
The Central & East Yorkshire Wing Air Training Corps represented the Region at the National Air Cadet Music Competition – coming second nationally by just one point!
The band was formed by cadets from across Yorkshire representing 10 squadrons and was a mixture of instruments. For many of the cadets it was their first foray into cadet music and certainly competitions – so to do so well was a testament to both their team working skills and musical ability.
They performed a rendition of Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” and Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer” to the assembled crowds and VIPs including Air Vice Marshal Baz North, Air Member for Personnel, Air Commodore Dawn McCafferty, Commandant Air Cadets and Group Captain Carol Vorderman, Honorary Ambassador to the Air Cadet Organisation. The crowd clearly enjoyed the performance with VIPs and crowd singing along and many a smile visible.
Wing Bandmaster, Sergeant (ATC) Adam Waudby said “To come together like that as a team and perform to that high level is a great indication of the level of skill and effort put in by our cadets, I am very proud of them. I can’t wait to see what they can achieve next year – so far 2016 looks very promising for them.”
One of the newer cadets in the group was Cadet Tabby Rennard of 110 (City of York) Squadron, she commented that it was a great opportunity and that she felt she had really learnt loads. Her personal highlight was meeting Carol Vorderman and getting a selfie with her after the performance.
A video of the Ensemble performance can be viewed here.
Interested in joining the Air Cadets as a member of staff or cadet? You can find out more and get in touch with your local Air Cadet unit at www.raf.mod.uk/aircadets
The final ensemble included two cadets from 739 Sqn - CWO Chloe Springall and Cdt Sgt Rory Hobkinson. Both played a pivotal role in organising managing the Wing and Regional competition entries as well as the musical arrangements with a lot of help from the Wing Bandmaster - thanks Adam!
On a bright weekend in early October 739 Scarborough and 740 Whitby Squadrons attended a joint activity weekend at the North Region Activity Centre located at RAF Linton-on-Ouse near York.
Consisting of 18 cadets (9 from each squadron) and 5 staff they undertook a variety of fun but educational activities whilst there.
On the first evening they used the RAF stations gymnasium facilities and played some netball (even the boys!)
During Saturday they each had the opportunity to take a flight in the RAF's elementary trainer, the Grob Tutor T1 based at 9 Air Experience Flight. The weather was perfect - clear, crisp and dry with excellent visibility and many of the younger cadets experienced their first flight in a light aircraft, whilst one of the older ones had racked up over 15 flights! Some cadets were nervous about it, but the smiles on their faces afterwards spoke volumes about how enjoyable this activity truly is.
Whilst waiting for their flights they had the opportunity to fly a Tucano T1 - the RAF's fast jet trainer. Albeit this was in computer form on the activity centres state of the art flight simulator. Taking off from BAe Brough, they had to climb and turn towards the Humber Bridge, fly underneath it, then gain height turn and return to Brough to land.
In the late afternoon they enjoyed some team building activities using a Mobile Team Activity Insights kit which promotes both leadership, teamwork and initiative skills some of the key training the Air Training corps aims to provide.
In the evening it was off to York to enjoy some social time with some games of ten pin bowling where the competition was fierce - particularly among the staff.
On Sunday we departed the station for a visit to the Yorkshire Air Museum where the cadets followed the various trails and quizzes in order to learn more about the historical nature of RAF Elvington, the Victor and the Nimrod that are based there.
All in all it was a very successful weekend was had by all and the cadets enjoyed some wonderful experiences and hopefully also made some new friends from each squadron.
Flt Lt Steven Lewis
739 Scarborough Squadron