News - Royal Air Force

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News - Royal Air Force

GLOBAL GATEWAY

On the cover

Minister of State for the Armed

Forces visit to RAF Brize Norton.

Editorial Team

RAF Brize Norton

01993 89 then Ext for external callers:

Sqn Ldr Richard Smith Ext 6150

Sqn Ldr Dave Melmoth Ext 7276

Flt Lt Tony Lett Ext 7075

RAF Lyneham

01249 89 then Ext for external callers:

Sqn Ldr Nick Worrall Ext 6407

Fg Off Ryan Kerr Ext 7366

Sgt Lesley Palmer Ext 4003

Editorial Correspondence

The ‘Global Gateway’ Editor

FHQ, RAF Brize Norton, Carterton,

Oxfordshire OX18 3LX

Email: BZN-GlobalGateway-editor@mod.uk

Distribution

RAF Brize Norton: Sgt Hayley Crame Ext 6011

RAF Brize Norton: Cpl Phil Thorp Ext 2267

RAF Lyneham: SAC Kylie Whitaker Ext 7311

RAF Lyneham: Cpl Danni Jones Ext 7336

Please send all articles to the Global

Gateway Editors Account. Photos should

be separate from articles, in JPEG format

and a maximum of 4MB, please do not

embed them in articles. Articles should be

received by 12th of the preceding month

for inclusion in the following month’s

magazine.

In March’s issue

News

4 From the Station

Commanders

5 From the Editor

6 Award For Excellence

8 New Air Officer

Commanding

No 2 Gp visits

10 AirTanker Hub

10 A view from the FSTA Cockpit

14 Programme Future Brize

18 New Parachute Trainer lets

Troops leap into the Virtual

World

20 216 Sqn TriStar to Bastion!

22 Min(AF) visit to RAF Brize

Norton

24 Bite Size CRL

28 RAF Lyneham succeed at

RAF Ski and Snowboard

Champs!

The Team

30 Air Movements

Squadron

32 47 Sqn - Cunny’s

Expanding Empire

36 JADTEU Movember

36 Christmas on Op

HERRICK, 1 AMW Alpha Flight

37 RAF Cresta Novice Ice Camp

38 RAF Waterski and Wakeboard

Championships

40 TMW Caribbean Adventure

42 RAF Brize Norton Buccaneers

Rugby update

43 Kites for Heroes

44 Ex CROWN PINNACLE

46 30 Sqn

48 Defence Movements School

49 99 Sqn vs 47 Sqn Rubgy Revenge

52 Major Hawker Memorial

54 XXIV Sqn, a new era…

60 Ops Sqn Review of 2010…

66 Engineering Plans

Community Focus

70 Community Matters

70 Carterton Charity Car Boot

Sales

70 Police - Burglary appeal

71 Carterton 10K Run

75 St George’s Day Celebration

72 Padre’s Peace

74 Our letter from the Vatican

74 Carterton Community

College

71 Primary School Engineers

in Action in Carterton

76 Neighbourhood Watch

Update

77 The RAF Factor -

have you got it?

80 Town Council Surgeries

80 Gateway School

80 What have you got to lose?

81 The Salvation Army

81 Families Consultative Group

Meeting

81 99 Sqn Partners Events

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Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 ORU.

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in no way implies endorsements or responsibility, by the ‘Gateway’. The MOD or any Service Establishment - including RAF Brize Norton,

for the advertiser or its advertised product or service. Furthermore, neither the Editor nor any Service authority will become involved in any

dispute arising out of any advertisement appearing in the ‘Gateway’.The ‘Gateway’ is not an official publication; unless specifically stated

otherwise, all views expressed in the ‘Gateway’ are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect official MOD or Service policy.

© No part of the ‘Gateway’ may be reproduced in part or full without the written permission of the Editor or publisher. Photographs are

Crown Copyright - all rights reserved - unless credited to an individual photographer. The ‘Gateway’ is the magazine of RAF Brize Norton and

is published monthly by kind permission of the Station Commander - Gp Capt Stamp.

Managing director: Ron Pearson • Sub editor: Kerry Wells • Sales managers: Sally Haynes/Amanda Mains

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 3


News

It gives me a great deal of

pleasure to be writing this

Foreword to the second

edition of the Global

Gateway Magazine. But

I have to admit to some

sadness too. All of a

sudden the Hercules Force

is set to move to RAF Brize

Norton this year and I

will handover the reins

of this magnificent Force

to Gp Capt Dom Stamp

on 4 July. This spring

will see the first major

movement of personnel

as 33 (Eng) Squadron’s

advanced party leaves

for RAF Brize Norton in

Gp Capt Gladston

preparation to receive my

fleet of 33 Hercules (24 J models and 9 K models). Of course

at any one time, I have 8 C130s deployed across the globe on

operational detachments (including Afghanistan, the Middle East

and the Falkland Islands), around 7 aircraft in depth servicing at

Marshalls Aerospace in Cambridge, along with several aircraft

supporting the Trials & Evaluation and Defence Exercise Programs;

so a large proportion of the Hercules Force is always away from

RAF Lyneham. I expect to see the flying squadrons arrive at RAF

Brize Norton in June, along with the balance of 33 (Eng) Squadron,

and this will represent the main body of the move. 1 Air Mobility

Wing, Tactical Medical Wing and 47 Air Despatch Squadron Royal

Logistics Corps will complete their moves later in 2012.

I must also say that this move represents a new era for the

Hercules Force and for RAF Brize Norton. The Hercules Force

will inevitably bring a culture and flavour of its own to RAF

Brize Norton and this is entirely appropriate. I have recently

reconfigured the Force and we have seen the re-emergence of

the Hercules Operational Conversion Unit: 24 Squadron who are

now responsible for all Hercules training. The Hercules J model

will remain in RAF service until 2022, albeit the older (much older!)

K model will finally retire in December 2012.

So despite the upheaval associated with the upcoming move,

which will involve a significant number of personnel and families

moving to a new and different environment, it is an exciting time

as we embark on another new chapter for the Hercules Force.

Having served at RAF Brize Norton myself and lived in the local

area, I know that the Station will give everybody from RAF Lyneham

a very warm welcome indeed.

4

FROM THE STATION COMMANDERS

If there is one

constant at RAF

Brize Norton

at present, it

is that change

continues

around the

Station at a

frenetic pace.

Having just

completed

my 2-week

schedule

of forums,

which saw me

undertaking

briefings with

every shift and

unit on the Gp Capt Stamp

Station, I know

from your honest feedback that issues surrounding change

are at the forefront of most people’s minds. The Station

is preparing itself for three major change programmes:

Programme Future Brize, the implementation of the

Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) and

the role-out of the Catering Retail and Leisure (CRL)

project. These will inevitably induce challenges and a

certain amount of disruption to all of our lives, but I also

foresee a huge number of opportunities for us all. In this

respect, I was pleased to see how positive people were

when discussing our Station’s future during the forums,

and most grateful for the multitude of great ideas that

emerged during our question and answer sessions.

I intend to use many of these great initiatives in

addressing some of the issues that the Station faces.

However, I am also fully aware that communication is

key for all those at RAF Brize and RAF Lyneham during

these changing times. As such, your command chain will

continue to keep you updated as to progress surrounding

the various change programmes that we face and I

will continue to run my monthly Station Commander’s

Briefings to allow you to access me directly and to ask any

specific questions that you may have. This is an incredibly

exciting time to be based at Brize Norton or to be moving

to the Station; a time of development and growth, set

against our continued and vital contribution as the global

gateway to operations around the world.


Q & A from the Stn Cdr’s

Forum in February 2011

Q. Bike Racks - With the need to reduce

the number of cars coming onto station

and people riding more bikes, will more

bike racks be put up around station?

A. More bike racks are being procured

and will be made available across Station

very soon. Priority places like the Gym and

Messes will be supplied first. You should

use your chain of command to apply for

racks to be placed at your place of work if

there is a need.

Q. Housing - With personnel been housed

in Service Families Accommodation as far

out as Farringdon and Fairford, can you

put on a bus on to transport personnel

to and from Brize?

A. To put buses on was an initial thought,

and the feasibility of running buses during

certain core hours was considered. However

the busing idea could be extremely expensive

to the Station, and problematic for shift

workers outside of core hours. The concept

is still been looked into by my team, but it is

far from a simple solution.

Q. Catering Retail and Leisure - Will CRL

have an impact on the movement of

vehicles around station?

A. Hopefully CRL will reduce the level of

movements of vehicles around Station as

places like JADTEU and 99 Sqn may not be

forced to drive over from the south-side or

across camp for messing. It has also been

suggested that a “NAFFI” type wagon could

be implemented by ISS Defence (the CRL

contractor) to provide a food delivery service

around station - they are looking into this

at the moment. All of this should reduce

the requirement for people to drive around

Station and stop people tying up our already

scarce car parking.

Q. Station Visits - We’re a very busy

Station. Will there be a reduction in

Station visits at our busiest times like

during the RIP?

A. I always try to reduce the number of

Station visits at our busiest times, but this

must be set against the value of engaging

with our visitors, some of whom are very

senior. Our ability to influence their views

of how we operate by showing them what

we do and the pressures we are under can

also help our cause, so visits are important.

FROM THE EDITOR

Pile-in!

So here we are in March already. With

spring in the air and a spring in our step,

we’re marching on towards a summer

of Herculean fun. With the forward

engineers of 33 (Eng) Squadron piling-in

each day, it won’t be long before we have

hundreds of hungry-herc-heroes to feed,

but fear not....

Lip-Smacking!

The RAF recently signed up to Catering

Retail and Leisure (CRL) with ISS Defence,

and RAF Brize Norton will be one of the

15 lucky Stations in the initial Super

CRL roll-out. You can look forward to

lip-smacking catering outlets, rebrandedretail,

and enhanced leisure facilities from

June this year. Find out more in the “Bite-

Size” CRL update inside.

Tickle your Fancy?

Fancy a thrill? How about skating

down an ice sheet on a tray? What about

a spot of boarding or skiing on water or

snow? If that doesn’t tickle your fancy

how would you fare being strapped to a

board and using a kite to get across the

Channel? Find out all about these crazy

exploits in this Global Gateway.

News

Avoid Disappointment

Please do keep your articles coming

into the new combined Brize Norton

and Lyneham Editors’ email account:

BZN-GlobalGatewayEditor@mod.uk.

The deadline for your interesting,

amusing, memorable, operational,

team or community focused news

content is the 12th of each month. If

you need to publicize an event, please

get in early to avoid disappointment!

Sqn Ldr Dave Melmoth

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 5


News

Award for Excellence

The Award for Excellence (AfE) is a monthly award, sponsored by British Aerospace (BAE)

Systems, to recognise the efforts and achievements of personnel from RAF Brize Norton and

RAF Lyneham and has been running since 2007.

RAF Brize Norton

Last month’s award was an extra special affair for a number

of reasons. Owing to operational tempo, our October and

December 2010 winners were not able to receive their awards

in the correct month, so on February 14th 2011 three separate

citations were read. The worthy winners received their awards

from AOC 2 Gp, Air Vice Marshal Osborn.

The AOC was on top form and was genuinely impressed by

the extraordinary efforts that had been made by the winners;

he was even more impressed when SAC Marshall invited him

to attend one of the notorious entertainment nights that he

organises for his Sqn!!

The Winners…

SAC Marshall – Logistics Sqn

“SAC Marshall has had a highly positive and enduring impact

on Logistics Squadron since his arrival in July 2007. Marshall

is a dynamic, bright and charismatic individual who deserves

recognition for his exceptional achievements. Due to Marshall’s

outstanding performance, he has been granted A/Cpl rank

and served as JNCO Forward Delivery for the last four months.

Marshall remains steadfastly resolute, despite obstacles that

he may face and constantly volunteers for tasks to expand and

develop his already considerable trade knowledge. He recently

acted as the focal point for a short notice, high priority demand

for Fire vehicles to MPA. Due to the nature of the task and the

requirement to arrange the move of dangerous goods amongst

a multitude of other spares, Marshall was the natural choice

to liaise closely with Air Cmd, MT Role Office and DSCOM.

Working to extremely tight deadlines he efficiently raised the

appropriate paperwork and secured swift air transportation for

a number of operationally dependant fire vehicles. This action

has prompted admiration and praise from a number of sources

for his professionalism and dedication. It is this level of detailed

commitment and personal ownership of tasks, from cradle to

grave, that sets Marshall apart from his contemporaries”.

SAC Marshall receiving AfE from AOC 2 Gp

SAC Coyne – Station Flight Planning

SAC Coyne receiving AfE from AOC 2 Gp

6 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

“Over recent months SAC Coyne has had a direct impact on

Ops especially during the recent RiP where her performance has

been right on the button. The most telling part of this period

is that she has supervised other TG9 personnel in the absence

of an NCO. Given her time in rank and levels of experience this

has impressed everyone. Throughout periods of surge flying she

has been at the forefront in Flight Planning always ensuring

the flying crews are well-prepared with the correct charts and

publications to enter Theatre. When the Stn Cdr’s AfE was

originally championed by now Gp Capt Toner, this is exactly the

performance he aimed to target. Although employed behind

the scenes in Stn Ops her output is pivotal to what we do”.

Minhad based C-17 (period 14-25 Dec)

Crew Members:

Flt Lt Kevin Latchman, Flt Lt Richard Millard-Smith, Sgt

Nick Dawood, Sgt John Whitby, Sgt Craig Harris, Sgt Al

Clarke, SAC Tom Crane

“Flt Lt Latchman and his crew immediately acted on Station

Commander Brize Norton’s revised intent, advised and assisted

ASCOT in generating a workable plan to achieve the aim and

set to task. Rather than their scheduled 4 sectors, the crew

completed 21 sectors in 9 days, including 3 double theatre

runs on the 20th, 22nd and 23rd December. During that time

they successfully moved 1542 passengers along the ALOC that

would otherwise have been subject to further intolerable delays.

They remained totally focused on their main effort

throughout. They encountered endless plan changes and

managed to sustain the ALOC whilst teetering on the very edge

of imposed flying crew duty limitations and subsequent Chain

of Command extensions. In doing so they brought relief to

troops who were desperate to be re-united with their families

for the Christmas period. The exhausted crew finally returned

to Brize Norton at 0100 hrs on 25 December”.


Group photo including Minhad based C-17 Crew with Air Vice Marshall Osborn (AOC 2 Gp), Stn Cdr RAF Brize Norton,

Mr. John Dobson (BAE Systems), Mr. John Watson (Total Aviation Handling Resources) and SAC Ellis, 101 Sqn - Flight Safety Award

MACR Brown – LXX Sqn

RAF Lyneham

MACR Brown receiving AfE from the Stn Cdr, RAF Lyneham

and Mr John Dobson (BAE Systems)

MACR Mark ‘Skid’ Brown, was recently presented with an AfE

by the Stn Cdr and Mr. John Dobson from BAE Systems. Justly

rewarded, MACR Brown, as the LXX Sqn Warrant Officer,

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

chaired the Squadron Stand-down Committee to ensure that

LXX Sqn received the appropriate and dignified send-off that

it deserved.

In addition to this MACR Brown not only went well above

and beyond the call of duty to ensure that Sqn personnel were

effectively managed as they progressed to their new posts

but both the legacy of the Sqn and indeed its future were

protected. The successful stand-down of LXX Sqn and its future

resurrection will be successful, and in no small part, due to the

tireless efforts of its Warrant Officer.

MACR Brown has approached these tasks in an exemplary

manner, demonstrating standards of leadership and

management which others would be hard pressed to emulate.

The Next Award?

Do you have someone in your team who deserves recognition

for their outstanding efforts? Anyone can be put forward for

the award; civilian, military, individuals or teams. The Award for

Excellence is currently run separately at both RAF Brize Norton

and RAF Lyneham and will be integrated during 2011.

The Award for Excellence OICs are: Flt Lt Nick Welsh (OC

FP Trg Flt, RAF Brize Norton BZN-AfE-Admin@mod.uk (95461

7203) and Flt Lt Ben Smy (SF Ops Officer, RAF Lyneham

sfopsofficer@47sqn.raf.mod.uk )(47 Sqn OpsO – 95481 6368).

CHARLIE’S TAXIS Ltd

CARTERTON / BURFORD

BRIZE NORTON

01993 845 253

Long and short stay car park

facilities available

7


News

New Air Officer Commanding No 2 Gp

visits RAF Lyneham and RAF Brize Norton

8

As an opportunity to gain more of

an insight into the latest challenges

faced by the stations, Air Officer

Commanding (AOC) No 2 Gp, Air-Vice

Marshal (AVM) P C Osborn CBE RAF

recently visited RAF Lyneham and

RAF Brize Norton.

Taking command of No 2 Gp in January

2011, the purpose of the visits was for

AOC 2 Gp to see selected elements of the

two Stations and to engage on matters of

the moment with an emphasis on current

operations. It was also an opportunity

for station personnel to give a true and

honest depiction on the reality of the

latest challenges faced by the stations.

The programme at RAF Lyneham in

late January involved the viewing of both

static C130J and K Hercules models,

followed by discussions with aircrew from

24 and 30 squadrons and STANEVAL. The

AOC moved onto the Multi Faith Prayer

Room to be met by the Stn Padre, to gain

a greater understanding of Op PABBAY

and discuss areas of particular interest

from both parties’ perspective. In the

safe hands of the crew from 47 Sqn and

the weather in a permitting mood, the

AOC was transported by Hercules onto

RAF Brize Norton before returning to RAF

High Wycmobe.

AOC 2 Gp, AVM P C Osborn CBE RAF at

RAF Lyneham

The AOC, returned to visit RAF Brize

Norton on 14 Feb 11 to garner a better

appreciation of RAF Brize Norton’s

capabilities and to discuss Programme

Future Brize. The day started with a visit

to Programme Future Brize and a meeting

with AO/ATAAR, Air Cdre Ager and the

Programme Manager, Gp Capt Houghton

in attendance. This was followed by a

visit to welcome the new OC 101 Sqn,

Wg Cdr Brookes, and to pass on the

thanks of 2 Gp to the outgoing 101 Sqn

Boss, Wg Cdr Lushington. 101 Sqn were

able to articulate their drawdown plan

and discuss their role in the Op HERRICK

Air to Air Refuelling detachment. They

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

were also able to discuss contracts and

the civil compliance issues for carriage

of passengers on VC10 aircraft. Prior to

lunch, the AOC participated in the Flight

Safety Award and Award for Excellence

ceremonies; presenting the winners with

their awards in each category (pgs 6 &7).

The afternoon was the turn of the

Force Headquarters and a chance for

the AOC to see what progress had been

made. OC FHQ, Wg Cdr Mike Carver,

conducted a presentation on the Force

Concept and discussed the current

interactions with external agencies and

the way these links would work in the

future, with the arrival of FSTA and the

Tactical Air Transport Force Elements

(Hercules C130s). Following an in-depth

brief on the passenger mounting and

booking process, the AOC paid a visit

to ASCOT Operations. Flt Cdr ASCOT

was able to discuss the tasking chain

for an aeromedical evacuation flight

and the timescales involved, as well as

WO ATMC expressing his issues and

concerns currently being worked on.

On departing, the AOC expressed a wish

to visit ASCOT Operations again in the

near future see how they have become

embedded within the FHQ and how they

work on a daily basis.

Medal/Award Presentation

The WOs’ and Sergeants’ Mess played host to the first RAF Lyneham Honours and Awards ceremony of 2011 on

Tuesday 25 January. The event saw the Station Commander Gp Capt John Gladston present 14 awards ranging from

Operational Medals earned in Iraq and Afghanistan to Royal Warrants. The full breakdown or awards and recipients

can be found below:

MACr Jones - Royal Warrant

MACr Parsons - Royal Warrant

Flt Lt Phillips - Joint Commanders

Commendation

FS Middleton - LS&GCM Clasp

CT Lewis - LS&GCM

Sgt Bartram - LS&GCM

Sgt Fisher - LS&GCM

Sgt Yorke - LS&GCM

Sgt Jeffrey - LS&GCM

Mr Wiltshire - Imperial Service Medal

CT Lewis - The Iraq Medal

Cpl Whitley - OSM Afghanistan

Cpl Stewart - Flight Safety Award

SAC Markey - Flight Safety Award


News

As you may have heard, AirTanker

is moving into RAF Brize Norton

in May this year to occupy our

new hangar and support building – the

AirTanker Hub’. We appreciate that

many of you will not have had the chance

to see the building yet, so we thought

we would outline the key features and

layout for you here.

The Hub will be our main base for all

of the maintenance, technical support,

flight operations and business activity

in the provision of the comprehensive

Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft (FSTA)

service. But it will not just be AirTanker

in the Hub; initially, we will be joined by

members of the Strategic Transport and

Air to Air Refuelling (STAAR) Team (the

MOD DE&S Project Team), as well as our

Primary Sub-Contractor Field Service

Engineers. These two groups will play

a key role in the operation and having

everyone in the same building will help

to maintain and develop our already

close working relationships, ensuring

that AirTanker provides a highly efficient

service tailored to meet the RAF’s needs.

We are also working in partnership with

the MOD to help provide a solution

for interim C130 hangar space, with

AirTanker ready to offer the use of one

of the bays within the hangar for line

maintenance.

The hangar area of the building has

two bays, one for line maintenance and

one for base maintenance. The base

maintenance bay has been fitted with

nose docking and in time will incorporate

a fully docked solution. There are also two

overhead cranes integrated into the steel

work of the building to provide heavy

lift capability, as well as a mezzanine

floor, which allows immediate cockpit

access via the nose docking. A number of

engineering support areas surrounds the

hangar bays, providing bespoke storage

and workshop capabilities.

However, the building is much more

than a hangar; it also incorporates a

four-storey support building, which will

house all personnel involved in the day-

The AirTanker Hub

So much more than a hangar...

Wet Contacts…

FSTA successfully refuels F-18 aircraft during first wet contacts

AirTanker is pleased to confirm that the Future Strategic Tanker

Aircraft (FSTA) successfully achieved its first wet contacts

on the Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU) during a test flight on

Friday 21 January 2011. Several contacts were made with F-18

aircraft using Cobham’s 805E FRU, with over six tonnes of fuel

transferred at various points of the flight envelope. The contacts

to-day running of the FSTA service. The

Engineering team will be based on the

first floor as will the AirTanker business

support teams.

The STAAR team and the Flight

Operations Centre will be based on the

second floor. The Centre will be a 24hour

operation governing all FSTA related

tasking, and any associated issues that

occur during the day of operation up to

48 hours in advance. Operational issues

include anything from crew sickness to

an urgent operational task – the scope

is fairly large! In terms of the centre

itself, the traditional white boards with

magnetic strips and markers will be a

thing of the past as our set up will include

a variety of ‘real time’ live data feeds

and a media wall, which will allow us to

react appropriately to rapidly changing

situations.

No 10 Squadron will join us when it

stands up in July 2011 and eventually,

we will have two RAF Squadrons on the

top floor. This floor has been designed to

the MoD’s specification and incorporates

a 118 square metre briefing room with

multiple layout options. It also has the

best views, especially the two corner

offices for the future Squadron bosses!

Away from the main building, the Hub

also has a separate Motor Transport and

Ground Support Equipment Building.

The AirTanker Training Building

development is also running ahead of

schedule and is currently undergoing the

internal fit out process, which includes

installation of the Communications and

Information Systems. We are planning

to be able to utilise this facility before

the first aircraft arrives towards the end

of the year.

These new facilities will give us all

of the required functions to be able

to provide the best possible service to

the RAF. We will be holding an official

opening event before we move across in

May. We would love to invite everybody

to this but numbers are limited so we will

also be holding a bowling competition at

the Astra Bowl on 31st March in order to

involve a wider range of people. If you are

interested in entering a team, please get

in touch with Flt Lt Will Andrew DSAMO

on ext 5884 or by email at: William.

Andrew647@mod.uk. All proceeds from

the event will go to the RAF Benevolent

Fund.

Finally, AirTanker will be hosting tours

for Brize personnel at 14:00 and 15:30

on 24 March and 28 April. If you are

interested please get in contact with

AirTanker at tours@airtanker.co.uk

stating which tour you would like to

join. For more pictures and video of our

infrastructure at Brize, please see our

website at www.airtanker.co.uk

were carried out at an altitude of around 15,000ft and at speeds

from 250kt to 325kt. All systems were reported as working

correctly. Since this, Airbus Military has been continuing testing

on both the FRU, as well as the under wing Pods

The first wet contacts are a significant development in the FSTA

programme, which continues to run on schedule. The flight

testing programme will carry on in Spain until spring this year,

when receiver clearance trials are due to switch to Boscombe

Down. The first FSTA aircraft is due to be delivered to the RAF

at Brize Norton towards the end of this year.


A View from the

FSTA Cockpit...

Tim Butler:

Programme Test Pilot for Airbus Military on the Future

Strategic Tanker Aircraft

By Lindsay Harbottle,

Corporate Communications

Officer, AirTanker

Tim joined Airbus Military after

a 20 year career in the RAF

where he flew heavy aircraft

ranging from the Victor to

the C130J. He is a highly

experienced test pilot and is

the Chief test pilot on the

FSTA programme. He has

been the Captain on most

of the certification and

qualification flights so far.

I managed to pin him down

during his busy schedule to quiz him on the FSTA

aircraft and his experiences.

1. How did you move into test piloting?

Well, I had heard that test piloting involved far too much

mathematics and therefore had dismissed it as an option. My poor

results in O-level maths did not stand me in good stead. However,

after a discussion on holiday with a close friend, I was persuaded

that the RAF was looking for practical test pilots and apparently

maths was not so important! I went through a selection procedure

and a year-long course before testing new flight deck systems on

the Sentry. After that I was on the Sentry and C130J programmes

before moving on to Airbus Military.

2. What are the best bits?

I get to fly in a way that 90% of pilots will never get to and be the

first to try new systems.

It’s great for me to be able to say, “oh yes, I was the first to test

that...”

3. And the worst?

Paperwork! I’d always rather be flying, like all pilots. I do roughly 10

hours of paperwork and reporting etc, for every one hour of flying.

4. In what ways has the FSTA been different to previous Multi-Role

Transport Tanker (MRTT) aircraft?

All of the A330’s fly the same way, so essentially there is little

difference in handling, just different avionics. The FSTA does have

more ‘Gucci’ kit than other MRTT’s I have flown. The FSTA offers a

step-change in technology from their current AAR fleets.

I´m very confident that everyone involved in operating FSTA is

going to be highly impressed by it. The load-carrying capability,

flexibility and comfort of the crew and the passengers are streets

ahead of what people are used to. There will be low workload for

the aircrew and all the advantages of the basic A330 cockpit in

terms of space and working environment. And the planners are

going to love its capability and reliability.

5. What is the next stage of the programme?

We are continuing to test the AAR systems - especially the Fuselage

Refuelling Unit (FRU) - as the Pods have previously been proven

on the Australian MRTT. The new flight management system is

also continuing its development along with the Mission Planning

Systems.

6. In your opinion is our programme running well?

Ha ha – is this my key PR question? We are finding that stuff is

working better than we expected, meaning the testing is sticking

to the plan. The great thing for FSTA is that it has come after the

Australian MRTT – most of the small niggles have already been

ironed out.

7. Have you had any particularly hair-raising moments on previous

test programmes?

Luckily, the extensive risk analysis before flights reduces the

amount of potential hiccups. Generally though, the MRTT

receiver trials can be a bit more exciting. The odd moment of

being too close and having to change direction quickly always

gets a little hot under the collar but it is more a case of pulling

away and having another go after a series of deep breaths.

I did once have to land the MRTT with a hose trailing from

one of the Pods – see youtube.com for the full story!

8. What does your normal schedule look like?

I don’t have one! The aircraft plan is scheduled one week in

advance so we make other arrangements to fit around it but the

plan changes regularly at short notice so the other plans end up

fitting in around the flying. But the job doesn’t just involve flying - I

am often travelling to customers for design, documentation and

customer reviews... and desperately trying to catch up on emails

in-between.

9. The A330 is a ‘fly-by-wire’ aircraft. What does it feel like compared

to a conventional aircraft?

The natural stability of the aircraft is automatic unlike a conventional

aircraft so the pilot will have more capacity to concentrate on other

aspects of the sortie. The other obvious difference in the cockpit

is the side stick. This is the main directional control for the aircraft,

which is conventionally a centrally positioned control column. Some

pilots seem to be a little nervous with the side stick at first but within

30 minutes, they get the hang of it and it is no longer a worry.

The aircraft is good for military flying as the cockpit is designed

to give the pilot the information they need at their fingertips.

Formerly, an AAR aircraft would have had a four man crew with

a Flight Engineer and Navigator, but now most of their roles are

completed by a small box and the Mission Systems Operator.

Combined with some of the routine flying being taken care of by

the fly-by-wire system, this means the Onboard Information System

(OIT) gives the pilot a better overall view of the situation than in a

conventional aircraft.

10. What have been the greatest challenges and the greatest highlights

of the testing so far?

The biggest challenge was developing the aircraft to be easy to fly

as a receiver. Although it is not on the FSTA, it has been a large

area for development for the other Multi Role Tanker Transport

(MRTT) programmes.

The greatest highlight is the overall sense of achievement that

the MRTT platform works! All our hard work, and paper work, has

been worth it!

11. How do you find working in Getafe?

After a number of years based near Boscombe Down in the UK, I

have now made the move to Spain. I am really enjoying the lifestyle

and much of my spare time is spent exploring all that Spain has

to offer. My Spanish is also gradually getting better, although my

two children and wife have picked up the language annoyingly

better than me!

The big aspect of the FSTA programme is the second phase –

receiver clearances at Boscombe Down and Tim will be staying

with the programme for the seven month period starting in April.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 11


12

SHRIVENHAM PARK

GOLF CLUB

“Good golf doesn’t have to be expensive golf”

Set in mature parkland on the edge of the expanding village of

Shrivenham and on the borders of Oxfordshire and Wiltshire, we

are just 10 minutes from junction 15

of the M4, 10 minutes from Swindon and 20 minutes from Oxford.

• 18 hole mature parkland golf course

• Excellent greens

• Visitors, societies, groups and

novices welcome

• Loyalty scheme

• 7 days-a-week

• Regular special offers

Whether you are an absolute beginner or a

golfer of many years standing,

you can count on good golf and a warm

welcome at Shrivenham Park.

01793 783853

www.shrivenhampark.com

Pennyhooks Lane, Shrivenham, Swindon, Wiltshire. SN6 8EX

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Open 7 Days A Week For Food • Families Welcome

All Food Home Cooked

Seasonal Menus • 70 Seat Dining Room

Specials 2 for 1 £7.00 Mon - Sat 12 - 2.30 and 5 - 6

Food Mon - Sat Lunch 12 - 2.30. 5 - 8pm

Sun Lunch 12 - 2, Evening 5 - 7

Unbeatable Prices and Value for Money

Parties Welcome, Large Beer Gardens

Ample Car Parking

Come and sample our unique Kiwi Hospitality


Join us this Mother’s Day at the

Oxford Witney Four Pillars Hotel

Join us at the Oxford Witney Four Pillars Hotel this Mother’s Day, Sunday 3rd April and

treat Mum to a 3 course carvery lunch with a gift for just £ 15.95 per person.

Plus, join one of our party nights for an evening of fantastic

entertainment. Enjoy a 3 course meal followed by dancing

to our resident disco from just £19.95 per person!

Friday 15th April Disco Decades

Dance the night away to tunes from throughout the

years! £19.95 per person

Friday 9th September ABBA Cabaret Night

Sing along to a live performance by the ABBA Babes

followed by some of your favourite tunes from our

resident disco. £29.95 per person

Friday 28th October Disco Decades

Dance the night away to tunes from throughout the

years! £19.95 per person

Children 5- 12 £ 7.95 and under 4s eat free

Please call us on 01993 779777

for more information or to make a booking

www.four-pillars.co.uk/witney

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 13


News

FSTA - only one year to go!

Happy Birthday to Us

This edition of the Programme Future Brize

(PFB) Newsletter hits the streets as we mark the

2nd anniversary of the formation of PFB in Mar

09. The progress made by my team over the

last 2 years, with the invaluable and unstinting

support of personnel at RAF Brize Norton and

RAF Lyneham, has been outstanding. A key

action placed on PFB in Mar 09 required us to

Operate, Collocate, Integrate

Gp Capt David

Houghton.

meet a ‘hard target’ of vacating Lyneham by 31 Dec 12 which,

in turn, meant that we would need to move the C-130 Force

and other supporting elements to Brize Norton in Summer

2011. In best management speak, those timelines were

‘challenging’, but the work needed to make things happen on

time is all in train – we are on time and on target.

That said, we cannot and will not rest on our laurels. The

move of the C-130 Force is just one element of PFB, albeit

an important one interms of direct and indirect support to

deployed operations. Much more (including the relocation of

other critical Formed Units (FU), SLAM completion and SFA

development) remains to be done. The continued development

of RAF Brize Norton, and the financial investment in the Station,

is testament to the importance placed on PFB’s requirement

to create a fit for purpose sole APOE and AT/AAR MOB. The

importance of the APOE to Defence is uppermost in the minds

of all my team, and they will remain focussed on doing what

is necessary to ensure that our colleagues across the RAF,

Royal Navy and Army continue to receive the exceptional,

operationally-focussed support from the AT/AAR Force and

associated FUs that RAF Brize Norton and RAF Lyneham

currently provide.

Programme Future Brize Vision

14 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

- www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Bite Size Info

Parking spaces are being created by

remodelling the existing car parks.

• Changes to access gates onto Stn will be

trialled from Mar 11. This may include opening

Crash Gate (CG) 7 for shift changes and access

for Southside workers only, and permanently

opening CG1. CG2 is the main gate and will

remain with the same opening hours.

• More bike racks are being installed around

Station and the provision of extra shower

facilities is being reviewed.


Furniture: Confirmation has been received

from Lyneham that personnel moving from SFA

at Lyn to SFA/SSFA when posted to Brize can

bring their military furniture with them. This should

alleviate any issues with a surge in Barrack Stores

requirements for personnel at Bzn.

All HIC Applications (F1132)

must be submitted electronically.

Open all hours

Fa irford

R J Pentland on 25th January. Rev (Wg Cdr) Edgar, Senior Chaplain said:

‘The opening of the new Stn Chapel and Chaplaincy Centre is a significant

moment in terms of how chaplaincy is delivered at RAF Brize Norton. It is

designed to meet the spiritual and pastoral needs of a busy and operationallyfocused

military community, many of whom are simply not around or available

for Sunday worship. Therefore the chaplains concentrate on workplace

ministry in support of operations, providing pastoral care and a listening ear to

personnel, with the Station Chapel providing an oasis of peace and tranquility in

the midst of a hectic 24/7 battle rhythm – a place where anybody and everybody

can come and sit and rest,and perhaps find something of the peace of God.’

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

News

Visit

http://25.165.63.201:8881/

Default.aspx for the latest

information about Doctors,

Dentists and Schools and

much more. For information

about the locations

highlighted above, visit the

HIVE.

It can also be found on

the RAF Lyneham and RAF

Brize Norton Programme

Future Brize Internet site at:

http://www.raf.mod.uk/

rafbrizenorton/aboutus/

programmefuturebrize.cfm

Families’ Clinic at Lyneham HIVE

15 Feb at 1100 – 1300hrs

23 Mar at 1800 – 1930hrs

An opportunity for families to ask questions

about housing, allowances, timeframes and

general information about the closure of RAF

Lynehamand relocation to RAF Brize Norton.

The New Station Chapel and Chaplaincy Centre was opened by

Chaplain-in-Chief, The Venerable (AVM)

15


News

16

Construction Progress

B117 for 4FP Wing HQ is taking shape and due to complete in Jul 11.

The C-130J TMRF (simulator) building is progressing well and is due

to complete in Jun 11. Hangar 88 for C-130 CLF, Fwd Stores and Role

Equipment had the blast doors removed to create a more modern facility

with electric roller doors. These new doors are linked to the fire section

and will open automatically if the fire alarm sounds. Hangar 88 is due to

complete in Jul 11.

Rumour Buster

Have you heard something about Future Brize that you would

like clearing up?

Please e-mail: Helen.Cooksley829@mod.uk

Helen Cooksley – Reporting and Communications Officer 01993 896144 or

95461 Ext 6144

We have heard that there is an access problem to the houses at Fairford, as there isn’t a

passes and permits and therefore we won’t be able to allow friends to visit us?

At present, RAF Brize Norton personal passes for Service personnel and dependants will be permitted at Fairford

and the OC at Fairford is investigating how to introduce a passes and permits office to smooth access for visitors to

the SFA. DE(Housing) are also liaising with OC Fairford on this matter.

Are there any services at Fairford that we can use?

There is a Child Development Centre next to the SFA. Although it is currently closed, proactive individuals within

the SFA who want to provide this function could re-open it.

The nearest local shop is approx. 2 miles away and the nearest supermarket is in Lechlade. The Snack Bar and the

Gym could be used by Personnel and dependents and access is under review.

Can we go over and view the SFA at Fairford?

Several Lyneham personnel have already turned up at the main gate unannounced and have been turned away. Until

the housing stock is ready for occupancy, please refrain from trying to view the properties. Floor plans of the Fairford

SFA should be available in the next PFB Newsletter.

Operate, Collocate, Integrate

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton


More News

Where to get info…

The Intranet site is constantly updated. Visit:

http://25.165.63.201:8881/Default.aspx (Internal site

ONLY)

For external information, visit:

http://www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton/aboutus/

programmefuturebrize.cfm

Operate, Collocate, Integrate

Carterton

Homes

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

e-distribution

@Would you like to receive this

Newsletter electronically?

E-mail:

Helen.Cooksley829@mod.uk

to be added to the

distribution list.

News

Floor plans for the future SFA housing in Carterton

are now available on the Intranet under Programme

Future Brize, Latest News and Information page.

http://25.165.63.201:8881/NewsInfo.aspx Please take the time

to explore the site if you haven’t already.

CARTERTON TOWN COUNCIL

Town Hall, Alvescot Road, Carterton, OX18 3JL

Public information,

bus timetables, travel

tokens, Thursday

market, room hire,

Welcome packs for

new residents

Tel 01993 842156

Email: jeustace@carterton-tc.gov.uk

www.carterton-tc.gov.uk

17


News

New Parachute Trainer

lets Troops Leap

into the

Virtual World

The Chinese in 90

BC are reputed

to have been the

first to experiment

with the concept

of parachuting by

compelling condemned prisoners to

jump from towers and cliffs using a

variety of ‘umbrella type’ designs. The

idea was taken further in the 1400s by

Leonardo da Vinci who designed a ‘tent’

frame-style parachute with the intent to

parachute soldiers into battle fired from

cannons. Not surprisingly his idea was not

taken forward. Subsequent experiments

in parachuting across the centuries

led in the 1700s to parachuting as we

know it today. Jumping from a balloon,

Andre Jacques Garnerin of France

successfully demonstrated parachuting

by means of a harness connected by

rigging lines to a parachute canopy.

Due to excessive parachute oscillations

however, the jump made him violently

sick! Subsequent parachute development

and improving techniques, far in advance

of Garnerin’s first design provide us an

exhilarating extreme sports activity and a

diverse capability used by military forces

throughout the world.

With concepts in parachuting

continually improving, concurrent

improvements in parachute training

have followed. Parachuting is not without

risk so every avenue should be explored

to minimise risk to as low as reasonably

possible. This has resulted in ADW

embracing computer technology to enable

18

An on-screen view of a parachutist in the

virtual world

parachute

training to be conducted

in the virtual world by

means of a Virtual

Reality Parachute Training

Simulator (VRPTS). This has

been procured with funding

to the tune of £500,000

provided jointly by the

FsAST Project Team, the

HTPT and RAF Brize Norton.

Tender for contract was won

by a Gloucestershire based

company, Pennants Training

Systems who designed and

built the system. The VRPTS

is located in the ADW PTS

training hangar to be used along side

and compliment more traditional training

apparatus.

The VRPTS provides eight individual

work stations with students hanging

from a metal frame in standard issue

parachute harnesses specially modified

for use with the equipment. By means

of networked computer imagery, viewed

through virtual reality goggles, individuals

can experience and practice parachuting

in a range of virtual environments either

onto land or into water. Through the

goggles, each trainee can see themselves

walking off the ramp of a C130 Hercules

aircraft and jumping into the sky. After the

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

The VRPTS showing

individual work stations

and the instructors

command station

An individual work station showing a student parachutist

suspended by a harness

‘compulsory

count’ and ‘check canopy’ they

must then control their descent and

land at a designated point on the

landscape. Students can practise jumping

as individuals or as a ‘stick’ (collective

for a group of parachutists exiting the

plane one after the other) within the

same virtual environment. At all times

the instructor can see on high resolution

screens what each trainee can see

through their goggles as well as an overall

picture of the individual or group descent.

The most important feature of VRPTS

is its ability to replicate malfunctions and

emergencies, preparing trainees to deal

with a full range of situations they could

encounter in a live environment.


Gp Capt Stamp, Stn Cdr RAF Brize Norton officially

opens the VRPTS

Representatives from DCRE, WSF, ADW, FsAST PT and

Pennant Training Systems at the opening of VRPTS

The official opening of the VRPTS by

Stn Cdr RAF Brize Norton on 24 Jan 11

marked the culmination of a multi-party

effort in bringing the project to fruition.

The facility is now being used for training,

and ADW would like to express thanks to

all external agencies involved and those

at RAF Brize Norton namely the staff of

DCRE and WSF in providing what is a

ground-breaking training facility fit for

the 21st century.

By Sqn Ldr Gez Whitten-Brown

Airborne Delivery Wing (ADW)

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 19


News

216 Sqn

TriStar to Bastion!

With work on Camp Bastion’s runway

now complete, this month sees the

first 216 Sqn crews landing at Camp

Bastion as part of a change to the

Op HERRICK Airbridge. As of the

beginning of March 2011, all TriStar

Op HERRICK flights will fly into

Bastion as opposed to Kandahar

whilst continuing to route via RAF

Akrotiri.

The change has largely arisen owing

to the UK’s shifting Area of Responsibility

in Afghanistan, with the majority of UK

Service personnel operating in Helmand

Province. Camp Bastion is situated in

Helmand, as opposed to Kandahar

Airfield that sits to the East in Kandahar

Province. Other advantages should

also arise; there will be less pressure

on intra-theatre Air Transport, freeing

up aircraft, such as the Hercules, for

other tasking. Aero medical evacuations

involving the TriStar should also be made

easier. The TriStar, in conjunction with

the C17, is responsible for air lifting

injured troops out of theatre, generally

with the C17 transporting the more

critically ill patients. Because the main

field hospital is already based at Camp

20

Bastion, patients can be placed directly

onto the aircraft, as opposed to having

to be flown to Kandahar first. Flexibility

on arrival times may, potentially, be

increased. Kandahar can be an extremely

busy airfield, accommodating a large

amount of civilian traffic as well as

military aircraft, meaning flights are

restricted to particular ‘slots’. The TriStar

should not be subject to such restrictions

at Camp Bastion.

For Sqn crews certain challenges arise

when operating into a different airfield.

There are terrain issues, as with most

Afghan airfields and hence differing

ATC procedures to get to grips with.

In terms of facilities, Sqn members

should experience a benefit as they will

be accommodated in two-man rooms

as opposed to the six man type at

Kandahar, hopefully reducing the effects

of cumulative fatigue.

In terms of 216 Sqn’s preparation for

the move, the Sqn has combined local

night training sorties, to prepare for the

relative lack of cultural lighting at Bastion,

along with Simulators replicating the

expected approach profiles. Despite low

availability of aircraft, the Sqn engineering

section has successfully generated

aircraft to maintain the Airbridge as

well as these additional training tasks.

This is a remarkable achievement and

whilst their efforts are often only

viewed in the background, the

Sqn could not have completed

their preparations without

their support. At the end of February

OC 216 Sqn, along with STANEVAL and

Training Flt, flew ‘prover sorties’

to Camp Bastion. This

validated the planned

procedures and paved the

way for future Sqn crews

operating into the airfield.


News

Minister of State for the

Armed Forces (Min(AF))

The Minister of State for the Armed Forces (Min(AF) deputises for the Secretary

of State and has responsibility for operations, operational policy and force

generation (which includes readiness, recuperation, key enablers, deployed

operational logistic delivery, and operational training exercises). Min(AF) leads

on:

• Supporting the Secretary of State on operational aspects of SDSR

implementation;

Force Generation (including the Reserves and mission-specific and collective

training);

• Detention issues;

• Operations (excluding Afghanistan) including Counter-Terrorism, Counter-

Piracy, UK Operations, Northern Ireland, Iraq, and the Balkans;

• Judicial Engagement, including Judicial Reviews, Public Inquiries, Inquests

and Service Inquiries policy and operational casework;

• Permanent Joint Operating Bases and Overseas Territories;

• Defence Training Review and Borona Programme; and

• Counter-proliferation, arms control and disarmament.

Minister of State for the

Armed Forces Nick Harvey

Born in 1961 at Chandler’s Ford, Hampshire, Mr Harvey was educated at

Queen’s College, Taunton and Middlesex University.

Mr Harvey worked in communications and marketing from 1983 - 1992,

mainly for the City consultants, Dewe Rogerson and entered the House of

Commons as Liberal Democrat MP for North Devon in 1992.

22

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton


Min(AF) Visit to RAF Brize Norton

Mr Nick Harvey, Liberal

Democrat MP for North Devon

and Minister of State for the

Armed Forces (Min(AF)) in

the coalition Government,

visited RAF Brize Norton

on Tuesday 15 February to

familiarise himself with the

diverse roles that the Station

plays in support of the UK

Defence mission. Although

the Minister’s stay on Station

was short, and made shorter

still by his having to return to

the Commons early in order

to vote, he was keen to meet

as many personnel as possible

to thank them personally

for their dedication and

professionalism, especially in

support of the

Op HERRICK Airbridge. On

arrival, Min(AF) received a brief

from the Station Commander

which provided an overview of

the current operational role of

the Station and its mission to

deliver AT and AAR support to

ops and exercises in support of

UK Defence.

The Minister was then

hosted by each of the flying

squadrons and was able to

view, in turn, the C-17, VC

10 and Tristar aircraft. On

board each aircraft he met key

squadron personnel to learn

of the roles, current issues,

risks and challenges faced.

Members of the CCAST and

Aeromedical Evacuation Team

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

TUE 15 FEB 11

from Tactical Medical Wing,

RAF Lyneham were on board

the C-17 with a mock-up of a

casualty and all the equipment

required to repatriate our

wounded.

Following a working lunch

in the Officers’ Mess, when Mr

Harvey met with the Station

Executives and other key

Station stakeholders, it was

off to receive a brief from Gp

Capt Houghton, Programme

Manager for Programme

Future Brize. This brief set the

context for the transformation

of RAF Brize Norton into the

UK’s sole APOE and AT/AAR

Main Operating Base with

the transfer of the Hercules

Force from RAF Lyneham

this year. The significant

on-going work to develop

the necessary technical and

domestic accommodation

was highlighted. Due to the

Minister having to leave for

London early, the planned visit

to Airborne Delivery Wing had

to be cancelled. Nevertheless,

the aims of the Minister’s

visit were met; he left with a

much better understanding

of what the Station and its

personnel does. Visits of this

nature happen infrequently

and the Station was able

to enhance its already high

reputation at the highest

levels of Government. The visit

was a success for ‘Team Brize’.

23


News

So what is CRL?

• The RAF’s earlier Pay As You Dine (PAYD) journey was

disappointing and in Jan 06 the RAF recognised that the

Defence PAYD model did not provide the same quality and

quantity as before and that our ethos could be eroded as a

consequence.

• This model is the refined, modern and fair way to deliver

catering, retail and leisure pursuits across 15 RAF Stations

bringing our CRL facilities into the 21 Century.

• Under CRL living-in personnel will stop paying the Daily Food

Charge that is taken out of their wages each month, and they

will only pay for each meal that is taken.

• CRL will provide a more flexible environment in the messes,

coffee shops and bars for personnel to eat, shop and socialise.

• The Super CRL contract was awarded to ISS Defence on the

5 Jan 11 with the implementation to start from 1 Jun 11, the

contract will run for 7 years with 3 one year options

• We have insisted that our future partner add value to the

process rather than shave standards and take profits directly

from the Public Funded Services reducing output.

• The time line of the roll out of each CRL facility is at yet to

be confirmed.

Who are ISS Defence?

• They are a Danish based company with a global turnover

of £9.5bn

• Concentrating in Facility Services e.g. security, catering

cleaning, landscaping, retail & leisure

• Employing 485,000 people worldwide

• Based in 53 countries worldwide

• UK turnover £830m

• They Employ 42,500 people in the UK (more than the RAF!)

• They will introduce high street brand names providing

enhanced choice and reflect consumer demand.

24

Catering, Retail and Leisure (CRL)

Bite size info

Some of the partnership companies working with ISS

What work streams are currently being

undertaken to start the contract on 01 Jun 11?

• Currently ISS Defence are working with the RAF Catering

Training School, RAF Chefs and TG19 SMEs to develop menus

to best suit the RAF.

• ISS Defence are conducting visits to each Super CRL Unit

to finalise refurbishment plans, staff training, IT systems,

transferring of equipment, security procedures, and the transfer

of MOD Civilian employees working in the catering facilities

under TUPE legislation to ISS Defence.

• From the visit to Brize ISS Defence identified that to take over

the Families Club ‘Jaggers Bar’ and the Bowling Alley would not

By Cpl Aaron Hill

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

be commercially viable to the contract or to RAF Brize Norton

and therefore they will be left out of CRL contract and will

continue running under current Station arrangements.

What are the Super CRL Units included in the

contract?

• Boscombe Down

• Leuchars

• Boulmer

• Linton-on-Ouse

• Brize Norton

• Marham

• Coningsby

• Northolt

• Digby

• St Mawgan

• Honington

• Waddington

• Lossiemouth

• Wittering

• Leeming

Food and Beer

The purchasing power of the contractor will also offer a

very flexible and reasonably priced retail menu allowing the

individual to chose the style of food they want when they want.

Their purchasing power will also ensure that the price of alcohol

will be extremely competitive. Currently food/drink prices

vary from Station to Station and the Super CRL contractors

will endeavour to standardise prices across all Stations. It will

however, remain the decision of the mess committees how

much gross profit percentage is added to bar prices. Mess

Committees will still own their own stock but be expected to

purchase it from ISS Defence.

Vending

All Station vending will be the responsibility of ISS. Offering a

modern, flexible and competitively priced vending solution for

all areas on Station, including T Bars. The Station CRL Team

will soon be tasked with gathering information on all vending

needs on camp, including when the current section vending

leases finish.

Officers’ Mess — WOs’ and Sgts’ Mess

The two Messes will have a modern new outlook but will still

maintain the ethos and culture that goes with each Mess. ISS

Defence will offer a concierge service providing dry cleaning,

DVD rental, newspapers and magazines delivered to your

room, taxi arranging service and much more. A toned down

Costa Coffee facility will offer the opportunity to relax in the

Officers’ Mess with a coffee and paper. ISS Defence will work

in partnership with each Mess Committee to get the best out

of CRL. ISS Defence are not allowed to make profit on formal

functions however they are on informal and private events

which will be priced at agreed rates. Heritage items within the

Messes will remain Mess property and stay in situ ensuring a

sense of tradition.


Junior Ranks’ Mess (JRM)

The JRM will offer free WiFi in the coffee lounge with

complimentary tea and coffee to offer you the chance to browse

the internet after a busy day’s work. Shift workers will be offered

a value meal to ease the release of personnel throughout the

day. If you are in a hurry there will be a Grab and Go service

throughout the day. ISS Defence will offer a pre-pay booklet

of £2 meal deals which will help with budgeting and the end

of the month.

APOE Catering (In-Flight and Gateway House)

There are great plans ahead for In-flight Catering and Gateway

House with Free Wifi, DVD players and DVD rental to take back

to your room, fast food facilities for when you are in a rush,

a new shop to buy last minutes items, improved bar area, a

modern travel information desk at reception, free ATM offering

£s $s €s and many more entertainment developments.

Air Terminal

You will see some exciting changes in the Air Terminal from

a Real Bean Café to a Airside Shop. The Duty free shop will

offer items such as electronic goods, cigarettes, confectionery,

aftershaves and toiletries. There will be free Wifi in the Air

Terminal to help you pass the time. There will be a Airport shop

to help travellers with little items they may have forgotten. The

Coffee shop will be a 2 way shop offering services to Arrivals

and Departures.

Junior Ranks’ Village (Spotlight and Shop)

ISS Defence have engaged SPAR as their partner for retail. There

will be many new facilities and a redevelopment of the Heroes

Bar, SPAR Shop and the foyer, offering free Wifi a New Juniors

Ranks Village to give it a modern effect and relaxed café bar

culture similar to the high street. This area will open up to all

ranks during the day and remain a Junior Ranks facility in the

evening.

Oasis Café

Subject to final approval, the Oasis café will become a Café

Qualita coffee shop offering Costa Coffee with free Wifi and

the JPA terminal will remain in place offering you a comfortable

environment to relax and socialise. This will be an ideal location

to unwind and enjoy a drink after a work out in RAF Brize

Norton’s fantastic new gym. ISS will also look at the viability of

extended opening hours once they are managing the facility.

Possible new look for the JRs’ Village

Possible new look for the

APOE Catering

Possible new look for the Air

Terminal

Q&A

What does the term Super CRL mean?

Super CRL is the terminology used by the RAF that

encompasses 15 RAF Stations within in the first rollout phase.

Will the 3 Mess System remain?

The 3 Mess system will remain in the RAF. ISS Defence

understand the need and importance of the 3 Mess system

and the Mess ethos.

What will happen to our Sqn Bar and Tea bar?

ISS Defence have no intention of taking Sqn Bars or Tea

Bars off you. They will offer the chance to purchase stock

from their suppliers, which will cut your cost and offer you

better convenience. How you wish to run your bar will still

stay up to you.

Can I pay the same price for food as I do now?

Yes. ISS Defence will offer the customer a choice of meals

at the current Daily Food Charge. They will also offer a

competitive priced choice of meals to give the customer

variety.

What happens if I run out of money?

There is a system in place to ensure that you still get food.

More details will be given out before the Daily Food Charge

is turned off.

When will the Daily Food Charge be turned off?

This date is yet to be decided. ISS Defence will want all

IT networking installed, tills in place and training given to

catering staff before this will happen.

Will TG19 personnel be working in the CRL contract?

All Super CRL Stations will have embedded TG19 personnel,

at all ranks, working alongside ISS Defence in order to provide

catering services, whilst being able to maintain and improve

their own skills. TG19 personnel are also seen as vital to

maintaining Mess Ethos.

Will CRL profit be re-invested back into the Station?

Yes and it is called Gainshare! It is a share of the commercial

partners’ profit paid to the Station (slightly like the old NAAFI

rebate). It is designed to encourage the commercial partner

to increase the volume of business, they are capped at how

much profit they can make before a payment is made to the

Station. The contract model provides a minimum Gainshare

across all Super CRL units of £3.15M over the 7 years of the

contract. Once the Station has received their Gainshare it is

split into Public and Non-public funds and is allocated by the

Station Cdr and their committees.

For more information see the CRL website,

http://www.hqstc.raf.r.mil.uk/review/COS_SPT/RAF_CRL_

New/index.html

Or there is a CRL link on the Brize Homepage. Alternatively

contact Flt Lt Robey, WO Green or Cpl Hill in the catering

office. If you would like a section/flt/sqn brief we would be

happy to provide this.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 25


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Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 27


News

RAF Lyneham Succeed at RAF

Ski and Snowboard Champs

The 2011 Royal Air Force Ski

Championships were held

from 8 Jan-22 Jan 2011.

Once again the RAF skiers

and snowboarders descended

upon Saalbach-Hinterglem

Austria, with over 900

competitors attending over

the 2 weeks.

The 2011 Champs saw a

particularly triumphant time

for RAF Lyneham’s skiers

and snowboarders. The Stn

put together an experienced

snowboard team to

successfully defend and retain

the RAF Champions Inter-Stn

title, whilst the Stn skiers were

dominant in the individual

events. Overall the Stn made a

significant contribution to the

success of the championships

with personnel from across

the Stn contributing in an

array of roles from officiating

28

the events,

instructing

beginners and

racing at the

highest level.

This success

culminated with

a number of

Stn personnel

being selected

to represent

the RAF at the

Inter-Services in

Meribel.

This year it

was pleasing

to see so many new skiers

and boarders, from all

rank ranges, turning out

for their first champs. All

beginners receive free lessons

in their preferred discipline

of either ski or boarding,

whilst all other competitors

get the opportunity to

undertake a couple of days

of lessons, before racing.

Once the racing is over, there

is the opportunity to take

advantage of the extensive

skiing and riding across the

Saalbach-Hinterglem area.

Off the slopes there was a

comprehensive Apres-Ski

Programme, which all Stn

Personnel fully embraced!!

The RAF Ski Champs

provides a fantastic

opportunity for the pursuit

of alpine-winter sports and

is open to all RAF serving

personnel. The Champs consist

of team and individual events

including both men’s and

women’s competitions. These

events are for RAF personnel

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

of all abilities and not only

encourage competitiveness

but also help improve skill

levels. Furthermore, the Ski

Champs aims to facilitate the

transition from recreational

skiing and snowboarding to

racing by promoting tuition

and appropriate training.

Planning and booking for

the 2012 RAF Ski Champs will

take place in early September

2011; therefore personnel

wishing to attend should

keep a watch on the Brize and

Lyneham Stn Intranet where it

will be initially advertised.

Flt Lt Hill

OIC Wintersports,

RAF Lyneham


Lyneham Snowboarders

Triumph for Second

Consecutive Year

With the intention of maintaining the position

of RAF Champions into its closing year, RAF

Lyneham put together an experienced team

for the annual Inter-Station Snowboard

Giant Slalom Competition at the 2011 Ski and

Snowboard Championships, held in Saalbach,

Austria…

RAF Lyneham Snowboard Team

Led by the RAF Men’s Snowboard Team Captain, Flt Lt Jim Smith,

the four man team also comprised of Flt Lt Tim Burgess, FS Paul

Granycome and SAC(T) Mark Foster.

The event involved competitors racing two timed runs down

the course with the best three combined times counting. The

team put in strong first runs with Jim’s being the fastest of the

day, closely followed by Mark and Paul. After the first heat they

had a strong lead, but needed to secure three more safe fast

runs in the second heat.

With a revised second course, the running order of racers

was reversed, giving those that raced slower in the first run

a fighting chance. Tim gave a sound opening time, allowing

the remaining three to increase the pressure on the other

competitors. All four pushed hard to keep the lead and despite

two minor slides, which could have lost them the lead, they

maintained the advantage to grasp victory with three of them

being placed in the top seven.

This event is only in its second year at the Championships, but

this convincing victory means that RAF Lyneham holds onto the

trophy, and with the Station gearing up to closure, we fittingly

remain unbeaten.

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Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 29


The Team

Air Movements Squadron...

...visit the National Memorial Arboretum

Early on Thursday

10 February, C

Shift, Air Movements

Squadron met at the

Air Terminal ready to

embark on a staff ride

to Staffordshire to visit

the National Memorial

Arboretum.

Once the brews and newspapers were

bought we hopped on to the mini-buses

and embarked on the 2 hour journey.

We swung into the car park just short

of 11 o’clock and as we rubbed the sleep

out of our eyes we were introduced to the

‘volunteer army’ who do a range of duties

from meeting and greeting through to

giving presentations in the chapel for the

daily act of remembrance.

As soon as the hellos were finished we

went into the chapel in the nick of time

to attend the daily act of remembrance.

It started with a brief history of the

arboretum itself including why it is there

and how it is funded and maintained.

The Memorial Arboretum is the UK’s

year-round Centre of Remembrance,

a living and lasting memorial to

commemorate and celebrate those

who have given their lives serving their

country; it includes not only military

personnel but also people who have

lost their lives or suffered as a result

of conflict. They receive over 300,000

visitors a year mainly due to the Armed

Forces Memorial - before it was revealed

in 2007 the Arboretum only attracted

65,000 visitors a year. It contains over

16,000 names of Service personnel from

all 3 Services who have died in conflicts

since the end of the Second World War

to the present day, including the Falklands

and The Gulf War. In addition there are

smaller memorials all over the Arboretum

to various Regiments, Squadrons and

other units.

The site consists of 150 acres within the

Staffordshire National Forest, and even

though it is only a young arboretum has

in excess of 50,000 trees, the majority in

which are either dedicated or donated by

individuals or integrated within a specific

memorial such as an avenue of chestnut


As we walked up the

stairs to the entrance of the

Armed Forces Memorial,

we were overwhelmed by

the vast walls covered with

the names of the many

brave men and women

who gave their lives for

their country.

30 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

- www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton


trees called ‘The Beat’ which was funded

by every Police Force. The chestnut was

chosen as the first truncheons were made

out of the durable wood of this tree.

As we walked up the stairs to the

entrance of the Armed Forces Memorial,

we were overwhelmed by the vast walls

covered with the names of the many

brave men and women who gave their

lives for their country. The Memorial

was dedicated by HM The Queen on

Friday 12 October 2007 in a service

led by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Names of those lost are added to the

memorial each year and dedicated at

a service in June. It is designed so that


the sun shines on its central wreath at

11 o’clock on the 11th day of the 11th

month during the annual Remembrance

Day service. Unfortunately the 2 large

bronze sculptures inside the Memorial

were covered over to prevent damage

while maintenance work is being carried

out during our visit.

Upon reaching the centre of the

memorial we were given a brief by Cpl

‘Lips’ Harris on the reasons why we are

in Afghanistan and the history of Op

HERRICK. After the brief our DAMO (Duty

Air Movements Officer), Flt Lt Brown,

laid a wreath which read “On behalf of

The Senior Air Movements Officer, the

Officers, SNCOs, Airmen and Airwomen

of the Air Movements Squadron, RAF

Brize Norton”. It also included the quote

“Lest We Forget” which is a caution

against forgetting those who died in war.

After laying the wreath we headed

down to the Basra memorial wall which

is a monument to the 178 UK Service

personnel and one MoD civilian who

lost their lives in combat operations in

Iraq and also lists members of Coalition

Forces who were killed whilst under UK

command during 6 years of conflict. The

original memorial was built in Basra in

2006 and stood outside the front of the

Headquarters there. It was the focus for

a Remembrance Service during the 2008

Poppy Appeal launch. The wall was built

and eventually dismantled and re-erected

at the Arboretum by British soldiers from

37 Armoured Engineer Squadron, a

personal gesture to commemorate their

fallen comrades.

Here we had a brief about Op TELIC,

the wall itself and our involvement in Iraq

by Cpl ‘Swampy’ Meadows. The wall is

particularly pertinent to those at Brize,

as one of the plaques is dedicated to Sgt

‘Baz’ Barwood, who was killed in action

serving in Iraq in 2008. He was stationed

at Brize as a Motor Transport Driver after

originally joining the RAF as a Regiment

Gunner in 1985. He was commemorated

at Brize by the renaming of the Station’

main road to “Barwood Avenue”.

After the 2 briefs, we had the time to

reflect and take in the entire arboretum at

our own leisure and visited the separate

memorials including the RAuxAF and RAF

Regiment memorials.

As we came to the end of the day

after exploring all the arboretum has to

offer and reflecting on the memorials

we headed for the mini buses for the

journey back to camp. This was an eye

opening day that was both emotional yet

interesting for all.

SAC Liam Cassidy,

C Shift, Air Movements Squadron

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 31


The Team

47 Sqn

Cunny’s Expanding E

Although on into February 2011 has been an exciting and busy time on what is

now Lyneham’s largest squadron! At a time when the majority of the squadron

were deployed across the pond on many North American based exercises 47 has

welcomed 15 crews to their new home on the south side of the airfield.

The expansion of a squadron brings many challenges

both from an administrative and operational perspective.

Faced with these OC 47 took the only option left to him:

he gripped the bull by the horns, and led from the front…the

exercise front! In his absence 47s capable Execs planned the

transfer while Cunny enjoyed 2 weeks flying (and skiing) on

Ex Crown Pinnacle in California. Finally returning, tanned and

relaxed, OC 47 just about made it in time to welcome the new

pilots and loadies to 47 in his own inimitable style.

Exciting times lie ahead and we all look forward to working

closely with our new sqn members. As the operational Tactical

Air Transport squadron, 47 look forward to all squadron

members, old and new, working together both at home and

abroad on joint exercises. However, I for one can’t wait to

witness the newly increased bar presence of 47 sqn both during

the closing festivities of Lyneham and then in establishing

ourselves over at Brize.

New Arrivals

For some, the turmoil of moving squadrons was too much to

bear. One individual went to extreme lengths to delay his arrival

on 47. Planning far in advance Spatton’s efforts came together

in the early hours of day 1 on the squadron with the birth of

Isabelle his bouncing new baby. We wish Spats, Nina and baby

Isabelle well and look forward to Spats finally joining 47 after

his paternity leave!

Announcements

Wedding bells have been ringing on 47 sqn over the festive

period. In case any of you had missed the fact that 47 SFs

newest captain took the plunge, his new bride took out an

almost full page spread in the Times advertising the fact that

he is off the market! Best wishes to Jim and Lisa-Marie on a

long and successful marriage!

32 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Departures

For 47 the re-organisation of the Herc Force hasn’t been without

its losses. It has come as a surprise to many that Stu, “The

Phantom Loadie” has been posted to “The OCU”: many didn’t

realise he was actually on 47! Sticky on the other hand always

gave 117.5% whilst on the sqn so increasing to 120% in line

with the new rate of VAT it is fortunate we have managed to

find an equally ginger, if nowhere near as funny, replacement

before he leaves us for 24 Sqn. Mega. Have fun guys and

remember, if you miss 47 and need a morale boost, the new

24 Sqn video should help raise the spirits!

If we thought that the Boss’s disappearing-act was impressive

at the start of the year, he actually has a lot to learn from Gareth

(don’t call me knobber). In preparation for his forthcoming

exchange to Italy Gareth thought it would be prudent to ease

himself in to living outside the UK. And so it was that Gareth

packed his 80s vintage 2m20cm skis and fluorescent ski jacket

and headed west for 5, yes 5 weeks on exercise out there.

Despite his legendarily dogged pursuit of training opportunities,

Gareth has only managed 5 days skiing whilst in the US. Fingers

crossed this prepares him sufficiently for living an hours drive

from a ski resort in Italy. We’re not jealous, honest!

Exercises

Popeye and his motley crew from the 47 Sqn Historic Flight

deployed some of their ancient K model Hercs on a commerative

exercise to Belize and California. Good times were had and

recently inspired by Gareth’s hectic programme of training,

Popeye was seen to programme no fewer than 6 2 ship sorties

in one day. The exercise proved to be excellent training for all

involved. Forever culturally and socially aware Pinball led the

charge in sampling all the delicacies the locals had to offer.


mpire

When not spending time in RRGs, the boys managed to spend

some time at San Pedro indulging in a spot of SCUBA diving.

Bored with Belize for now, the K warriors popped up to

Ridgecrest to join 47-J and other elements of the Herc Force.

Ex Crown Pinnacle was a big success with much needed

training interspersed with trips to Mammoth for a spot of

skiing, and boarding for those 40 year-olds who think they’re

still teenagers!

The hectic pace of Exercises continued with both Ks and Js

deploying onward from Ridgecrest. The Ks returned to Belize

to finish off what Pinball had started, whilst for the Js the

destination was San Diego for High Altitude Para training. I’m

sure we will get all the gossip once everyone finally returns to

this side of the Atlantic.

Sports

The winter months don’t lend themselves to sporting

achievement, however, this has not deterred 47 Sqn cyclists. In

preparation for the second round of the Lyneham-to-Northolt

inter-station challenge, Tommo, Phil and Breaker have been

running lunch-time cycling sessions to ensure victory remains

with the less well funded, amateur but never-the-less more

successful team from Wiltshire. Hopefully the next edition of

the Globe will hold successful results from the race on 3 May.

And Finally...

We look forward to a period with the majority of the squadron

back in the UK. We will be using this to the opportunity to

welcome our new Squadron members in proper style. We

look forward to the return certain squadron member, currently

undertaking a captain conversion. In anticipation of his arrival

ear plugs have been issued to all and Daz is being encouraged

to attend a sign-language course…we can only hope!

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

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34

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Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 35


The Team

JADTEU MOVEMBER

Just as winter landed at JADTEU, 7 soldiers and 1 civilian took on the “Movember”

challenge: 30 days and 30 nights, 8 moustache...1 charity.

After consulting our

Commanding Officer (Lt Col

D Crook), we were given the

thumbs up to carry out the

challenge. Our one bit of advice

was that the ‘Tashes’ had to

stay within military regulations.

After sending numerous emails

and spreading the message via

word of mouth, eight people

stepped up to the challenge:

SSgt Stu Jack, Cpl Phil Mcintosh,

LCpls Billy Smith, Daz Lea &

Knox Ratakalou, Ptes, Wes

Gee & Francois

Louw, and Mr

mike burberry

The 30-day

challenge was

underway

and despite

pressure from wives, fiancés,

girlfriends and partners,

everyone stuck it out for the

full month. Prostate cancer its

something we should all be

aware of, and is the biggest

cancer-killer in men. Rugby

players grow moustaches each

year and even some famous

footballers jumped on board

this time. We raised £377 in

total and we would like to say a

massive thank you to everyone

who supported us, took the

“mick” and sponsored us. It

was certainly a long 30 days!

For more info, visit:

http://www.prostate-cancer.

org.uk/.

LCpl Billy Smith, JADTEU

Thinking of growing a ridiculous moustache for Charity? Look out for details of the 2011 Movember later this year!

Christmas on Op HERRICK 1 AMW Alpha Flight

Alpha Flight continued their

stoic work in Afghanistan over

one of the busiest periods of

the year in theatre. Their efforts

were hampered by several

challenges that always seem to

arise at this time of year. At the

opposite end of the Airbridge,

RAF Brize Norton strived to

keep the Tri-Stars serviceable

and considering the amount

of flying hours that that they

clock up it is commendable that

the 216 Sqn engineers manage

to keep them airworthy. Of course they

suffer the odd technical snag here and

there and the Christmas period was no

exception. The unserviceable frames

meant that the Airbridge had to rely on

the 2nd ALOC with Charter aircraft flying

freight and passengers into Minhad, with

the C17 fleet carrying out the final leg

into Theatre. It is at this point that Alpha

Flight’s work load picks up with them

rapidly processing passengers and freight

onto their final destination throughout

theatre.

The challenges of the Airbridge were

further compounded by some of the

36 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

heaviest snowfall in the UK for a decade.

Afghanistan was similarly affected by

the white stuff with runways all over the

country resembling barren wastelands

scattered with frosty aeroplanes unable

to move off of their parking spots.

Consequently nearly 1000 passengers

were faced with the prospect of being

stuck in theatre for Christmas. The

dedicated Movements staff, flight crews

and chirpy Air Loadmasters had to pull

out all the stops and stretch their working

day and flying hours to get as many

stranded passengers home for Christmas,

as well as getting the all important

Christmas presents from loved ones back

at home out to the troops on the ground.

However, through all of the adversity

and shear volume of work Alpha Flight

managed to keep morale high, taking the

challenge in their stride. With all the hard

work done they mustered the energy

to sit down to a well earned Christmas

dinner of turkey and beef served with all

the usual trimmings, washed down with

a fine vintage blackcurrant squash or two.

The meal served as a timely reminder of

home and loved ones that Christmas time

is so important for.


RAF Cresta

Novice

Ice Camp

On Sunday the 8th Jan 11,

myself and four other novices

were invited to take part in the

Cresta Novice Ice Camp in St

Moritz Switzerland. For those

of you who are unaware, the

Cresta run is known as the

oldest, steepest and most

demanding ice-run in the

world. Winding down a

steep slope in Switzerland’s

Engadine Valley, the Cresta

Run starts on the outskirts

of St Moritz, passing the

tiny hamlet of Cresta as it

falls 157m to finish 1212m

away. An expert Cresta rider

will complete the Run in just

over 50 seconds, crossing

the finish line at around 130

km/hr, head first on a 35kg

toboggan with his face just a

few centimetres from the ice.

Four of us drove up from

High Wycombe to St Moritz

in our version of a “Top Gear

Challenge”. It took us around

14 hours before we arrived in

St Moritz -luckily for us just

before the snow hit! We

were shown to our apartment

then met with the RAF Cresta

Chairman Wg Cdr Tim Hill

who briefed us on what we

had got ourselves into! He

also took us to the Hotel

Soldanella’s Bar where the

RAF has their own corner with

memorabilia and photos of

past Cresta riders.

We had to be up at 6am

each morning as the Cresta

only opens from 0800 to

1200 every day. We arrived

at the club house for the

“Death talk” which is done

by the club secretary, he also

showed us a skeleton made

up of riders x-rays who had

fallen off then introduced us

to our “Gurus” who would

teach us the technique of not

falling off!

After our brief lessons and a

quick look at the other riders it

was our turn to ride. My first

run was nerve racking and all

I remember is being out of

breath at the bottom. I had

done my first run and now

had the bug. By my third run

I had mastered it shedding

20 seconds off my first run!

3 runs no fall, although Wg

Cdr Hill watched our runs

and explained how we still

had a long way to go. By the

second day we had all got

down in the below 60 seconds

and I still hadn’t fallen at the

dreaded shuttlecock which is

where 99% of crashes take

place.

Day 3 and I was pretty

confident, more so because

of the fact that I was the only

member of our group not to

have crashed - this was soon

to change! As I started to go

down the hill, I was thinking

brake, brake, but nothing

happened! Before I knew it I

was lying in the snow hearing

the tannoy “Spiers in the

snow, he is up and

appears unharmed”.

I had one more

practice before

the Lighting

Cup and

crashed once

again. My

excuse was

that I wanted

to get my

crashes out of

the way so I

could get three

clean runs in

the competition

- it worked - I

completed my race

and finished in a modest

38th position (out of 45).

Day 4 was our last day of

riding and the run was at its

fastest since we got there.

We managed to get 6 runs

in. I also completed my fastest

run of the week a 60.1 with 2

crashes at the shuttlecock for

good measure.

Overall the Cresta run trip

was a brilliant experience

and I would definitely advise

anyone who is seeking a thrill

to try it. I look forward to

completing the run again next

year. Let me know if you’re

interested and I’ll give you

more details.

SAC Adam Spiers

PSF, RAF Lyneham

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 37


The Team

Waterskiing and

wakeboarding is a fun,

dynamic and fast growing

sport. With a similar

split to the snow sports,

wakeboarding is comprised

of riding a wide board and

pulling off surface, wake and

aerial tricks behind the boat

– as long as you are looking

good at the same time!

…By comparison, tournament

waterskiing is split between

three disciplines; slalom,

tricks and jump. Slalom skiing

involves skiing around buoys

on either side of the boat at

ever increasing boat speed

and shortening rope lengths;

trick skiing is all about turns

and flips on a short stubby

ski; and finally, jump skiing

is only dependant on getting

the longest distance from a 6ft

wooden and fibreglass ramp,

and skiing away regardless

of style!

During the first week in

September, South Lakes Ski

School in Bedfordshire again

played host to the annual

RAF Waterski and Wakeboard

Championships, this being its

23rd year. This event involved

some 50 RAF personnel,

from Akrotiri to Wyton,

who took the opportunity

to participate in three days

of training and two days

of competition covering all

of the disciplines. Monday

through to Wednesday is

dedicated to training. With

two tournament standard

boats operating throughout

the day, along with top

quality professional tuition

available from the team at

South Lakes, participants had

a great opportunity to practice

and improve their skiing and

boarding, whatever their

initial standard. Wakeboarders

were also able to make use

of the cable-ski facilities at

Box End Park each day to

gain experience on the cable.

Wednesday evening played

host to a barbeque and band

38 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

night, with the competition in

all disciplines taking place on

Thursday and Friday.

2010 saw two Brize Norton

personnel take part in the

Champs:

SAC Emma Holness from

101 Sqn, who only took

up wakeboarding this year,

improved immeasurably over

the week, even donning on

a pair of skis for the first

time!. She threw herself

wholeheartedly into the spirit

of the Champs, giving every

discipline a try. Skiing on trick


skis has been likened to ‘skiing

on two bars of soap’, so just

to be able to stand up on

them first attempt is a major

achievement. However, the

most astounding result of her

incredible week was left until

last. Anyone who wants to

participate in the Novice Jump

event has to be assessed as

competent on the skis prior

to being dragged over the 5

foot jump at 24 mph. Of the

3 ladies that tried only Emma

was allowed to compete,

and although she didn’t land

a scoring jump she gave it

really good try. So, having

only started to wakeboard

this year, and only started

skiing at the Champs, Emma

was crowned Overall Ladies

Champion, a remarkable

achievement.

CT Matt Larkin from 101

Sqn has been waterskiing

for many years, and was

attending his 13th RAF

Championships. Matt won the

Pro Trick and Pro Jump events,

and came 3rd in Pro Slalom

resulting in him clinching the

Overall Mens Title for the

third time. This performance

was enough to get Matt

selected to represent the RAF

at the Inter Services Slalom

competition held at Box

End Park, Bedfordshire the

following week. As part of a

six man RAF team he finished

3rd, resulting in the RAF

winning the Waterski Slalom

Inter Services competition.

Emma and Matt’s

performances were sufficient

to net 3rd place for Brize

Norton in the Inter-Station

Cup, only beaten by teams

with numerous competitors.

If this has whetted your

appetite and you would

like to give it a try, the RAF

Brize Norton Waterski and

Wakeboard Club operates

from Hardwick Parks Caravan

Site near Witney. It is part of

the Southern Units Waterski

and Wakeboard Club which

includes Lyneham, Benson

and Odiham. The facilities

include a brand new Ski

Nautique Tournament Ski

Boat, a static caravan and

a range of wakeboards,

waterskis, ringos and all

relevant safety equipment to

meet the needs of personnel

new to the sport. There are

regularly BWS qualified drivers

and instructors on hand to

provide advice and tuition,

and the Club can cater for

section days, team building

exercises or individuals just

wishing to give it a try.

Information can be found

at www.raf.mod.uk/

rafwaterski/ or contact:

Flt Lt Nathan Jones, 101

Sqn, RAF Brize Norton, Ext

6008

CT Matt Larkin, 101 Sqn,

RAF Brize Norton, Ext 6095

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

39


The Team

Caribbean Endeavour is a Joint-Services Adventurous Sail

Training Centre (JSATC) expedition open to RN, Army, RAF,

Reserve Forces and University Officer Training Corps Personnel.

This year Fg Off Emma Cole of Tactical Medical Wing was lucky

enough to spend 2 weeks of the Christmas period with the

expedition.

The expedition utilised the JSASTC Yacht ‘Endeavour’, which

set sail in October 2010 from Gosport to the Canary Islands

before changing crews for the transatlantic trip to Marigot Bay

in St Lucia. Emma takes up her story:

“When we arrived in St Lucia we joined the Yacht and had the

opportunity to familiarise ourselves with our new living quarters.

The crew were split between four cabins, each with 3 bunks

and little room for manoeuvre! Our crew consisted of two RN

Officers, two RN University Cadets, and 10 RAF Personnel of

mixed rank. The majority of berths on the exercise are reserved

for those with little or no experience of the sea or sailing.

“After a good night sleep we set sail for Grenada. The initial

hours were occupied with ‘skills and drills’ learning to tack, jibe

and actions on a man overboard. As the watches started the

4 hr on 4 hr off shift pattern, our hopes of not needing foul

weather kit quickly flew out the window as the famed Trade

Winds were living up to their reputation and the rain started

to hammer down on deck. As the first night sail for many of

the crew the challenge of raising a 300lb sail at 4am in total

darkness, a rough sea, little sleep as its 90F below deck with

98% humidity on a 45 tonne boat ensured everyone learned

quickly!”

On Christmas Eve the team set sail for Union Island and

moored at the capital, Clifton. Waking up on Christmas day,

40

Tactical Medical Wing

(TWW) Carribean Adventure

everyone was issued with a Santa hat and fancy dress started

appearing on deck. After a gentle sail toTobago Cays, an

uninhabited group of tropical islands - real Robinson Crusoe

territory - a lobster BBQ Christmas meal was held on one of

the beaches.

The following days saw the Endeavour visit St Vincent

and the Grenadines, Wallilabou bay (the set of the Pirates of

the Caribbean), and Martinique - a little bit of France in the

Caribbean.

“After an overnight stay in Martinique, a re-stock at the

local supermarket and an opportunity for a shower we set sail

back towards St Lucia in preparation for the New Year and our

departure home. The afternoon was dedicated to maintenance

of the yacht: the winches were serviced and the decks scrubbed.

We sailed that evening, with fishing rods out, under a stunning

sun set and a night sailing under the most amazing starlit sky.

By New Years Eve we had returned to Marigot bay ready to

do final maintenance and organising the yacht and our kit ready

to hand over to the new crew. By the time we were finished,

a New Years crew meal and copious amounts of Rumbo (the

restaurants famous rum punch) was in order!

“This expedition was truly incredible. It gave the crew

the experience of living and working in close proximity in a

multi-service environment, sometimes in uncomfortable and

challenging conditions. We all learnt to be more tolerant and

considerate whilst experiencing a real sense of adventure,

responsibility and team spirits. JSASTC Gosport offer AT sailing

all over the world and details can be found on their website –

get ready and start applying!”


Little Foxes

Childcare &

Education.

for children and their parents

Little Foxes is an independent nursery, offering high quality care and

education for babies and children 0-5 years with an Out of School

Club for children aged 5-11 years.

Baby/Toddler & Parent Group every Friday morning.

We are a caring family run nursery offering a safe, secure,

stimulating environment for all babies and children.

Qualified and experienced Teaching Staff and Nursery

Nurses with High staff to child ratio.

Hydro Therapy Pool, Multi-Sensory room, School hall

with gym apparatus and extra curricular activites.

Mini Bus for trips out and about.

Nutritious 3 course breakfast, lunch and tea. Team of 3 chefs.

Competitive fees.

Government Grant funded sessions 3-5 year olds.

Open for 51 weeks each year. Full, part and term time

sessions available (am, pm, school day, all day)

Monday - Friday 8am - 6pm

Twilight from 7:30 am untill 6:30 pm

LITTLE FOXES CHILDCARE & EDUCATION

FOR CHILDREN AND THEIR PARENTS

Established 1986

The Common, Brinkworth, Wiltshire, SN15 5DX

Telephone (01666) 510 356

www.littlefoxesnursery.com

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 41


The Team

No doubt most of you would have heard of, or at least, visited the RAF Brize

Norton Rugby Club for one reason or another, but are you aware that there is

an active Station Rugby Team as well? Every Wednesday the team will have

a game. Whether home or away, our aim this year is to win the RAF Cup

Competition, amongst others.. Although it can sometimes be difficult to get

players away from busy primary roles to play, we have successfully won the RAF

Binbrook Bomb Competition (this is an annual RAF wide 7s competition held

at RAF Halton) and the Newbury 10s (again an annual competition open to the

whole RAF). We intend to do the same again this year and we are hopeful that

we can get a ladies team representing RAF Brize Norton up and running as well.

So, are you interested in playing a team sport that not only improves your

fitness but makes you feel welcome whether you are beginner or more

experienced? Do you enjoy time spent getting to know other people, not only

on the unit but across the RAF. Do you want the opportunity to improve as a

person and enhance your leadership qualities? Then why not join the RAF Brize

Norton “Buccaneers” Rugby Team? Training takes place on Monday evenings

from 1700 for both men and women on the pitch at the back of the Gym.

Names of some principle contacts are:

42

42

RAF Brize Norton

Buccaneers Rugby Update

OIC WO Alfie Balzano Ext 5283

Dep OIC Sgt Glyn Boughton Ext 6046

Coach FS Rob Robinson Ext 7732

Sec/Team Manager Sgt Guppy Goupillot Ext 6486

RAF Brize Norton Buccaneers look forward to welcoming the finest Rugby talent

from RAF Lyneham over the next couple of years to build on the already strong

team and social aspects of the Club – so if you’re moving here, don’t be shy –

come and find us and give Rugby a TRY!

Sgt Glyn Boughton

Dep OIC “Buccaneers”

RAF Brize Norton RUFC

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Cpl Robinson can’t keep his eye off

the ball…


Kite For Heroes!

Sat at my desk in February 10, I

answered a call from my opposite

number, the Chairman of the

Army Kitesurfing Association. The

conversation went something

like this, ‘CJ, how do fancy doing

something mental for Help for

Heroes?’. ‘Sounds like a great idea,

what do you have in mind?’ I replied.

‘How about a kitesurf race across the

channel, but not from Calais to Dover,

from Alderney to Poole……’ the rest

is history!

A race across the channel of this

magnitude had never been attempted

before, previous attempts being limited

to the aforementioned Calais to Dover,

some 22 miles. The crossing we were to

undertake went a step further than this

and covered 70 nautical miles across

the busiest shipping lanes in the world,

and as we were to quickly discover, was

fraught with technical, meteorological

and physical difficulties.

The aim was to race from Alderney

to Poole harbour, in a relay race, 6

riders in each team and raise as much

cash for Help for Heroes as possible.

What was not planned was 1 of the

calmest summers for 2 decades, leaving

our challenge wanting in the main

meteorological element, wind. A further

technicality to take into account were the

tides. The currents around Alderney are

particularly challenging with tides moving

in excess of 20 knots at peak flow,

untenable for any kind of kitesurfing

activity. The conditions had to be exactly

right for this kind of event, which meant

high/low tide time to suit the race start,

perfect wind direction and speed ie 20

knots SW, the prevailing direction for the

South coast.

Team captains canvassed their

associations in search of experienced

kitesurfers capable of undertaking the

challenge and lists were drawn up and

training undertaken in the months

leading upto the proposed June window

for the event. Teams busily set about

collecting sponsorship for the event and

June came and went – no wind. Due

to Operation commitments etc, when I

finally got the call on 6 September the

entire team had changed, the race was

go go go, we were racing the following

Fri 10 September, leaving Poole the night

before..

The entire event was plagued with eqpt

failures, from kites malfunctioning to

rescue boats being stranded mid channel

in the middle of the night. The latter

resulted in the teams being subjected to

a 10 hr channel crossing, in 12m open

ribs, in the pitch black of night with a 10ft

swell. Restricted to 5 knots with a boat in

tow, the RAF and Army teams arrived in

Alderney at 0400hrs after leaving Poole

at 1800hrs the evening before, and just 7

hours before the race start. As previously

mentioned, conditions had to be perfect

to attempt the race, and when teams

finally massed ready to start, everything

could have been far better. The safety

boat Coxs had worked the few hours we

had off to repair the Army boat propeller.

The wind was the wrong direction but

manageable, but the swell was enormous

– upto 30ft mid channel. Team Captains

convened to discuss the attempt. The

only way back was on the same ribs we

were now very well familiar with, so the

decision was made to attempt the race,

with a plan to call it off, if conditions

deteriorated further. The race was on!

The race started bang on time at

1100hrs to exploit slack water and the

teams arrived in Poole at 1800hrs amid

cheers from the locals and were greeted

by the local press, but we had all suffered

a catalogue of nightmares. All teams

suffered problems with equipment, and

after one such event, I found myself the

wrong end of a propeller, mid channel,

with a knife, an inflatable safety boat,

in 30ft swell, cutting stray kite lines

away after a disastrous kite release

system failure. As if this wasn’t enough,

2 team members were suffering with

sea sickness, and on the final leg, the

RAF rescue boat suffered a catastrophic

hull failure resulting in an escorted

journey to the nearest port by the

RNLI. The conditions were treacherous

at best, hence the myriad of problems

encountered, these being but a few

of the many tails of woe from this

event. Thankfully, the experienced well

trained crews were able to cope with

all the rigours this once-in-a-lifetime

adventure threw at us. Notwithstanding

the plethora of issues, the most important

part of this tale is the teams raised over

£9000 for Help for Heroes which was

very well received.

If you would like to try Power Kiting,

on land or sea, or are already involved in

the Sport, take a look at the RAF Power

Kiting website at: www.raf.mod.uk/

rafpowerkiting

Flt Lt CJ Martin

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 43


The Team

Destination Unknown

The training we were about to undertake

was a unique opportunity for us to practice

our survival skills before deploying on Op

HERRICK. We were given a scenario and

some authentication information, had

a quick glance over an EPA and then

received an ops vest, imitation weapons

and one day sack for the entire group.

The final additions to the scenario came

in the form of 2 RAF personnel attached

to our crew. They were playing the role

of passengers on our sortie and would

be coming on the run with us. Our brief,

from start to finish, lasted all of about 8

minutes. My mind was racing trying to

remember all that it had been exposed to

in the last few moments. A quick Q&A

session between each other confirmed

everyone was happy before making

our way over to the aircraft, destination

unknown.

It had been a long day and now

this little adventure ahead of us had

all the watermarks of an even longer

one. I looked across to a fellow Crew

Commander who was on headset and

gave him the tap of the watch, along with

the international landing signal with my

hand. “About 10 minutes” he replied.

Continuing to scan the cabin, I observed

the rest of my crew deep within their

own thoughts. I was quickly brought

44

Ex Crown Pinnacle

With the constant whine and drone of the aircraft, I sat deep in

thought and anticipation of what was about to come. It had seemed

like only moments earlier we had all been given a short brief from

the Flight Sgt Bernie Winters, one of the SERE personnel on the

exercise, on what we were about to be faced with.

back to reality by the familiar sound of

the aircraft slowing down, along with the

undercarriage unfolding beneath us. We

would soon be landing. Signalling this,

my crew and myself were eager to get on

with the task in hand. It was at this point

I rechecked my pouches and equipment,

reached for my weapon and braced for

landing. As the aircraft taxied along the

strip, we prepared to disembark in our

order of march. I had set the task of

lead scout to Pte Nathan Baylis, bringing

up the rear was LCpl Lewis Allen. I was

second in the stick, followed by Cpl

Andy Williams who had been assigned

our 2 RAF passengers. With the aircraft

slowing to a halt, the loadmaster had

already begun opening the back end.

The smell of the cold, crisp air greeted

us as we waited for the signal to offload.

Out in the distance, I could see very few

buildings, of which only one or two were

illuminated. It was a clear night with an

almost full moon. The signal came “GO,

GO, GO”.

One by one, each man thumped to the

ground, peeled right, fought off the huge

blast from the turning props and ran fast

and hard in search of cover. I signalled to

push further as we manoeuvred through

and around the small bushes and shrub.

Satisfied with the distance from the

aircraft, I shouted. “DOWN!” Quick to

take in our arcs, we were down on our

belt buckles. Head count and casualty

state done, I could now breath.

Off in the distance, I could hear the

aircraft as it barrelled down the strip,

preparing to get airborne once again.

Confirming the guys had good visibility

of their arcs, I began transmitting over

the radio, hoping to communicate with

any friendly forces. “Footrace, footrace,

footrace, any call sign, this is Runner 1,

acknowledge.” Listening and waiting

with anticipation, it seemed nothing was

being heard. As I glanced over to Cpl

Williams, who had also begun carrying

out the drill, I hoped he had received

a better response. A shake of his head

confirmed nothing either. Putting aside

any doubt I had, I continued transmitting;

after several attempts, the radio sprung

into life. Over the crackling net came the

faint voice of a friendly American. Having

authenticated each other, we gave our

location, which Cpl Williams had been

quick to establish. I was now content.

Bagged and Tagged

However, my highs were quickly

dampened when one of the guys was

eager to inform me we had movement

in the form of vehicles closing in on our

position. I watched as a small convoy

of 3 vehicles stopped about 200 meters

short of where we were hiding. My

heart began to race as the adrenaline

kicked in. Friend or foe, who were they?

Had they seen us and were we about to

be bagged and tagged? My mind was

racing as I quickly informed our American

call sign we had possible enemy activity

and needed a show of force ASAP. With

the bright moonlight, I could make

out a white SUV type of vehicle, along

with 2 other dark ones. The number

of personnel and any possible weapons

I was unsure of. Keen for the cavalry

to arrive, I requested a time on target

from our top cover; “Alpha 30 seconds,

bravo 60 seconds” came the response.

Informing the rest of the guys, I continued

to observe the potential enemy. Seconds

later came the almighty roar as the first

F18 Hornet thundered a few hundred feet

over our heads, closely followed by his

wingman. Our suspected militants were

saddled up and gone in seconds.

I continued to relay the relevant

information over the radio for a possible

pickup. The airwaves were bustling with


the many different call signs that had

now been assigned for our rescue. In

between the chatter, I could only imagine

this exercise was for real and that we

could be lying in some dark corner of

the Afghan desert. I was quickly brought

back to reality once again when LCpl

Allen ordered the words “Stand to, more

vehicles heading this way.” “Not again”

I thought. It seemed the vehicles, which

had previously been scared off, were now

back to stay. I observed white muzzle

flash from their location, our potential

enemy were now confirmed as definite

enemy. I required Emergency Close Air

Support immediately. “Break, break, any

call sign this is Runner 1, we have enemy

activity 200 metres north of our location.

We need ECAS now, over.” A voice came

over the net “Roger that Runner 1,

standby.” “Standby? Is this some kind of

a joke?” I thought. I would later come

to realise that the delay in force was due

to our pilots being heavily engaged in

a dogfight thousands of feet above us.

Not happy with the delay, I once

again asked for a time on target. This

time, the response was exactly what

I had been waiting for, “Runner 1,

be advised, weapons on deck in 30

seconds, keep your heads low.” Above

us, the skies were being ripped apart

as we felt the presence of F-18’s. The

running commentary between the pilots

confirmed a man pad was in the process

of being set up by a number of armed

men. “SIM SPLASH, target 1 down.”

Within a few minutes all targets had been

neutralised and were no longer a threat.

Mission complete.

The F-18s maintained top cover as two

rotary winged aircraft began finalising

a plan to extract us. Circling once, the

rotary call signs asked me to confirm wind

speed and direction. On their second

pass they told me to light up our infrared

strobe and stated landing was imminent.

I could feel the power of the helicopter as

its blades cut through the air. It landed

about 70 metres off to my right. We

raced to the awaiting helicopter. Head

count done and lap belts on, we were

airborne and on our way home. I sat

back taking in the scenery of the moonlit

pinnacles and the sweet smell of Trona.

A Cobra Gunship escorted us on our

short journey back to China Lake. The

experience and training we gained in this

short exercise was by far the best I have

ever undergone and I would like to thank

each and everyone involved in making the

exercise so realistic.

Cpl Hughes 381 Tp 47 AD Sqn

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 45


The Team

Following a busy and

successful 2010, 30

Sqn were keen to finish

the year with a bang, a

feat achieved by way of an

excellent, if debaucherous

Christmas dinner. Thanks to

some very understanding

staff, and a seemingly limitless

supply of sprouts, the function

room at the Cross Keys in

Wootton Bassett was soon

turned in to a fairly credible

re-enactment of the Battle of

the Somme. More than a few

beers and a quick clean-up

later, the Sqn retreated to the

safety of the Sqn bar, to make

preparations for an assault on

47 Sqn’s Guinness and Mince

Pies event. Leading the charge

across no-man’s land (albeit in

an MT coach), 30 Sqn suffered

heavy casualties (entirely due

to over-indulgence) with the

coach needing to make no

less than two stops during

the long 2-minute journey

into enemy territory. From

that point on, this war

correspondent’s memory is a

little hazy, but from what I’m

told a good night was had by

all. Many thanks to Sgt Den

Kelly for organising a top

event and a fantastic way to

see out the year!

In other news, the Sqn has

once again pulled out all the

stops on the Charity front

this year. The total amount of

money raised for RAFA over

the last 12 months is £28,500.

This year’s efforts follow in a

30 Sqn

46 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

fine tradition of raising money

for RAFA, the Sqn’s official

nominated charity, with this

years total contributing to the

quarter of a million pounds

that has been raised over the

past 15 years. Congratulations

to the RAFA team headed by

MACR Hart for yet another

fantastic effort in 2010!


Further congratulations

must also go to Sgt Andrea

Harrison for winning the

George Holderness Memorial

Prize from 55(R) Sqn for the

best student of the year!

As most of you will be

aware, 2011 has brought

some significant changes to

the make-up of the Sqns with

the new 30 Sqn emerging as

the Strategic and Intra Theatre

Air Transport Sqn for the

C130J. We have welcomed

many new aircrew from XXIV

Sqn, and a new boss Wg Cdr

Pete ‘Cockers’ Cochrane.

Wg Cdr Cochrane was in

post as OC XXIV Sqn for 2.5

months but has now taken

charge of 30 Sqn after the Wg

restructuring. He has a lot of

experience working on 30 Sqn

having previously served as a

co-pilot, captain and Flt Cdr!

Departing 30 Sqn are the

tactical qualified aircrew who

move to 47 Sqn and the J

Wing Tactical Training Flight

(JTTF) who move to XXIV Sqn.

There are too many people

to mention individually, but

we wish all of you the best

on your new Sqns and look

forward to working with

you in the future. Also

leaving is the outgoing OC

30, Wg Cdr Mike Wilson.

Having been boss of the Sqn

since August 2008, Wg Cdr

Wilson has presided over

an extremely busy time for

the Sqn. Despite the heavy

operational commitments and

the lead-up to Future Brize, he

has managed to maintain the

difficult balance of Sqn output

and morale, and we wish him

well in the future.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

With the move to Brize

Norton looming on the

horizon, preparations here

at 30 Sqn are going well.

With the dust from the reorganisation

now settling,

we look forward to getting

moved into our new place

of work, and specifically,

christening the new bar! The

annual Sqn beer-call (namely

Cider and Pasties) is planned

to take place shortly after

the move in July, with all Sqn

and Stn personnel welcome.

Further details will be posted

around the bazaars shortly.

In the meantime...

all the very best for 2011 from 30 Sqn!

47


The Team

Defence Movements School

Accreditation Matters

National Apprenticeship Week

National Apprenticeship Week is the week is a Government

sponsored scheme designed to raise the profile of apprenticeships

amongst employers, learners, parents, stakeholders and

the media. In 2011 it took place between the 7th and 11th

February 2011.

Directed by The Apprenticeship Management Team (AMT),

22 Training Group, TG18 Logistics (Mover) Accreditation

Centre and the other twelve RAF Training Schools were tasked

to support this event through a variety of activities. In order

to promote the movements trade a display was erected in the

Air Terminal for the week which gave information on civilllian

qualifications offered to the men and women entering the

movements world.

In recognition of all the efforts and hard work which all

apprentices within the RAF produce, a new annual award

scheme is currently being run by Air Movements Training. There

are three categories; Best Apprentice, Best Advanced Apprentice

and Personal Achievement. In the weeks leading up to the

awards the Defence Movements School Accreditation Team

have been seeking a candidate who stands out above the rest;

someone who has been self motivated and proactive during

their learning journey. SAC Stavrinides has been nominated

for the Best Apprentice of the Year. Currently employed as a

shift worker at the Air Movements Squadron, SAC Stavrinides

will be competing against other candidates from other trades

across the RAF.

Graduations

The TG18 Accreditation Centre team would like to congratulate

SACs Bramwell, Crawford, Fenton, and LACs Browne, Dean,

Doore, Edwards and Pawson, who have recently graduated

from their Basic Movements Training Course (BMT 41) on 9th

February 2011. All graduates have successfully completed their

Key Skills and Technical Certificate qualifications during Phase 2

48 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Trade Training. These individuals will now be employed on the

Air Movements Squadron, RAF Brize Norton, where they will

continue working towards the completion of their NVQ which

will later lead to each of them gaining an Apprenticeship in

Providing Aviation Operations on the Ground.

Apprenticeship Achievers since August 2010

Congratulations to the following people for completing

their Apprenticeship in Providing Aviation Operations on the

Ground; SACs Beswick, Lenehan, D Williams, Lee, Hopes,

Flood, Skidmore, Stockley, J Ward 592, Bamsey, Barr, Young,

Hopkinson, Roberts, Scrowston, Sievewright, Van der lee,

Down, J Ward 356, Coils, Knight, Hornsby, Stavrinides, Dunn,

Glover, Punyer, Reade, Markham, Fox, Leah, Lyons, Guest, C

Buckley, Cockayne, Chillington, Gordon, Harries, Heaton, King,

Flint, Huttley, Fuller, Convery, Cross, A Powell, Pichur, Best,

White, Langdon, Rowlatt, Milligan, Powell and Willis.

Cpl Thompson

TG18 Logistics (Movs)

DMS Accreditation Centre


You may have read last

month that 47 Sqn

won against 99 Sqn in

a bitterly cold winter Rugby

match before Christmas (pages

46-47 Feb G2). Well, 99 Sqn are

now after revenge, and have

thrown the gauntlet down to

47 Sqn for a re-match to be

played in April or May this year.

How long will it take 47 Sqn

to sign all their semi-pro players

through the Guardroom? How

many ringers will they field

from 24 and 30 Sqn? Will

47 Sqn be able to secure the

support of Will Carling and

Rory Underwood to ensure

they win? Will it be a case of

the 99 Sqn Pumas vs the 47

Sqn Cheaters again?! The plan

is to make the 99 Sqn vs 47

Sqn rugby matches a regular

event. Perhaps the other Sqns

and Formed Units would like to

challenge 99 Sqn or 47 Sqn too.

Can 99 Sqn avenge their defeat

prior to a night in the Sqn’s

Madras bar? – We’ll find out

in April/May. In the meantime,

with the RAF Lyneham teams

being invited to join into the

combined CO’s Cup starting

this month, there’s plenty of

opportunity for everyone to

get involved in a spot of light

sporting competition…. Roll-on

the Dodge-Ball!

99 Sqn vs 47

Sqn Rugby

Revenge…?

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 49


50

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Ferndale School is very proud of its long association with the

nearby military bases at RAF Brize Norton and MDAS

Shrivenham and we are pleased to offer discounts to all

military families. This year we are making available a limited

number of Assisted Places for children whose parents are

serving in the Armed Forces.

Ferndale regularly welcomes new pupils whose parents are

posted or stationed in the local area and we are highly

experienced in ensuring a smooth and happy transition for

each child into their new class. With the transfer of many

families to RAF Brize Norton from RAF Lyneham, we can

offer families the peace of mind of a friendly, welcoming

environment for their children and experienced staff who

understand how to quickly settle a new child into their year

group and help them become part of Ferndale. The school

offers each child a mix of challenge and opportunity, balanced

with traditional teaching and values. Our small classes mean

that teachers can give individual attention to all children and

our pupils grow up to reach their full academic potential, as

well as being courteous and responsible young people.

Why not come along and have a look for yourselves? Call us

on 01367 240618 or email info@ferndaleschool.co.uk or

visit our website www.ferndaleschool.co.uk to get a flavour

of what we can offer your child

A warm welcome for Forces families

at Wycliffe College

Wycliffe College, the thriving

day and boarding school in

Gloucestershire for 800 boys and

girls from 2 to 18 years, is a

popular choice for Forces

families.

Key attractions

Some parents choose the school

because it is within reach of

major motorways, rail networks

and airports. Others are

attracted because there are 300

boarders across the Prep and

Senior School for their children

to make friends with.

The pupils themselves enjoy the

full programme of evening and

weekend activities with

outstanding facilities on site - so

that there is never a dull

moment away from home.

Academic choice and success

In the Prep School, pupils benefit

from a broad and creative

curriculum with supportive

teachers. The full choice of

subjects continues as they

progress onto the senior School

at 13 and pursue a wide variety

of GCSE and A level options and

gain excellent results.

Outstanding sports

With superb facilities and

specialist coaches, sport is

another area of excellence at

Wycliffe. Sports including

cricket, football, hockey, netball,

rugby and squash are played at

the highest level locally,

nationally and even

internationally.

Welcoming atmosphere

Mr Cawthorne, a Wycliffe parent

in the Forces says: “We looked

for a school with a welcoming

atmosphere combined with a

strong academic record. It also

had to be good at all the

extra-curricular activities such as

sport, music, art and drama.”

He concludes: “If your

circumstances mean that

boarding is a necessity, then take

a look at Wycliffe. I know our

children are thoroughly enjoying

every minute.”


Many might traditionally see a preparatory school education as a simple

preparation for the senior school that lies ahead – but St Margaret’s is not

just a stepping stone to another school, more a place where children can

start to prepare for what lies ahead in life.

At St Margaret’s, our curriculum compromises an extensive range of

activities, designed to promote not only learning, but also personal

growth and development. It is based upon the subjects of the National

Curriculum which are delivered, in the main, by class teachers; all

of whom are experts in the relevant ages. This is then enhanced, not

only by specialist tuition in Sport, Music, Latin, ICT and Modern Foreign

Languages, but also the extensive extra-curricular programme, designed

to enrich every child’s experience whilst at the school; this includes the

‘hidden curriculum’ – what the children learn from the way they are treated

and how they are expected to behave. We want our pupils to grow into

St Margaret’s - Preparation for Life

Karen Cordon -

Head of St Margaret’s Preparatory School, Calkne.

positive, responsible adults who can work and co-operate with others,

whilst at the same time developing their knowledge and skills in order to

achieve their true potential.

Sport plays an important part at St Margaret’s and the school is fortunate

to share a 25 acre site with St Mary’s, Calne. Consequently, the children

benefi t from a wide range of facilities not usually available to preparatory

school pupils. All children are encouraged to improve their physical coordination

and to compete with confi dence on the games fi eld.

We are extremely proud of our pupils’ academic achievements. The

children are thoroughly prepared for entrance examinations to senior

schools and St Margaret’s has an impressive record of success in

academic and specialist subject scholarships, as well as consistently

gaining entry to fi rst choice schools.

St Margaret’s Preparatory School, Calne is an independent day school for boys and girls aged 3-11. The school is holding an

Open Morning at 9.30am on Thursday 17th March 2011– please call the school to register. To fi nd out more please visit the

website at www.stmargaretsprep.org.uk or call 01249 857220.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 51


The Team

Major Hawker Memorial

Lanoe George Hawker was one of the Royal Flying Corp’s most outstanding

personalities, both as a brilliant reconnaissance and combat pilot and as

an inspiring squadron commander. Born in 1890 the son of a naval officer

he was commissioned into the Royal Engineers in 1911 but he developed

a passionate interest in the new field of aviation. He gained his Airman’s

Certificate at Hendon in 1913 and made repeated attempts to join the Royal

Flying Corps, eventually being accepted and arriving at Upavon to commence

his military flying training on 1 August 1914.

Three days later Britain declared war on

Germany. Hawker was amongst the

first pilots sent to reinforce the British

Expeditionary Force in October 1914,

flying a Henry Farman with No 6 Squadron.

Keen interest and aggressiveness brought

him into immediate prominence and he

was among the first pilots to experiment

with bombing and at a time when the

opposing air forces often avoided combat

his policy of uncompromising attack

inspired other pilots to do the same.

He always carried a rifle with him in the

cockpit with which he would attempt to

drive away the German aeroplanes that

flew over the British lines.

After his aircraft was destroyed in a

gale he put his engineering background

to good use by designing an aircraft

shed that eventually became standard

issue for the RFC. In April 1915 he

was awarded the Distinguished Service

Order for a solo low level bombing

raid on the Zeppelin shed at Gontrode

near Gent. Although the shed was

empty at the time it resulted in the

Germans withdrawing their Zeppelins

to safer bases in Germany. During the

Second Battle of Ypres Hawker earned

a reputation as a skilled reconnaissance

pilot, bringing back accurate maps of the

disposition of troops of both sides which

were vital during the confused fighting

and rapid movements of the

front during the fighting.

By flying low enough he

could tell the two sides

apart by the colour of their

uniforms and the fact that

the Germans would shoot

at him. Although by flying

low he was able to bring back accurate

intelligence it was a high risk strategy and

Hawker received a bullet wound to the

leg. Despite his injury he continued flying

for a week, being carried to and from

his aircraft by his batman, until he could

be replaced. For his actions during the

battle he was Mentioned in Despatches.

He was given seven days leave which

was increased to three weeks when his

wound was judged to be much more

serious than at first thought.

On his return to his squadron Hawker

was allocated a new single seat aircraft,

the Bristol Scout. He wasted no time

in fitting it with a Lewis machine gun

using a mounting of his own design.

It was fixed to the side of the fuselage

and set at a forty-five degree angle in

order to avoid the propeller disc. This

made it very difficult to aim whilst

flying and he effectively had to hold a

formation position to shoot at an enemy

aircraft. Despite the difficulties Hawker

XXIV Sqn

successfully shot down three German

aircraft in one patrol, for which he was

awarded the first Victoria Cross for aerial

combat. After a year on the frontline

he was posted back to Britain having

become the first RFC ‘ace’ having shot

down seven German aircraft.

He was given command of the newly

formed 24 Squadron in November 1915,

based at Hounslow Heath just to the east

of present day Heathrow. The squadron

was the first in the RFC, indeed of any

air service, to be entirely equipped with

single seat fighters. The Germans had

achieved dominance of the air over the

Western Front with the Fokker Eindekker,

but they only allocated a few to each

squadron of reconnaissance aircraft. The

new tactic of the RFC was to overwhelm

the Fokkers with greater numbers.

The aircraft chosen to equip 24

Squadron was the Airco DH2, designed by

Geoffrey de Havilland. This was a pusher

type with the engine mounted behind

the pilot as

Artist's impression of the Memorial at Luisenhof Farm.


the British had not yet developed an

interrupter mechanism allowing the

machine gun to fire through the propeller.

The DH2 was agile but slow and it quickly

developed a poor reputation as it was

prone to spinning and the unreliable

engines often caught fire, which earned it

the nickname the ‘Spinning incinerator’.

The engines had been re-bored to

increase their power but this weakened

the cylinder walls and they would shed

pistons which cut through the tail booms

with often fatal consequences. Hawker

worked hard to restore confidence in the

new aircraft. The spin was a manoeuvre

that few pilots understood and many

believed that recovery from one was

impossible. Hawker worked through

the dynamics on the ground before

deliberately putting his aircraft into a

spin and recovering several times before

teaching his pilots how to do it.

Hawker was responsible for a number

of innovations including new types of

flying clothing, gunsights and mountings,

and a new magazine for the Lewis gun

which doubled its capacity.

When 24 Squadron moved to France

in February 1916 they quickly achieved

mastery of the air over the Somme

ending the Fokker ‘scourge’. Hawker’s

tactical instruction to his pilots was

simply ‘attack everything’. By November

1916 the Squadron’s score was seventy

German aircraft destroyed and Hawker’s

personal score was nine confirmed

victories. However the success of 24

Squadron led the Germans to set up their

own fighter squadrons, equipped with

new aircraft such as the Albatross D and

Halberstadt and by August 1916 the DH2

was outclassed.

Although RFC squadron commanders

were prohibited from flying on combat

patrols Hawker frequently ignored this

order. In particular when one of his

pilots was due to go on leave Hawker

liked to take their place on their last

patrol. On the afternoon of 23 November

1916 he took part in a patrol of four

DH2s over the Somme. Two German

aircraft were spotted below which were

acting as decoys for a formation of five

Albatross DIIs high above. Ignoring the

danger Hawker attacked the decoys

and was himself attacked by one of

the Albatrosses flown by Manfred von

Richthofen, later to become known as

the ‘Red Baron’. The two pilots circled

around and around, twenty times to the

left and then thirty times to the right

according to Richthofen’s account. As

is the nature of a dogfight, the circling

combatants began to lose altitude as

each tried to gain the advantage over the

other. The playing field was almost evenly

matched as Hawker’s DH2 was capable of

turning tighter circles whilst Richthofen’s

Albatross DII was much faster. Hawker,

however, had the dual disadvantage

of being over the German lines with a

prevailing wind that would carry him

even further into enemy territory. Unable

to gain an advantage over his opponent,

Hawker broke away from the spiral and

attempted a series of evasive aerobatics.

Running out of both fuel and sky, Hawker

finally had to make what was perhaps

the only practical choice available to

him - a low level dash back towards

the Allied lines. Flying in a straight line

now only a few feet above the treetops,

Richthofen, in the faster machine, now

had the advantage. Hawker jinked his

machine up and down and side to side

in order to present a difficult target for

Richthofen. Fifty yards from the lines and

safety a bullet from Richthofen’s guns

struck Hawker in the head, killing him

instantly. His plane crashed 200 yards

to the east of Luisenhof Farm, south of

Bapaume on the Flers Road.

The Germans buried Hawker next to

the remains of his aircraft, just behind

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their front line trench. He was just

twenty-five years old. Richthofen took

the Lewis gun from the wreck and put

it in pride-of-place above the door in

his quarters amongst the other trophies

of his victories. He always claimed that

Hawker, his eleventh kill, was the greatest

of all his victories.

After the war the Commonwealth War

Graves Commission was unable to find

any trace of Hawker’s grave, as the area

had been much disturbed by shellfire.

His name is on the Air Services Memorial

in Arras.

In 2009 a party from the C130J

Conversion and Training Flight, XXIV

Squadron, visited the Somme as part of

Exercise ‘Hawker Trail’. They retraced

the path taken by 24 Squadron, from its

formation at Hounslow Heath in West

London, via the RFC depot at St Omer to

their first airfield at Bertangles, north of

Amiens on the Somme. The group visited

Hawker’s crash site in the farmland south

of the village of Ligny Thilloy, leaving a

small cross beside the road. A number

of the group felt at the time that the site

deserved to be marked with a permanent

memorial, and XXIV Squadron has now

set up a fund to erect one. The memorial

will consist of a stone cairn with a plaque

in the style of the headstone which

Hawker would have had for his grave

had his remains been found. The Mayor

of Ligny Thilloy has donated the land for

the memorial, across the road from the

site of Luisenhof Farm overlooking the

valley where Hawker was buried.

The official unveiling is scheduled for

23 November 2011, the ninety-fifth

anniversary of Hawker’s death. No DH2

survived the war but it is planned to have

a replica aircraft perform a flypast during

the ceremony. This aircraft, constructed

in 1974 from the original plans and

painted as Hawker’s aircraft, is one of

only two replicas flying in the world, the

other being based in New Zealand. It

will fly from Wickenby in Lincolnshire via

Headcorn, across the English Channel to

St Omer, before completing its flight to

Albert-Picardie Airport which is only a

short distance from the Memorial site. It

is hoped to have the aircraft in France in

time for the Remembrance Day parade at

the Thiepval Monument at the invitation

of the Royal British Legion. No DH2 has

flown over the Western Front since 1918.

The Hawker Memorial Project is being

entirely funded by non public money.

A considerable proportion has already

been received through private donation

whilst the costs associated with operating

the DH2 will be met by commercial

sponsorship. XXIV Squadron is also

planning a charity auction in May to raise

the remainder of the money required.

53


The Team

A New Year and a new beginning for RAF

Lyneham’s senior Sqn; after 95 yrs on the

front line, XXIV Sqn becomes the Hercules

C130J OCU. With this we say farewell to the

old Boss, Wg Cdr Cochrane and welcome

Wg Cdr Tim Jones, our new CO.

Wg Cdr Cochrane moves approx 100m down

the corridor as OC 30 Sqn, taking half of XXIV

with him, while our Tac Crews move on to start

their time on 47 Sqn.

Farewell and good luck to all those leaving

the Sqn.

We must also welcome our new XO, Sqn

Ldr Daz Rawlins, OC B, Sqn Ldr Gareth Burdett

and his flight (formally 30 Sqn JTTF), OC TST,

Sqn Ldr Tim Gosling, Flt Lt Si Hickey & Sgt Stu

Lafferty from 47 Sqn and our new Sqn Adj, Sgt

Sunny Aven.

A few words from Wg Cdr Jones...

“I’m really proud to be commanding Lyneham’s

senior Squadron in what is going to be a key 18

months for the whole Herc Force. The recent re-organising of

our aircrew trg back under one Sqn gives us a great opportunity

to be more co-ordinated, more efficient and more accountable.

With a brand new OCU building at Brize as well as updated

and upgraded sims, the next few years for XXIV Sqn look very

good indeed. We’ve had the build up to Brize, now I think it’s

time for us to get on with it - it should be fun; it will certainly

be a challenge!”

Wg Cdr Tim Jones brings many years experience on the

Hercules with him, spending time as Co, Capt, and Flt Cdr

previously.

New Sqn structure...

The reorganisation of the Sqns at Lyneham means that all

flying training on the C130J will now be conducted by XXIV Sqn.

The new Sqn structure incorporates 30 Sqn J Tactical Training

Flight (JTTF) and the Flying Training elements of 47 Sqn

alongside 24 Sqn J Conversion Training Flight (JCTF).

These will now become 24 Sqn A and B flights with a third,

Training Support Flight offering administrative and training

management to the Sqn.

54

XXIV Sqn, a new era...

Euterpe

Brass Quintet

Book now for

your Ladies &

Guest Nights

Charles Gibbs

Band Master

Phone: 07976591102

euterpe.quintet@gmail.com

www.euterpebrassquintet.co.uk

Available for:

Corporate & Social

Events

Mess Functions

Private Parties

Weddings

Musical Genres:

Jazz Band

Trad (Ragtime) Band

German (Oompah) Band

Fanfares

Classical Quintet

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This new structure will allow the Hercules Force to better

manage its training bringing all training delivery under one

roof, with a dedicated support team driving for continual

improvement.

The Sqn will to move to BZN in July this year, making the

new J simulator building its home. However the next year will

bring a number of challenges with A flight and the Simulators

staying at LYN until they can be moved in 2012.

RNAS Culdrose Visit....

During Feb, Sqn Ldr Tim Gosling, Flt Lt Mark

Radbourne and Sgt Mark Davis spent a few

days at RNAS Culdrose visiting 824 Sqn,

Merlin OCU. 824 Sqn are well known to

have a very robust training support system,

and were more than happy to share how

they do things with their counterparts on 24

Sqn. The team found the visit extremely useful and

will be looking to incorporate some of the processes into the

new OCU training support structure. 24 Sqn TST look forward

to a continued relationship with 824 Sqn in the future.


Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Never thought about God before?

Thinking about Him now?

SASRA has helped generations of Service

Personnel and their families think about

the big questions.

On Deployment? Contact

deploymentsupport@sasra.org.uk

At Home? Contact SASRA HQ

admin@sasra.org.uk

Tel 01252 310033

SASRA, Havelock House, Barrack Road, ALDERSHOT. GU11 3NP

55


As part of XXIV Sqn’s engagement

strategy with industrial partners, two

visits were arranged with Flybe Airlines

based in Exeter. Flt Lt Gav Andersen was

asked to attend the Flybe Pre-Command

Groundschool in Dec 10. The aim of the

visit was to provide an insight in to how the

airline prepares its co-pilots for captaincy

and identify any lessons that could be

transferred to the RAF.

The second visit organised by Sqn Ldr Jon

Edmonson and Flt Lt Mark Radbourne

included personnel from both XXIV Sqn

and 30 Sqn. This visit provided a forum

for both organisations to learn from

each other on a range of issues. It also

provided an opportunity to enhance

Flybe’s understanding of Air Power and

demonstrate the role of RAF Lyneham’s

contribution to Operations.

56

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Flybe Pre-Command Groundschool

I was invited to attend the Flybe Pre-Command Ground

School (PCGS) at the Flybe Training Academy in Exeter

for 5 days in mid-December. The invitation requested

a pilot that was due to commence their captaincy tour

in the near future and as I was due to start my co-pilot

to captain conversion at the Hercules J Schoolhouse in

January of this year I was chosen. The course consisted

of 4 days of classroom work and office visits, and a 1-day

visit to the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) at Swanwick,

Southampton.

Two experienced Flybe training pilots initiated the PCGS

3 years ago. They had identified that their Captains were

not receiving specific training to prepare them for the

role. The course has evolved over the last few years and it

is now considered a pre-requisite to Captaincy. There are

4 to 6 pilots on each course. The invitation offered the

opportunity to view how a commercial airline trained their

potential captains with a view to bringing some of these

ideas back to Lyneham.

Flybe have invested heavily in a replacement training

academy at Exeter Airport that is due to open within the

next few months. The new academy will include hotel

accommodation and the simulators currently based at

Farnborough will be moved. This will enable them to deliver

all initial and continuation training for all pilots, cabin crew,

engineers and supervisors in one location. The Flybe Offices

are also located at Exeter Airport.

The first day of the PCGS began with background

presentations on the legal aspects of command where the

powers and obligations of captaincy were outlined and an

emphasis was placed on the history of the International

Aviation bodies and treaties. Throughout the course there

were visiting speakers. On the first afternoon there was

a brief from the Chief Pilot where he outlined what he

expected of his captains. A brief on Security and Dangerous

Goods from trade experts wrapped up the day. There was

no escaping work each evening however and throughout

the week assignments were set on meteorology, aircraft

loading, communications logs and crew duty cycles.


Tuesday and Wednesday saw the start of what was the main

thrust of the PCGS with the majority of time spent on Command

Crew Resource Management (CRM). There were several role play

scenarios that were facilitated by the instructors and debated

through group discussion. The options in each scenario were

outlined and each aspect was debated from crew-in until crewout.

Scenario were linked to the company priorities of safety,

punctuality, passengers and profitability. They ranged from a

crew member being late for work causing delays to fire engines

being unavailable at destination airfields with aircraft fuel at

the minimum level. There were further scenarios involving

welfare issues.

As well as the main players in each scenario the instructors

took immense satisfaction in playing the roles of those in

positions that were also affected by the decisions taken. For

example whilst a temporary delay may solve the issues faced on

the aircraft, the ground dispatchers also have time targets to

make and so may exert their own pressure. The CRM sessions

were broken up with further presentations on Cabin Services,

Ground Services and Engineering.

The visit to NATS took place on Thursday after a lengthy

drive to Southampton. The morning consisted of briefs on the

History of Swanwick and Air Traffic Control outside Controlled

Airspace (ATCOCAS). The afternoon gave the opportunity to

spend time with the various Area and Military Controllers within

the UK Airspace. There were also brief visits to the ridiculously

busy London Terminal Control and the ever-ready Distress and

Diversion Cell. The day gave us an exposure to the issues faced

by controllers, an understanding of their working conditions and

an understanding of the opportunities for preferential routings

for military aircraft available from controllers.

The final day was spent in the Flybe main offices at the airport.

There was a tour of the main operations floor and department

briefs were given from managers on logistics and flight safety.

There was also a presentation on Flight Data Monitoring. The

day concluded with a couple more CRM scenarios and a critique

on the course.

The week was extremely valuable for me and I have already

benefitted from the issues that were debated within the first

few weeks of my conversion course. Hopefully with a bit of

luck we may be able to squeeze another pilot onto the PCGS

at some point in the near future.

Flt Lt Gav Anderson

Engaging with Industry; what can we learn...?

On 19 Jan, XXIV Sqn visited Flybe HQ, Exeter Airport, to engage

with an Industry Partner and explore what could be learnt from the

ways we operate.

The engagement day aimed to provide a learning environment in

which both XXIV Sqn and Flybe could share knowledge, experience

and best practice of core business for mutual benefit. The day

also aimed to elicit concepts for the future of military and industry

engagement.

The engagement day focused on discussion workgroups to

promote knowledge transfer and learning for both XXIV Sqn

and Flybe. This included presentations from both parties to give

background knowledge of the organisations before breaking

into workgroups. This format was loosely based on round table

discussions that are often used in industry to share new ideas.

The workgroups reflected business areas relevant to both parties

and approx 4 representatives per workgroup attended from both

XXIV Sqn and Flybe.

The workgroups were:

• Management

• Operations Support

• Flight Safety and Human Factors

Aircrew and Trg

The day was concluded with a brief from each workgroup

explaining the key learning points and areas of interest covered.

A great deal of information and ideas were discussed with some

key points emerging from each group.

The Management Group focused on managing change and

personnel before exploring concepts of Military and Industry cooperation.

The topic of SDSR, Future Brize and personnel changes is very

relevant to XXIV Sqn and the wider RAF at present. Here, Flybe

offered a great deal of advice from their experiences of change

through mergers and restructuring throughout their lifetime as an

airline. The acquisition of Logan Air and BA Connect were examples

of change management with positive and negative outcomes which

the XXIV Sqn management group found very useful.

Flybe were very keen to explore how we develop our personnel,

finding our efforts to broaden personnel through additional duties;

force development and the JODP programme useful concepts, noting

the benefits of recruiting and promoting from within.

As a broadening discussion, the management workshop looked

at conceptual future initiatives. Here, Flybe were keen to explore the

idea of Reservist Aircrew, working for Flybe gaining route experience,

yet being seconded to the RAF for periods of time.

The Operations Support Group discussed best practice for no notice

tasking and how to manage unserviceable aircraft. Many common

issues were uncovered, with both parties sharing experience and

ideas.

Unserviceable Aircraft was an area Flybe were very interested

in; Flybe currently launch a standby aircraft for every U/S aircraft

down route and wanted to explore using a Ground Engineer (GE)

as an alternative to save costs. This is something the Flybe team will

investigate further following discussions on employment of a GE

with XXIV Sqn.

Another area the group explored was Aircrew and Flight Ops

relations. Flybe have a huge disconnect between Aircrew and Ops

Staff. Crews do not interact or have real understanding of the

Ops field. Flybe explored the close working environment XXIV Sqn

employs and will investigate the value of Ops training and Ops visits

for aircrew.

The Flight Safety and CRM Training Group concentrated on how

to minimise human error.

With the role out of ASIMS and Human Factors still relatively new

to the RAF, Flybe shared their experiences and issues in flight safety

management and building a Just Culture. This is something Flybe

have been developing for many years.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

57


LYN SFSO highlighted many comparisons, finding their

advice in improving our own system useful.

The Aircrew group looked at managing crew composition,

ontinuation training and currencies?

There is a large amount of common ground in the

way Flybe and XXIV Sqn operate. They are both Turbo

Prop operators, working at a high tempo with quick

turnarounds. This enabled valuable discussion, sharing

procedures and issues which highlighted areas of potential

improvement and change.

Flybe use a flight systems monitor to record how each

pilot operates, they can pinpoint trends within the fleet

where pilots require common training and tailor their

trg system to reflect this. This posed questions on the

limitations of a static trg structure which is used by XXIV

Sqn, and how best to train for trends.

Flybe’s pre command course to new captains, was also

an area of interest for XXIV Sqn. Flybe have offered a place

to a new C130J Capt in 2011 and have already hosted

one in 2010 (Flt Lt Gav Anderson). The idea of delivering

specific ground training aimed at the command element

of new Capts is something the XXIV Sqn will explore further.

Overall feedback from all parties was very positive. The day

achieved its primary aim to promote discussion and learning

of each organisation and how they operate broadening our

outlook on improvement. Shared experiences and challenges

were explored with advice, new ideas and concepts shared.

58

Flybe Academy

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

There is now scope to deliver a second engagement day to

refine those subjects already explored and open new areas of

interest. To this end, Flybe will be hosted by XXIV Sqn in 2011

and will continue to build its relationship with Flybe.

Many thanks to Sqn Ldr Jon Edmondson and Flt Lt Mark

Radbourne for all your hard work in organising the event.


Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 59


The Team

Landing Gears & Ash Cloud Fears:

RAF Lyneham’s Ops Sqn Review of 2010

60

By Fg Off Thomas


As 2010 came to a close and all eyes looked

forward to 2011 and the impending move to Brize

Norton, I thought it wise to cast an eye back on

2010 and the events and achievements of Ops

Sqn at RAF Lyneham.

January - February 2010

These months saw sustained snow and sub zero

temperatures causing severe difficulties on the

airfield. 4-hourly meetings and hard work from

ASMT kept the airfield open whilst many civilian

airports were forced to close. British Airways even

contacted us to ask if they could use us for some

their disrupted traffic.

12 Jan 2010 was notable for the devastating earthquake

in Haiti, with RAF Lyneham providing aid through a C-130J.

The end of January also signalled the end of STARS and

the birth of BOCS.

March - April 2010

March was a decidedly ‘normal’ month with plenty of

route and local flying to keep Ops busy along with the

usual short notice Compassionate A flights requested by

ASCOT Ops. Everything was running smoothly.

That was until 14 April and the unpronounceable

‘Eyjafjallajokull’ volcano in Iceland erupted, causing

mayhem all over Europe with a Volcanic Ash Cloud

(VAC). On the morning of the eruption, different areas

of UK airspace were being closed periodically as we were

expecting a C-17 in for a repatriation ceremony that day.

Fortunately, we were able to bring the aircraft in early before

the VAC closed all UK airspace for a week.


May - June 2010

The VAC threatened to come back in early May, but

dissipated as quickly as it had reappeared. All eyes

looked forward to BRIZETAC 1; the Exercise to test

the C-130 operating out of Brize Norton. There were

teething problems, as was to be expected however

it passed without major incident until the last few

days. This incident was the wheels-up landing of a

C-130K at Brize Norton. Fortunately, nobody was

injured and Brize was able to reopen fairly quickly.

In the meantime, however, RAF Lyneham, acted as

a diversion for several Brize Norton bound aircraft.

July - August 2010

July and August heralded the many Families

days including the Ops Sqn Families day. It was

an extremely successful day which included air

experience helicopter flights and, most importantly, a bouncy

castle!

The Station Families also brought a thrilling display form only

flying Vulcan as it made one of it’s very last flights.

September - October 2010

This was a very busy period for Ops Sqn, especially with

‘extra curricular’ pursuits. Fg Off Jim Martin successfully led a

team through the gruelling Para 10’s challenge at Catterick.

The Para 10 is a multi-terrain endurance event following the

‘P’ Company cross country route, carrying a bergen weighing

35lb and wearing boots. The team, led by Fg Off Jim Martin,

acquitted themselves very well, all surpassing their expected

finishing times. To date they have raised over £900 for Help for

62 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton


Heroes. They would like to thank

everyone who donated for their

generous support.

Stn Ops ‘’The Lyneham

Lads’’ Para 10 Team

Flt Lt Jim Martin, MACR Jim

Stewart, CPL Phil Templeton,

SAC Kyle Beresford, Sqn Ldr

Andre Adamson.

In October Sqn Ldr Ray

Morley was in Delhi, India as a boxing referee for the

Commonwealth Games. He assures us that he avoided

the now infamous ‘Delhi Belly’!

November - December 2010

November’s main event for Ops Sqn came in the guise

of BRIZETAC 2. With the lessons identified from BRIZETAC

1 compiled and studied, it was time for round 2. From an

Ops Sqn DOC perspective it made life a lot quieter with

our workload being transferred to the Brize Norton DOC!

For the rest of the Sqn however, it meant daily trips to and

from Brize to advise and guide them through the process

of running a local flying programme.

Once BRIZETAC 2 was finished and the dust had settled,

snow quickly settled after it! The year was ending as it had

begun, this time however Ops Sqn was armed with the

lessons it learnt in January and ensured the airfield hardly

closed at all whilst Heathrow and Gatwick were at a stand

still. A fantastic achievement for the Sqn and the Stn.

2010 was a colourful year full of incidents and

achievement. RAF Lyneham Ops Sqn is now well into a

new year of challenges and awaits the eventual cessation

of flying operations at RAF Lyneham.

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

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Divorce, Family, Children Matters and Civil Partnership.

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Wills • LPA’s • Probate • Trusts

A 5% discount on this fi rm’s fees (excluding disbursements) will be

available on the sale or purchase of a property and on Wills.

63


64 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton


FERN FARM

Boarding Kennels

and Cattery

The Shoe,

Chippenham,

SN14 8SE

Tel: 01225 891466

Situated on Calne to Lyneham Road on the outskirts

of the village of Goatacre and set in 6 acres

Each heated kennel has its own run which vary in

size to suit all pets from Yorkshire Terriers

to Great Danes

A variety of food is available for both cats and dogs

to suit each individual s taste

Hypoallergenic foods available

Free complimentary bath and blow dry after 10

days boarding

Cats have their own heated cabin

and adjoining run

Special attention for 1st time boarders

Fully insured for your pets welfare

Friendly and experienced staff

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Quakers Lane,Goatacre, Calne

Tel: 01249 760289 Fax:01249 760128

www.cortonkennelsandcattery.co.uk

Email: info@cortonkennelsandcattery.co.uk

Howard’s Pet Care Ltd

6A Park Street, Hungerford, Berks, RG17 0EF Tel. 01488 - 685314

Premium Dog and Cat Foods including

Arden Grange

Burns Pet Nutrition

We also stock

Hills Science

James Wellbeloved

Symply

Royal Canin

- dog and cat treats, collars and leads, beds,

pet toys, and cat litter and accessories.

- a selection of wild bird and aviary bird foods and treats.

- hay, straw and shavings, as well as mixed

poultry corn, layers pellets and layers meal.

Special orders and standing

orders welcome.

White Horse

Veterinary Clinic

Jane Lyons BVetMed MRCVS

Chippenham Road SN15 4NX

LYNEHAM

Tel: 01249 890358

Consultations by appointment

Free Parking Professional caring staff

Surgical and dental facilities In practice laboratory

Full surgical x ray & dental facilities

CALNE SURGERY

15 Curzon Street, Calne SN11 0DB

01249 812715

see our website! www.whitehorsevet.co.uk

We offer a caring veterinary

service for your pets

24 hours EMERGENCY SERVICE

65


The Team

66

ENGINEERING

PLANS


To most of you a pizza is a 12 inch piece

of round dough, covered in a topping of

your choice and often enjoyed with a soft

drink, beer or wine. To the Engineering

Plans section located upstairs in the

Terminal building however the term

Pizza refers to a psychedelic sheet of A4

covered in hundreds of little coloured

squares. Instead of being enjoyed it is

frequently cursed and covered in coffee

stains. So what is the purpose of this

curious sheet of paper? Well it is a vital

tool used to plan what each of our aircraft

is planned to do for the next 6 months

or so.Eng Plans Flt, within Engineering

Operations and Plans Squadron (EOPS)

are responsible for allocating each of our

C-130K and J fleet to specific tasks on

a daily basis. So how does each aircraft

get allocated to these tasks? You might

be surprised to know that in reality our

fleet of C-130 J and K aircraft are not

controlled by the RAF at all, instead they

are tasked by the Defence Supply Chain

Operations and Movements (DSCOM)

organization who are based at DE&S

Abbey Wood in Bristol. RAF Lyneham

compile a list of available aircraft by type.

This is called “the Offer” and is sent to

DSCOM on a weekly basis and looks 3

months into the future. This is a vital and

difficult process because to be accurate it

relies on aircraft coming back from Depth

and Forward maintenance in a timely

manner. Unfortunately, due to a variety

of factors, this doesn’t happen very often

(!) and results in last minute changes

which DSCOM then have to manage.

DSCOM collate bids from PJHQ, Ops

and Exercise partners and others. This is

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coordinated by separate teams

looking at each month

up to 3 months

ahead which

results in the

weekly Aircraft

Allocation Committee

(AAC) document. This document details

all transport assets (C-17, Tristar, VC10

and C-130) and lists on a daily basis each

move by aircraft type and mark and takes

into account how many aircraft of each

type and mark have been offered on a

day by day basis. Eng Plans then look

at the AAC document and assess which

aircraft are available for each route.

Things to be considered are:

Hours required for the task

Hours available to next maintenance

Aircraft capability

Role / load requirements

Aircraft limitations

The aircraft’s next task (after the next one)

67


Once the decision is made on aircraft

allocation, the Pizza (A4 not the round

variety!) is annotated and 33 (Eng) Sqn

informed so that the aircraft may be

prepared for its tasking. The section is

planning to move to RAF Brize Norton

in July and the latest hot gen is that

we will be located in FHQ as part of an

integrated A4 planning cell for all aircraft

types. Change - we love it !!!! So in

theory that is the job done. In practice

it is much harder and requires lots of

juggling when aircraft are late coming

out of maintenance or become u/s whilst

away on a route. Pizza will never taste

the same again!

Duty Eng Ops Controller (DEOC)

Once the plan is put together, the

‘on-the-day’ management of the aircraft

tasked for the day is the responsibility

of the DEOC. Sitting in the Ops room

next to the Duty Ops Controller the

DEOC plays a pivotal role in all things

Engineering. On a normal shift, life is

easy with routine calls for refuels, toilet

trucks, cranes and ground power sets.

Additionally we allocate parking bays for

all of the aircraft at Lyneham. In the run

up to our move to Brize Norton in July,

we are keenly aware that integrating a

very busy and diverse local and tactical

flying programme, with multiple waves of

aircraft launches, into a setup that is not

used to this level of tactical operations

requiring rapid turn-round of aircraft -

often just 60 minutes between sorties

- will be a challenge! The normal shift

pattern is an 11 hour day and a 13 hour

night shift. The problem is that normal

shifts do not happen very often. Here is

a typical scenario: Its 0230 on a Saturday

morning and most sensible people in

the UK are fast asleep. The DEOC takes

a call from a GE who has a very sick

Albert stuck at an airbase in the USA.

The aircraft is on a high priority mission,

but now he needs a new propeller to fix

his dead aircraft and he wants it right

now! Initial details are passed over the

phone as to what parts and equipment

are required, 33 Eng are then tasked

with confirming the demand numbers

and checking that the GE has requested

everything that he will need to replace

the propeller. A faxed engineering

68 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

report then arrives confirming the GE’s

dilemma, these details are then compiled

into a down-route unserviceable aircraft

file. The Priority Progression Cell (PPC) is

then tasked with sourcing the requested

parts. A propeller is available from the

Propulsion Repair Flight and the seal

kit and oils are in forward supply. The

demands are placed and the DEOC tasks

Visiting Aircraft Section with moving

the propeller from PRF to Receipt and

Despatch (R&D). 33 Eng have been

putting together a package of tools and

lifting equipment that are required to

carry out the prop change and all of the

parts and equipment are being rallied at

R&D for packaging and labelling. R&D

raise a Form 1380 and fax it to DSCOM

for an available outlet to USA. Due to the

size of the propeller, civil airways cannot

handle it, so a RAF aircraft is the only

option. DSCOM liaise with Ascot Ops at

Brize Norton and an aircraft bound for

America has its route changed to ‘bend

it through’ with parts for the stricken

Albert. The flight turns out to be one

of our own Hercules, so the parts and

equipment pack-up are called forward

to the Air Cargo hangar. The Movers

then palletise and secure the pack-up for

flight. Due to the nature of the task, the

GE requires additional manpower in the

form of an NCO. The propeller fit will be

supervised by the NCO, allowing the GE

to raise and carry out the independent

checks that will be required. 33 Eng

provide the name of a suitable candidate

and the DEOC then passes these details

to DSCOM so that he can be manifested

to the flight. Throughout the rest of

the morning, 33 Eng are working the

outbound aircraft to ensure that it will

be serviceable to go, whilst Ops and the

DEOC are monitoring the situation with

the volcanic ash cloud, trying to establish

whether our outbound aircraft will even

be able to depart.

Since 0230 a multitude of telephone

calls have been made backwards and

forwards between the GE and the DEOC,

Ops, Ascot Ops and the captain of the

stricken C-130. Everyone needs to know

what aircraft the spares will be delivered

on, when it will be able to depart and

when it will arrive at the sick aircraft’s

location. How long will the repair take

and will the diplomatic clearances

allowing the aircraft remain valid? Its

now 0545, and the last 12 hours have

disappeared so quickly that there is only

60 mins left to get updates from Theatre,

prepare the morning brief and get ready

for handover to the next unsuspecting

occupant of this busy, exciting but

unpredictable post.

The DEOC personnel are also looking

forward to the move across to Brize

Norton where the challenge of operating

all 4 fleets under the control of 2 DEOCs

will be interesting and enjoyable!


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69


Community

Focus

Community Matters

Welcome to Community Matters. The Community Support

Team hope you find the information useful and welcome your

comments and suggestions for items.

Remember, if you would like to have something included

in the Global Gateway do contact me, Lin Kennedy, the

Community Development Officer (CDO). Please phone numbers

01993 897068 or 07786801107 or email: BZN-BSW-PMSCDO@

mod.uk

For advice and guidance or to assist with any housing welfare

issues that you may be encountering, contact WO Yvonne

Conway the Station Community Support Officer (SCSO) on:

01993 895350 or email: BZN-BSW-PMSSCSOWO@mod.uk

If you require information about anything at all, including

being posted in or out, schools, local services or any aspect of

living in the area, contact Mel at the HIVE on: 01993 895349

or email: BZN-BSW-PMS101@mod.uk A useful website to find

general information about your local area, no matter where,

is http://www.upmystreet.com/

For personal and family support contact Emmanuel

Walcott, SSAFA on: 01993 841497/897251.

Police

Burglary appeal

In the past weeks there have been incidents of doorstep crime

in Oxfordshire.

Police and Trading Standards have been notified that traders

calling themselves ‘TOTAL COAT’ are cold calling and working

in the area.

If they have been, or are working, in your area please notify

Trading Standards on 0845 051 0845, select option 2 and ask

to speak to the doorstep crime team.

Neighbourhood Action Group News

The Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) met to discuss the

major issues that were found following the recent public

engagement. Anti-social behaviour, along with groups of

youths hanging around and drinking in the street, were the

major priorities. Speeding was also raised as an issue around

the neighbourhood. As youth facilities was a priority last year

and with the Youth Service very uncertain about its future, it

was decided to look closely at ways that the Neighbourhood

Action Group could assist with keeping the current facilities or

finding new facilities for young people.

Anti social behaviour (ASB)

There is still a lull in calls about anti-social behaviour. It appears

that the CCTV is doing an excellent job of keeping Carterton

town centre relatively quiet. Shilton Park and the Country Park

have also been relatively quiet.

A street meeting was held in Dovetrees, Carterton following

complaints of anti-social behaviour. The turnout was good and

the major factor appears to be the alley way linking Dovetrees

with Burford Road being used as a short cut. In addition there

CARTERTON’S

CHARITY CAR

BOOT SALES

“The Friendly boot sales” - start again on

Saturday 26th March on the Old Market Site.

Then on the last Saturday of every month through to

October (30th April, 28th May, etc).

Sellers (£6 a pitch) are welcome from 7.00 am and

buyers from 8.00 am until 12 noon. All in aid

of local charities.

Enquiries to Maddy on 01993

772241 or Barry on 842 655.

Anyone with information should contact the police on 0845 8 505 505

70 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Thames Valley Police is urging residents

to report anything suspicious in their

street following a number of burglaries

across the district, including in the

Carterton area.

seems to be a problem with inconsiderately parked vehicles.

Other News

The team is meeting with our partners to discuss and identify

individuals that we believe are on the verge of offending. The

idea behind the meetings is to offer assistance to the individual

and family to avoid them getting into the criminal justice system.

Alcohol was seized from four underage people. The quantity

of alcohol seized was quite substantial and included numerous

bottles of WKD. The details of these youths have been passed

to the Anti Social Behaviour unit who will send out warning

letters and invite them and their parents to an alcohol education

workshop.

Following a spate of burglaries in the neighbourhood the

team has been circulating burglary awareness posters as well

as providing high visible foot patrols to disrupt any further

offences.

Residents in West Oxfordshire are advised that bogus emails

are currently in circulation purporting to be from HM Revenue

and Customs.

The email claims the recipient is entitled to a refund and is

asked to answer some security questions.

Please do not click on the link in the email. HM Revenue and

Customs do not send these types of emails out.

And finally, Special Sergeant Mobley will be joining the

neighbourhood team soon so we look forward to welcoming

him.

You can contact the neighbourhood team by telephoning

0845 8 505 505.


Exceptional Citizen Awards

The Town Council is inviting nominations

for the 2011 Exceptional Citizen Awards.

Eligibility: Any resident or former resident of Carterton is

eligible for consideration. There is no age limit nor is there any

limit on the number that may be awarded in a year but the

presumption is that this award will only be given to mark a very

high level of achievement/service

Criteria for the award is:

* One single exceptional act

* Sustained success at national or international level in sport

or the arts

* Active support for a local or national charity or voluntary

organisation over a period of many years

* Substantial contribution to public life in the town over a

period of many years

Carterton Town Mayor’s Award

For Young People

The award recognises and rewards a young person (under the

age of 19 and who lives in Carterton) who has demonstrated

exceptional volunteering, leadership, commitment or

determination.

The Mayor will present a prize to the winner in late April at

the end of the civic year.

Nominations may be made by Carterton Youth Council,

schools, youth organisations or individuals. The Mayor will make

the final decision as to who will receive the award but he will ask

the Youth Council to advise him on the applications received.

In considering nominations, the Mayor will be looking for

evidence of the following:

* Bravery - Overcoming personal barriers to achieve success,

making a stand against bullying, racism etc, or an act of bravery.

* Kindness in helping others - Supporting an elderly or

disabled neighbour or relative, fundraising, etc.

Carterton

10Km Run

The 2011 Carterton 10Km run will take place on Sunday

27 March at the Carterton Leisure Centre at 10.00 a.m.

Entry forms available from the Town Hall or by email to

tmarchant@carterton-tc.gov.uk. Tel 01993 842156 for

further details.

Marshals are urgently required

between 10.00 a.m. and 12.00

noon. Please let us know if

you can help.

Nomination forms are available from the Town Hall. Call in,

telephone 01993 842156, or email scatt@carterton-tc.gov.uk.

* Improving the community

- Commitment to improving

their school, community or local

environment.

* A voice for young people -

Contribution to promoting the views of children and young

people in decision-making.

* Creativity and innovation - Demonstrating fresh thinking

and new ideas in the arts, music, engineering or computing.

If you wish to submit a nomination please write to or email

the Town Clerk giving your name and contact details, your

nominee’s name, age and address, and a brief description of

why you think they should receive the award. All applications

will be treated as confidential.

Nominations should be submitted by 31 March 2011.

St George’s Day

Celebration

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

The Mayor of Carterton, Cllr Norman MacRae MBE, is

pleased to announce that he will be holding a St George’s

Day Celebration at The Vines Restaurant, Burford Road,

Black Bourton, on Saturday 16th April 2011.

The meal will be accompanied by music, with after dinner

speaker and jazz singer Marie-Jane (Pussy) Barnett.

Tickets £35 per person, available from the Town Hall.

Contact 01993 842156 or email scatt@carterton-tc.gov.

uk to reserve a place.

71


Community

Focus

72 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Padre’s Peace

A very wise person once said: “To truly understand

your enemy you must first walk a mile in his shoes.”

(a wit then commented that this was indeed a good

idea as you would then be a mile away from your

enemy and have his shoes!)

However it is not just our enemies who we should

try to understand better, to see things from their

perspective, but also our friends, family and work

colleagues.

It is in no doubt that one of the major causes of

upset in our world is narrow mindedness, the inability

to see life from another’s perspective; in short “it is

my way or the highway”.

If we are honest there is a bit of it in all of us.

Such intransigence leads to bitterness, conflict and

in the end lack of progress. However in this age of

the Global village when we find ourselves living and

working across many different cultures and belief

systems we all need to be able to see life from the

perspective of others.

Particularly for ourselves as the RAF begins to

act on the findings of the SDSR and more units are

integrated such as ours. Nobody is denying that there

is a lot of work involved in this task but the possible

rewards are boundless. For a start if we are willing

to look at life from another’s perspective we may be

surprised to find that ‘different’ doesn’t necessarily

mean ‘wrong’, just different! Secondly we may find

that by sharing our views and combining our ideas

something totally new is born out of it.

It doesn’t mean that we can’t have robust debate

or even difference of opinions but if each party feels

that they have been listened to and their opinions

honestly considered then the outcome is more likely

to be favourable and co-operation or integration

will follow.

As a Padre I would point to Jesus as the ultimate

example, when God wanted to bring a message to

our world he did so by walking in our shoes, living

as a man, born into a poor family in the Near East.

He grew, ate, slept, worked and sweated just like

the rest of us.

This did not bode well with the leaders of the day

who kept themselves very much apart from ‘ordinary’

people. In fact because he visited the homes of tax

collectors and sinners they accused him of being a

glutton and a drunkard.

Of course it was costly and he often fell foul of the

same authorities who misunderstood him. However

as a result of his life and death people of many

different backgrounds were brought together and

saw religious faith in a new light, this new way of

living continues to this day.

Rarely will the cost to us be so high, of course there

is a risk involved in getting ‘up close and personal’

but the rewards are far higher. There is a long way

to go in the next few months, let’s walk it together

not ‘my’ way or ‘your’ way but a new way.

Padre Colin O’Dell, Stn Chaplain, RAF Lyneham


Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

THE BROADSHIRES

OSTEOPATHIC PRACTICE

Lorna Dixon & Associates

01993 867134

The Broadshires Health Centre,

Broadshires Way, Carterton,Oxon OX18 1JA

Back & Neck Pain, Joint Pain,

Frozen Shoulder, Sports Injuries, Headaches,

Osteopathy For Children

REGISTERED WITH ALL PRIVATE HEALTH INSURERS

www.broadshiresbacks.co.uk

73


Community

Focus

“Walking hand in hand with Jesus”

Our letter from the Vatican

The children from Chestnut class, Y3/4, wrote to the Pope

concerning the Papal visit to the United Kingdom in September

last year. The children followed the route that the Pope took and

linked parts of the curriculum to it. They enjoyed researching

and following his visit so much that they each chose to write a

letter of thanks to the Pope. It was a really fantastic moment

for all the children and the staff to receive a letter of thanks

from the Vatican.

‘Dear Mrs McDonnell,

The Holy Father was pleased to receive the letters from the

children in Chestnut Class and he has asked me to convey his

thanks. He appreciates the sentiments that they expressed. He

will long treasure the memory of his visit to the United Kingdom

and the warmth of the welcome that he received.

His Holiness will pray for the children at Saint Joseph’s School.

Upon all of them, and upon their teachers, families and friends,

he invokes the abundant blessings of this holy season.’

This message will be long treasured by the children, families

and children of St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Carterton!

Archdiocese of Birmingham

Oxfordshire County Council

On 9th December 2010,

10 students from Carterton

Community College entered

the Parachute Engineering

Facility (PEF). The visit was

organised to assist the students

with the completion of their

BTEC Level 2 Engineering

Diploma. The information

provided by PEF was to include

information on subjects

such as; the importance of

maintenance in the RAF, H&S

in the workplace, COSHH and

Risk assessments.

The students were given

a H&S brief followed by a

tour of the hangar. Despite

the early start the students

seemed upbeat; however the

students were unaware that

a Power Point Presentation

was next on the agenda.

The main subjects covered

in the presentation were the

importance of maintenance,

the effects of poor

maintenance and statistics.

It was time to seek out those

who would like to join the Air

Force in the future, I asked the

question and the response

was very positive, however

I had a hidden agenda, the

first person to raise his hand

would be my next volunteer.

Liam was that unfortunate

person, he was about to be

dressed up as a RAF Falcon

Skydiver complete with

74 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Emma and Joseph, holding the letter and photograph of the Pope,

will be taking their First Holy Communion later this year.

Carterton Community College Year 10

BTEC Level 2 Engineering Diploma

jumpsuit, helmet, altimeter

and of course the Lightweight

Parachute System (LPS). Liam

demonstrated a few skydiving

skills much to the amusement

of his colleagues, he then

operated the LPS reserve

canopy pilotchute to reinforce

the importance of correct

maintenance procedures.

The students were asked

to carry out the cleaning and

lubrication of the BT80 Static

Line Cutaway cables. This task

is a vital stage of the parachute

maintenance. The students

had no problems adhering to

all H&S regulations. The next

practical task revealed the

competitive nature of the Year

10 students. I demonstrated

how to form a perfect rivet

on a parachute rigging line

link, not to be out done the

students (after laughing at

my attempt of a rivet) formed

their own rivets, much to my

dismay, but to the students’

delight they performed very

well.

With the morning drawing

to a close it was clear that

the visit was a success. The

morning was very enjoyable

and hopefully the information

provided by PEF assisted

the Year 10 students in the

completion their BTEC Level

2 Engineering Diplomas.

Cpl Steve Southward.


Primary School Engineers

in Action in Carterton

What makes engineering exciting? Well,

150 year 5 pupils (aged 9-10) from all

five Carterton Primary Schools discovered

some answers to that question when they

visited Carterton Community College on

5th & 6th January 2011.

The event was sponsored by AirTanker

and was run by staff from the Community

College and from “INTECH – Science

Centre Planetarium” which is a fantastic

centre for science, technology and

engineering based near Winchester in

Hampshire.

The pupils had a great time in three

top quality workshops which they all

experienced – CAD CAM (Computer

Aided Design and Manufacture), Data

Logging and the INTECH Flyer Challenge.

The INTECH Flyer Challenge involved

designing and making a paper plane

which was launched from a special

machine. This was great fun and as a

follow up a “challenge” was presented

to each Primary School by AirTanker.

Each School has been challenged to

build a simple balsa wood ‘plane which

can be launched in the same way as the

paper versions. The aim is to launch these

at the official opening of the new hanger

which will house the AirTanker aircraft

at RAF Brize Norton. This will take place

on 31 March 2011. Good luck to all our

primary engineers; we will see which of

their aircraft can compete with the real

thing on the day!

Graham Speke

Mary Bilton

Carterton Community College

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75


Community

Focus

Neighbourhood Watch Update

As a member of the Neighbourhood

Watch (Abingdon road) I have been asked

to write an article about keeping you and

your family safe, most things are common

sense but make a real difference.

Here are a few reminders reproduced

from the “be safe be secure” handbook

issued by the home office, this booklet

is now out of print due to budget cuts

but is available online should you wish to

view it in its entirety.

Home security is the best way to reduce

your chances of being burgled. A lot of

burglaries are spur of the moment, as a

burglar may see an open window or other

easy point of entry and take their chance.

Tips to avoid becoming a victim:

• When you go out, always close and lock

the external doors and windows – even

if you are just going out for a short time.

If you have deadlocks, use them. They

make it harder for a thief to get out again.

But don’t leave the key near the door or

in an obvious place.

• Don’t leave spare keys outside or in a

garage or shed.

• Under the law, you are entitled to use

reasonable force to protect yourself, to

protect another person or to protect

your property,

• The force that it is reasonable to use

in any situation will depend on the

circumstances of the case and the threat

you are facing. Broadly, for force to be

reasonable it must be necessary and

proportionate. A claim of self-defence

is allowed if a householder has done no

more than he or she instinctively believes

is necessary to protect him or herself from

attack (or similarly to protect others or

property); and the law recognises that in

the heat of the moment it may be hard

for you to assess the level of danger you

face and the amount of force necessary

to ensure your safety or the safety of

others.

Dealing with abusive phone calls

If you get an abusive or threatening

phone call, do not respond to it. The caller

wants a strong reaction from you. You

may want to make a record of when you

receive the calls, so you can see if there is

a pattern. Some phone companies offer

a service that blocks calls from people

who have withheld their number, and a

service allowing you to retrieve the last

caller’s number.

Do not give your name or number

when you answer the phone. If you are

receiving a high number of abusive calls,

contact your phone company or the

police for help.

Bogus callers

Most people who call at your home will

be genuine, but sometimes someone may

turn up unannounced, with the intention

of tricking their way into your home. If

someone calls on you:

LOCK – Keep your front and back doors

locked, even when you are at home.

STOP – Before you answer, stop and

think if you are expecting anyone. Check

that you have locked the back door and

taken the key out. Look through a spy

hole or window to see who it is.

CHAIN – If you decide to open the door,

put the chain or door bar on first, if

you have one. Keep the bar or chain on

while you are talking to the person on

the doorstep.

CHECK – Even if they have a prearranged

appointment, check their

identity card carefully. Close the door

while you do this. If you are still unsure,

look up a phone number in the phone

book and ring to verify their identity. Do

not use a phone number on the identity

card, as this could be a fake!

Car Crime

A lot of crime is against cars, motorbikes

and bicycles, including the theft of

vehicles and theft from vehicles. Most

of it can be prevented with a few simple

steps:

• Lock the doors and close the windows

and sun roof when you leave the car – for

any length of time.

• Don’t leave anything on display – even

a jacket can seem like an appealing target

for a thief.

• Remove the stereo if you can.

• Remove satellite navigation devices

where possible, including the support

cradle and suction pad. Remember to

wipe away any suction pad marks left on

the windscreen or dashboard.

• Tuck in wing mirrors and put the aerial

down to discourage vandals.

• Never store your car’s documents in

the car.

Anti-Social Behaviour

Anti-social behaviour is any activity that

impacts on other people in a negative

way; it includes a variety of behaviour

covering a whole complex of selfish and

unacceptable activity that can blight the

quality of community life.

Examples include:

• Nuisance neighbours;

• Intimidating groups taking over public

spaces;

• Vandalism, graffiti and fly-posting;

•People taking and buying drugs on the

street;

76 Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

• People dumping rubbish and

abandoning cars; and

• Anti-social drinking.

Sometimes, anti-social behaviour

may be targeted at specific individuals

or households; however, anti-social

behaviour can also be a result of

more general circumstances, such as

an atmosphere of intimidation, or

thoughtlessness, for example noise

nuisance caused by late night fireworks.

Either way, it shouldn’t be tolerated.

Personal safety

The chances of you or a member of your

family becoming a victim of violent crime

are low. Violent crimes by strangers in

public places are still rare and account for

a very small part of recorded crime. You

will be safest in bright, well-lit and busy

areas. Try to look and act confident –look

like you know where you are going and

walk tall. You might like to spread your

valuables around your body. For example,

keep your phone in your bag, your house

keys in your trouser pocket and your

money in your jacket.

If someone tries to take something from

you, it may be better to let them take it

rather than to get into a confrontation

and risk injury. You can use reasonable

force in self-defence. You are allowed to

protect yourself with something you are

carrying (for example keys or a personal

alarm) but you may not carry a weapon.

If you decide to defend yourself,

be aware that your attacker might be

stronger than you or may take what

you are using in self-defence and use

it against you. It is often better to

shout loudly and run away. If you use

a wheelchair, keep your things beside

you rather than at the back of the chair.

Try not to advertise your valuables such

as mobile phone, laptop, MP3 player,

jewellery or watches.

When out walking, be careful not to

make your MP3 player or personal stereo

an easy target for thieves. Try to keep it

hidden.

Mrs. Leanne Pollard

Area 9 Coordinator


This year sees the launch

of the RAF Factor a Service

wide singing competition

and all day music festival, the

final of which is due to be

held at RAF Cranwell on 3

Sep 11. The build up to this

event will start in April with

a series of regional heats in

the UK and one in Cyprus.

The singers selected from

these heats will then attend

a ‘boot-camp’ where the

successful finalists will be

selected. The competition is

open to serving RAF personnel

and MOD civilians serving at

RAF Stations. Application

forms as well as a copy of

the competition rules are

available to download at

www.raffactor.co.uk

The day itself is hoped to

be a real community affair

with live music, displays by

local children’s groups, dance

schools and business as well

as the usual military displays

and concession stands.

Proceeds from the day will

be split between the Royal

Air Force Benevolent Fund

and the British Limbless Ex

Servicemens’ Association

(BLESMA). It is hoped that a

celebrity judge and act will

HAVE YOU GOT IT?

be secured for the final event

and details of this will be

announced nearer the time.

Volunteers to help with the

organising of the regional

heats and to help out on

the main committee are also

needed.

The event organisers are

also looking for live bands to

perform throughout the day

and evening of the festival.

If you are part of a band or

know of a local or Service

band that may be interested

in performing on the day

they should contact the band

liaison committee member via

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

bands@raffactor.co.uk

Interested parties can follow

the event on Facebook and

further information and

committee contact details

are available via the event’s

website www.raffactor.co.uk

REGIONAL HEATS: These are

being held at the following

Stations:

RAF Cranwell: 21 April

RAF Brize Norton: 14 April

RAF Akrotiri: 6 May

RAF Kinloss: tbc

DCAE Cosford: 19 May

RAF Odiham: tbc

Scrap Car Collection

Cash for old vehicles

Scrap, accident damaged,

non-running cars and vans collected.

Environment agency approved vehicle

depollution and recycling centre.

All vehicles handled and depolluted to comply

with all latest EU regulations.

Approved End-of-life Vehicle Centre for 70%

of Major motor manufacturers

Including Ford, MG Rover, VW Group,

Peugeot, Citroen, Fiat, Renault etc.

Direct computer link with DVLA to issue

Certificates of Destruction to

ensure no fines or letters from DVLA.

Required by law as from September 2010

Licensed waste carriers

Consignments notes issued to ensure businesses

and authorities comply with all

waste disposal regulations.

www.scrapcarcollection.com

T & B Motors

West End,Witney,Oxon, OX28 1NF

Environment Agency license number EAWML 86335

Tel 01993 709000

77


78

ASC

ACCIDENT SOLUTION CENTRE LTD

HIGH QUALITY VEHICLE BODY

REPAIRS AND REFINISHING

JOHN BETTERIDGE

UNIT E • NEWMAN COURT • RANGE ROAD

WITNEY • OXFORDSHIRE • OX29 7LY

TEL: 01993 772511 • MOB: 07725 560101

ASCLIMITED@TALKTALK.NET

WHY NOT VISIT OUR WEBSITE

WWW.ACCIDENTSOLUTIONCENTRE.CO.UK

15% discount for Forces Personnel

Established over 25 years

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

Insurance approved

repairers

Accident Repair Centre

Car & Commercial Body Refurbishing Specialists

Unit One Carterton Industrial Estate, Black Bourton Road,

Carterton, Oxford OX18 3EZ

Tel/Fax 01993 845480 E-mail:

gavin_strachan@btinternet.com

• Insurance repairs • Resprays • MOT preparation & servicing •

Valeting • Lo bake oven • Free courtesy vehicles available

• Car hire (small, family, 7 seaters & vans at

competitive rates)


Liam Kenny Motor Body Repairs

We are based in Eynsham, but cover the whole of Oxfordshire including

Abingdon, Banbury, Bicester, Carterton, Chipping Norton, Cotswolds,

Didcot, Faringdon, Henley-on-Thames, Kidlington, Oxford, Thame,

Wallingford, Wantage, Witney and Woodstock.

We offer a vast range of services for your entire accident repair needs. This

includes car body respraying, refurbishment and restoration of all cars.

We have Mercedes Benz, Saab & Lexus approval and are known for

excellent customer service. This aids in taking the stress out of the repair

process of your vehicle. We work along with insurance companies, fleet

operators, trade and the general public.

Air Conditioning

• High Standards

• Valeting

• Bodywork

• 4-Wheel Alignment

• Free Loan on Repairs

15% Discount for armed forces personnel

Already used by MOD cars

www.liamkennycrashrepairs.co.uk

Oakfield Industrial Estate, Stanton Harcourt Road

Eynsham, Witney, Oxfordshire OX29 4TR

Email: info@liamkennycrashrepairs.co.uk

Telephone: 01865 880011 Fax: 01865 883957

Motorcycle

Training

www.oxfordshiremotorcycletraining.com

L

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CBT • Direct Access

Best Possible Price - No Compromise on Quality!

Special deals for Military Personnel!

Call for more information

Oxfordshire Motorcycle Training

01993 812527

www.oxfordshiremotorcycletraining.com

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton 79


Community

Focus

Town Council Surgeries

Cllr Adrian Coomber holds regular surgeries where local

residents can come and meet him and raise issues or problems

with him.

Adrian will be at Carterton Town Hall, Alvescot Road, from

12:00 – 13:00 on the following dates:

Thursday 10th March

Tuesday 29th March

Thursday 7th April

Wednesday 13th April.

Local residents must live within Carterton and appointments

should ideally be booked in advance to avoid disappointment,

although he will see people on a drop-in basis if time permits.

To book an appointment you can call 01993 842156, email

Gateway school has for some years being a member of the

British Council Comenius project which benefits all the children

at the school. At the end of March 2011 we will be hosting two

teachers from a school in Seville, Spain. The Gateway school

children enjoy these visits as they learn so much about different

cultures and countries. Children have also been exchanging

work and some classes have penpals.

Gateway School Assosiation (GSA)

The GSA is a big part of the school as they do numerous

fundraising events for the school and raise monies for different

projects. At the beginning of March there will be a sponsored

bounce and there are regular school discos. The GSA has bought

80

Dear Editorial Team,

I would just like to correct one item that

was published in last month’s edition of

Global Gateway. The dates of my regular

surgeries in Carterton Town Hall were

printed perfectly accurately; however your

chosen heading “Mayoral Surgeries” might

be slightly misleading. I hold surgeries in my

capacity as a “Ward Councillor on Carterton

Town Council”, not as Deputy Mayor of

Carterton which is merely a civic role. I would

be grateful if this could be clarified to your

readers at the very earliest opportunity to

avoid any misunderstanding.

Cllr Adrian Coomber

Carterton Town Council – Upavon Ward

Gateway School

Global Gateway - www.raf.mod.uk/rafbrizenorton

adriancoomber@googlemail.com or write to Cllr Adrian D

Coomber, Carterton Town Hall, 19 Alvescot Road, Carterton,

OX18 3JL.

What have you

got to lose?

The NHS Oxfordshire Weight-loss Lifestyle Service (OWLS) are

running free 12 week weight-loss courses in Witney. If you

would like to attend an OWLS course then contact your GP or

practice nurse to discuss if the course would be suitable for you.

OWLS courses are facilitated by dietitians and psychologists

and run for 12 sessions over 12 weeks. The groups provide a

friendly and relaxed atmosphere to find out what works for you.

In addition to understanding how to lose weight, learning the

skills needed to maintain weight loss is a key part of the OWLS

course which includes regular support for a full year.

To join an OWLS course you also need to be over 16 years

old, registered with a GP in the Oxfordshire area and have tried

to lose weight before.

Contact the OWLS team on 01865 910210 to find out

whether you can join and for more about the course or

visit the OWLS web page.

all the new waterproof dungarees and jackets for the F1 and

Year 1/2 children for when they go to forest school which they

do every week. They also contribute towards school trips and

buy all the drink bottles for all the children plus much, much

more.

School Clubs

The school has many clubs running during the lunch hour and

after school, but now we’re past the February half term break,

many more will be starting with the teachers and support staff

running them. We have a very successful knitting club from

year 3 upwards and a craft club will be starting soon. Other

clubs are as follows:

Hockey, netball, tennis, gardening club, computer club, choir,

recorders (various groups), art, football (summer term the F1

and year 1/2 children).


The Salvation Army at

The Oasis Café say ‘Goodbye’.

It is with sadness that we prepare to say goodbye. Not only

to the customers of The Oasis but also to those of you who

have allowed me to become apart of your lives even if only in a

small way through sharing thoughts on the circumstances your

life. I have counted it a privilege and an honour that you have

accepted me among those whom you have trusted.

3 1 / 2 years ago when I arrived the building was not complete

and I spent 4 months walking around the station introducing

myself and the Oasis Café, taking with me small packets of

biscuits as a sweetener. Once the work was complete and

staff had been employed, we opened. I had no experience of

running a shop and on our first Friday we ran out of milk bacon

and eggs, the staple diet for the day! I soon learnt the lesson

as we had to turn people away.

It proved to be a need on the base and our clientele soon

grew and regulars were the norm. Sometimes we have even

named a dish after a person. A “George Special” is 3 toast

3 fried eggs with double tomatoes. A “McMinn Gut Buster

Breakfast” is a favourite reward after a successful fitness test!

All of this could not have been accomplished without

the staff in the kitchen.

Over the years we have

seen them come and go

but Joanne has been here

from the start and has taken

the role of supervisor. Lisa joined us when

her husband was posted in and Sarah’s husband was

already here. Without the team, my job would be impossible as

they deliver the goods day-in, day-out. I take this opportunity

to thank them for their hard work and dedication and I wish

them well with the new company.

To you, whether Military in blues, greens, as civilians or as

workmen, I can honestly say it has been a privilege to serve

you and to know you. For myself I have been posted to the

Falklands where the original idea came from to start here. As

ISS take up the reigns on the 1st April I wish them well and

may they continue to serve you as we have done.

Angela White

Major

Oasis Café Manager

FAMILIES CONSULTATIVE GROUP MEETING (FCG)

The latest FCG had a good attendance, and the issues raised

were openly discussed and with valuable information being

provided to those who came along. If you did not attend this

meeting, you will be very welcome to come along to the next

meeting of the FCG at 1900 in the Jagger’s Bar on Mon 23

May 2011.

Extracts from the notes of the last meeting:

* Rubbish. Areas of responsibility in the local vicinity to the

Station have now been clarified and arrangements will be made

for the removal of rubbish that are the responsibility of the MOD.

* Fly Tipping. The MOD is responsible for dealing with fly

tipping on MOD land and arrangements will be made to deal

with fly tipping. Those present were encouraged to continue

to report fly tipping outside the Station to WODC on the

website http://www.westoxon.gov.uk/reportit or http://www.

saferwestoxon.co.uk/report-a-crime

* Garages, Abingdon Road. DE confirmed that demolition is

due to commence later this year.

ISSUES RAISED

a) Accommodation. A number of questions were raised about,

regrading and the programmes currently in progress to replace

99 Squadron

Partners’ Events

If you would like to register for notifications of 99

Squadron partners events, an email address has been

specifically set up which will be used to generate

a mailing list. Please email Jackie or Rachel at:

events99sqnladies@hotmail.com

kitchens and install loft insulation. All queries raised were given

a response.

b) MHS. The Area Manager gave an update about the change

to the contractor working for MHS and gave assurances that

there should now be a noticeable improvement in the service

received.

c) Stanmore Crescent area. Issues were raised in relation to

ASB in the play park areas and problems of parking in the area.

d) SFA on station. Questions were raised about the plans to

demolish and rebuild accommodation on station. The plans

were explained.

e) MHS Call backs from Helpdesk. It was reported that the

Helpdesk does not call back when they agree to and it was

requested that this is corrected. A number of individual issues

were raised.

f) Millennium Centre bookings. A concern was raised about

difficulties booking the facility.

g) Policing. Feedback was given about the good working

relationships between TVP and MOD police and the noticeable

reduction in crime.

h) Special Police Constable (SPC). Information was given about

the current recruitment for SPCs and the plan to hold and a

recruiting event later in the year.

I’ve accepted a challenge to complete the Brize Norton Sprint Triathlon

in May. The race consists of a 400m swim, 22km bike ride and 5

km run. I’d like to put together a team of 99 Squadron partners to

encourage and support each other and, most importantly, to raise

money for RAFA. Debs Pratley (Deputy Chair of RAF Tri) has offered

to help with training and technique (apparently there’s something

called a ‘transition’!)She is very experienced at Triathlon and really

keen for us to have a good time. If you are interested, let me know

ASAP, by email. As soon as I have an idea of numbers I’ll arrange a

date for us all to get together and Debs will sort out training packages

to suit all levels. Look forward to hearing from you. Rachel Manning

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