Our mission is to promote and encourage a practical interest in aviation among young people. We achieve this through four key activities.
During our regular Squadron parade nights, the cadets have the opportunity to learn about aviation related subjects. Our structured syllabus of training links to an online examination system, where they can test themselves, and earn recognition for their knowledge and skills.
Cadets start as First Class cadets, having completed their recruit and basic training. To become a Leading Cadet, they must pass exams in Basic Navigation using a map and compass, Airmanship, and Principles of Flight. For higher classifications – Senior, and Master Air Cadet – cadets choose optional subjects from a range of choices and specialise in different areas of skill. Ultimately, they can complete a teaching course, and become Instructor Cadets responsible for teaching others in their unit.
Aviation Visits and Experiences
A wide range of opportunities and visits are available to cadets. From day visits to local aviation sites – Biggin Hill, Rizon Jet executive aviation at Biggin Hill Airport, Gatwick Airport among recent trips, to spending time with the Royal Air Force at stations including Benson and Odiham.
The best opportunity can sometimes be the chance to spend a week with the Royal Air Force on an Summer Annual Camp. Living, working along side regular personnel, and getting up close with the aircraft and people of the RAF is an amazing experience, and often the highlight of a cadets’ time with the Squadron. In recent years, the Squadron has been to RAF Waddington, RAF Shawbury, RAF Wyton, and has been allocated RAF Marham for 2014.
BTEC in Aviation Studies
Completing the Master Air Cadet classification is a superb achievement – made better by the recognition through the Cadet Vocational Qualifications Organisation (CVQO) of a BTEC in Aviation Studies, worth 2 GCSEs at grade A*-C. This is one of many ways in which the experiences of a cadet is recognised by colleges, organisations and employers beyond their time with us.
BTEC in Uniformed Public Services
Once cadets reach the age of 16, CVQO allows them to take up a free optional BTEC in Uniformed Public Services. This programme combines the achievements of the cadet, with additional workbook questions, to earn another qualification equivalent to 4 GCSEs at A*-C. We have an outstanding record of success in this area, delivering over twenty BTEC awards since it was first introduced to the Air Training Corps.