Pocklington School

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CCF RAF cadets collect blue wings at RAF Topcilffe

CCF RAF cadets collect blue wings at RAF Topcilffe
pilot and student sat in glider on runway at RAF Topcliffe

Eight Pocklington School Combined Cadet Force (CCF) RAF cadets have completed their Blue Wings Aviation Training Package after a fantastic flying day at RAF Topcliffe during the recent Exeat weekend. 

For the group of cadets, which included UK and international boarders and day pupils, it was probably one of the best flying days for a long time, according to Patrick Dare, OC RAF Section at Pocklington School.  As well as completing the ground school elements of the course, the cadets logged three flights each in the Viking T Mk 1 gliders, making the most of the weather and flying up until sunset. It was a particularly poignant experience for Patrick Dare too, as the day was the 21st anniversary of his commission as an RAF volunteer officer. Following the visit, the Squadron Leader at RAF Topcliffe commented on how impressed his volunteer gliding school instructors had been with the cadets, both with their enthusiasm and how quickly they picked up the training given. 

Patrick commented: “The cadets were fantastic. They listened carefully during the briefings and even though it was a chilly day, were keen to be out on the flight line, getting involved with all stages of the launches including connecting the cables, bringing the gliders back in, securing the wing tips and getting ready for relaunch.” 

This success comes at the end of a busy very term for the RAF Section at Pocklington School, after 23 new recruits were welcomed to the section at the start of term. As well as flying training, the cadets have spent time gaining synthetic training on the flight simulators at RAF Topcliffe and joined boarders on their trips to the Yorkshire Air Museum and former RAF Elvington base, as part of the boarders’ Saturday enrichment activity. 

The Pocklington School RAF Section is keen to develop the skills of the cadets and encourage them to take on leadership roles as their experience grows. Several senior cadets are working on the Methods of Instruction and Cadre course, which teaches them to instruct younger cadets and will allow them to progress to the Master Cadet Course.

For further information about the Combined Cadet Force and the opportunities it offers, please click here