Best thing about being slammed up in boarding school was CCF RAF activities:Our own T38 Grasshopper
- Didn't come out too often, unsurprisingly. Chipmunk AEFs at Hamble
- The smell : Metal, oil and ....err...puke.Alouette and Wessex rides
- From the cricket green during 'CCF day'. The Commando kids were beside themselves with jealousy at that point ('Yeah, go paddle your canoes why don't you, us 'Space Cadets' are going up in this sucker!' etc )VC10 rides out of Brize
- Endless touch and go's and, as it was configured with only a few seats, a gang of Cadets rolling up and down the cabin on take-off and landing was standard ops. I distinctly remember standing
in the cockpit doorway for the crosswind landings and gaining a real sense of yaw corrections on approach ! Cadet Camp at RAF Wyton
- Drill practice with a real Flight Sergeant who was apoplectic at the standard of our capabilities
I think he said something about ballet dancers. 'Helping' change the undercarriage on Canberras and having the run of the airfield from Friday 4pm onwards when the RAF closed!Gliding Course at Kenley
: Just the best thing, Sedburghs and Mk3s of course. A two week course , went solo in 4 days , thought that was clever .....and had to hang around for the remaining 10 days to 'help out'. Fool. We helped dig around the buried Spitfires in between duties of holding glider wing tips and making tea.
Great fun , but I wonder if just a fraction of these things are possible or even allowed these days??
I haven't even mentioned the liberal use of Thunderflash grenade things on night exercises (ever seen how high a steel helmet goes when places over one of those !?), the 13 yr olds with access to an armory and rifle range and blasting at radio controlled aircraft with shotguns! (With prior arrangement and suitably Swastika'd models, of course.) I seem to remember we also had a Bren Gun... surely it wasn't live? I think the Bren Group just ran around on exercises and parade days looking meaningful, hope so anyway!
This wasn't that
long ago, just saying.