Welcome to the Flying Tyke, 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron's news blog. Keep checking back to keep up to date with the latest Squadron news.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

IACE: Canada 2015 report

 by CWO Karl Verspyck

A place on The International Air Cadet Exchange was my aiming point in cadets for the last 5 years. This was because of the amazing places in the world you could visit and also because of the prestige that goes with representing your country and the corps internationally. I was lucky enough to win a place on this year’s trip to Alberta, Canada and it’s fair to say I was ecstatic when I found out. 

The build up to the trip was exciting as we slowly found more and more people, through the world of Facebook, that were going on the trip with us. Be that UK cadets or international. It soon became apparent that the UK contingent of 24 was going to be the largest on the trip, with countries like New Zealand sending only two cadets. This large allocation was due to the history of IACE and the fact that the first ever exchange was between the UK and Canada so to honour this tradition these two countries exchange the most cadets. I met the UK cadets at Heathrow where we received our ID and name badges and got on our way to Schiphol. Here we met the Dutch contingent who was flying out to Edmonton with us. This was brilliant because we had nearly 10 hours to get to know them!

Whilst in Edmonton we stayed at Edmonton garrison which was an army base just outside the city itself. We stayed here for 3 nights and toured the Alberta legislature building, went to fort Edmonton to learn about the Hudson Bay Company. We spent a day at 4 Wing Cold Lake which was brilliant and very active with it being the largest and busiest air base in Canada! On the Friday we spent the day at West Edmonton Mall which is absolutely huge and included a theme park. I spent the first weekend with a host family and mine was a lovely woman named Helen. She took me and two other cadets, from France and Turkey respectfully, to her cabin on a lake. It was beautiful and we spent the weekend relaxing and out on the water in their boat. Helen couldn't do enough for us and I really felt at home there it was brilliant! On Monday we started with a familiarisation flight in a griffon helicopter over the city of Edmonton and then on the return leg some tactical flying between the trees. It's fair to say it was exhilarating!

We then started our "road trip" down to the south of the province. We stayed in a hotel for two nights in Canmore in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies where we travelled to see the Athabasca glacier which was a surreal experience in the middle of summer. We also went to Lake Louise and we managed to go canoeing on the lake which was absolutely breath-taking. We had some free time in Banff before we headed in the road again to Pincher Creek, south of Calgary. It was here that we were based to go to Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump and learn about how First Nation Canadians used the lie of the land to hunt, you guessed it, buffalo. We also went to Lake Waterton right at the bottom of Alberta and Canada for that matter. This beautiful lake was where we were all lucky enough to see a bear which was on all our lists of things to see in Canada. An evening cruise on the lake took us into the U.S. For about half an hour where we landed on a beach on Montana, the first taste of America for many and much to the delight of the American contingent who could "smell the freedom". The next day we visited Frank Slide, the sight of a massive landslide which buried a whole village in 90 seconds with most of the rock still immovable to this day.

Then it was time to meet our second host families who were based around Calgary. We were all told how different Calgary was to Edmonton and boy were they right. I stayed on a farm with a Turkish girl and two British girls where we were treated to a trip to the rodeo which was incredible and fit all the stereotypes hilariously. Alanna, our host mum, again couldn't do enough for us and we had great fun driving in her truck down disused rail tracks. 

The final two days of the trip were in Calgary touring the bomber command museum which was emotional and also brilliant to see one of the four remaining running Lancaster bombers in the world. We then had a formal farewell dinner at a local legion branch. I must say a massive thank you to the legion for hosting us for dinner in many areas of Alberta. In the final dinner we were made honorary Calgarians and presented with our white Stetson hats. A pizza party back at the hotel followed which gave us chance to exchange polo’s and other gifts we had brought from our home countries. Then it was time to say goodbye to people that we had come so close to over the previous 16 days. It's fair to say that those goodbyes were the hardest I've ever had to say, in particular to the kiwis which occurred through the glass at Calgary airport, mainly due to the huge distances between us all and the fact we may never see each other again. We are all certain that will not be the case though! A muted trip back to London finished the trip off with time for reflection in what was a whirlwind trip full of highs and very little lows. 

As I said IACE was a big aiming point for me and it certainly didn't disappoint. It was by far the best thing I've done in cadets and I'd like to thank the staff at Sqn, wing, region and at corps for allowing me to go on such a monumental trip. I would advise every single cadet to work hard to be able to apply for this trip because it truly was a once in a lifetime journey in which I have shared with amazing people from all around the world.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Wharfedale Air Cadet Named Best Sportsman in Area

An Air Cadet from 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron, Air Training Corps, based in Ilkley, has been named the best Male Sporting Cadet in Central & East Yorkshire Wing.

Sergeant Max Franks, of Burley-in-Wharfedale was presented with the trophy by Wing Commander Wiggins, Officer Commanding of Central & East Yorkshire Wing at the Wings Training Day, held recently at RAF Linton-on-Ouse. The wing contains 29 units including 1224 Squadron and nearly 1000 other cadets.

Sergeant Franks has taken an active part in many of the sports offered by the Air Cadet Organisation, most notably in rugby where he was named captain of the Wing team.

Wing Commander Wiggins presenting Sergeant Max Franks with the trophy

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Wharfedale Air Cadet Completes Aerospace Instructors Course

 by Cadet Warrant Officer Callum Parker 
The Air Cadet Qualified Aerospace Instructor Course is a demanding yet rewarding course for senior cadets. Consisting of a selection weekend, six training weekends and a week-long assessment and graduation week, the course requires a huge amount of dedication and commitment.
With an extensive list of subjects the course delivered learning through a range of topics: Air Power, Aerodynamics, Flight Simulation, Air Traffic Control Simulation, Pilot Studies, Leadership and Teamwork as well as Instructional Technique. The vast knowledge in aerospace disciplines was assessed through multiple exams, a 1500 word essay and a challenging 40-minute presentation.

CWO Parker started his Qualified Aerospace Instructors Course journey by making a paper application in the spring of 2014. Having already achieved the status of ‘Instructor Cadet’ and amassing lots of practical flying experience this was the next logical step. After passing the paper application he then had to attend a selection weekend at RAF Linton-on-Ouse at the beginning of September. The selection weekend tested the cadets’ RAF knowledge, flying and air traffic control aptitude, debating ability, leadership ability and presentation skills before whittling the shortlist from 30 applicants to 20. After being successfully selected, the real work was about to begin, CWO Parker started Qualified Aerospace Instructors Course 7 in the last weekend of September.

During the training weekends, CWO Parker was required to learn about all areas of aerospace and perform to the required standard in order to progress. A poor performance would result in a student being put on ‘review’, if improvement was not made thereafter, the cadet would be required to leave the course. As part of the assessment process, CWO Parker had to complete a 1500 word essay on Air Power in which he chose to focus on Air Mobility. Another huge part of the course was the 40-minute Air Power Presentation which was to be delivered to VIPs during Graduation Week. The presentation was to be made and delivered by each syndicate which consisted of four people; CWO Parker’s syndicate had the topic of ‘Precision Guided Munitions’.

Finally, after seven months of hard work, the course culminated with the Graduation Week at RAF Linton-on-Ouse where the course was held. Starting on Friday 27th March, Graduation Week began with a weekend of assessments. Providing the cadets passed this they were able to go on visits as a reward. The course visited the Air Traffic Control tower and flight simulators of 72 Squadron at RAF Linton-on-Ouse in addition to touring the fast-jets of 100 Squadron and 90 Signals Unit at RAF Leeming to see the subjects they had covered in a practical environment. After the visits each syndicate delivered their 40-minute presentation to an audience comprising of senior military commanders along with industry executives. Following the last presentation the cadets were presented with their certificates and Qualified Aerospace Instructor badges before getting ready for a grandiose graduation dinner held at RAF Linton-on-Ouse’s Officer’s Mess.
On the final morning of Graduation Week the cadets were individually debriefed on their performance and presented with the coveted blue lanyard which signified them as an Air Cadet Qualified Aerospace Instructor. CWO Parker passed the course and is the first person from 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron to have achieved this.



Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Ilkley Air Cadets Celebrate in Style

by Sergeant (ATC) Sam White

On Sunday 15th March 2015 (74 years and one day after the Squadron's first ever parade), 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron celebrated its Annual Dinner and Presentation Afternoon at the Kings Hall in Ilkley.

The afternoon was a chance to celebrate the successes of the Squadron and reward the cadets for their hard work.

Among the guests this year were The Right Worshipful Lord Mayor of Bradford, Councillor Mike Gibbons and the Lady Mayoress, Lady M Sharp, Former Commandant Air Cadets, Air Commodore Ian & Mrs Rosemary Stewart and Officer Commanding Central & East Yorkshire, Wing Commander Steve Wiggins.

The afternoon started rather alarmingly - as the hall had to be evacuated due to a fire alarm.

Grace was said by the recently appointed Chaplain to the Squadron, Reverend Steve Proudlove, and the lunch that followed was extremely good.

The first presentations of the night were the certificated earned by the cadets over the past year, these included Classification Certificates, First Aid Certificates and Health & Safety Entry Level Awards, amongst others.

After the certificates were presented it was time for the awards, the winners are as follows:

Attendance Trophy – Sergeant Bailey Ryan
The Warrant Officers Trophy and the Warrant Officers Cup for the cadet and NCO each earning the highest points for consistently having best turnout over the last year were presented to Cadet Ryan  Griffin and Sergeant Omar Shah respectively
The White Rose Trophy for most promising new marksman – Cadet Alix Tennant
West Riding Wing Cup for Sport – Corporal Max Franks
The Inter-Flight Competition Trophy (first awarded in 1941) was collected by Flight Sergeant Jørgen Moore on behalf of A Flight.
FS Moore and CWO Cavaliere being presented with the Flight Trophy by The Lord Mayor
The Ian (Charlie) Clarke Memorial Trophy for Community Service, named in memory of a young Airman who was killed in a road accident in Addingham in 1991 was won by Cadet Aiden Holmes
Percussionist of the Year – Cadet Mike Palmer
Musician of the Year – Flight Sergeant Jørgen Moore
Best New Cadet – Cadet Ellie Cooper
Tesco Trophy for Best Intermediate Cadet – Cadet Mike Palmer
Millennium Trophy for Best Senior Cadet – Corporal Tom Kraft
The David Stead Memorial Trophy for Cadet Of The Year, presented in memory of Flight Lieutenant David Stead, a former cadet of 1224 who was sadly killed, along with his crew, when the C-130 Hercules he was piloting was shot down over Iraq in January 2005 was won by Sergeant Bailey Ryan.
Corporal Joe Martin won the Commanding Officers Cup for his dedication and leadership and for his own personal development over the last year.
Cadet Pearce Todd won the Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA) Airedale & Wharfedale Salver, awarded to the cadet who collects the highest amount for RAFA over the year
The Squadron was also presented with awards for being the highest collecting ATC unit in both the Yorkshire and Northern areas.
Warrant Officer (ATC) David Wood was also presented with an award for being the highest collecting Adult volunteer in the area.
Corporal Joe Martin collecting the Commanding Officers Cup from Wing Commander Wiggins
There were also various promotions made during the evening, they were:
To Corporal: Ellie Cooper, Charlie Franks, Ryan Griffin and Mike Palmer
To Sergeant: Max Franks and Joe Martin
To Flight Sergeant: Tom Hepworth

During the evening, the band also played a number of excellent sets featuring music such as The Air Cadets, the theme from Family Guy, a medley from Frozen, I Am The Doctor (from Doctor Who), My Heart Will Go On and Fantasy on an Irish Air (amongst other pieces).
In addition to the musicians from 1224 Squadron, there were a number of 'guest' musicians performing with the band, these included cadets from other local Squadrons as well as Cadet Izaak Stanley from 2442 (Westbury-on-Trym) Squadron and Flight Sergeant Ross Ewing from 1743 (Crieff) Squadron - both who along with Flight Sergeant Jørgen Moore and Sergeant (ATC) Sam White are members of the Corps Ceilidh Band - who played an impromptu set following the formal conclusion of the presentations.

Overall the night was a huge success and the guests were extremely impressed with the standard of the cadets, and in particular the band.

You can watch the bands performances on YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC67X6ZZgWMib2huCYlkXLXw

Monday, 16 March 2015

Ilkley Air Cadets Learn AED Skills

 By Cadet Flight Sergeant Tom Hepworth
On Thursday 26th of February 2015, 1224 (Wharfedale) Sqn was visited by volunteers from St. Johns Ambulance service, to teach the cadets how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED), an important aspect of first aid training.

An AED is a portable device that checks the heart rhythm and can send an electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest, a condition in which the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating, which makes it an invaluable skill for cadets to learn!

The St Johns team brought along some ‘dummy’ AEDs, which give the same experience that you would receive from a real one, without the powerful electric shock used to restart the heart! With these, the cadets all got to have a go at practising with the equipment and performing in a simulated casualty situation.

Cadet Corporal, Charlie Franks said “It was really useful experience in case we are ever in that kind of a situation. The instructors understood that it would be stressful and so taught us how to use the equipment, I was really surprised at how easy it was!”

First Aid training is just one of the activities within the Air Cadets, for more information visit www.ilkley-atc.co.uk

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Cadets Become Young Life Savers

On the weekend of the 7th March 2015, 12 cadets from 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron and 2431 (Keighley) Squadron took part in a St. Johns Ambulance Youth First Aid Course at 1224 Squadron’s HQ in Ilkley.

Organised and run by Officer Cadet Kjersti Moore, the cadets were taught a number of First Aid Techniques, including how to deal with both conscious and unconscious casualties, how to recognise and treat various injuries and how to perform CPR.

Following assessment on the Sunday, the cadets were happy to know that they had all passed the course, receiving the red ‘Youth First Aid’ badge.

Sergeant (ATC) Sam White, who assessed some of the cadets on the Sunday, said ‘It’s great to see so many young people willing to learn these skills, which could, in the future, help save lives’.

Wharfedale Cadets Learn Methods of Instruction

On Saturday 28th February 2015, nine cadets from 1224 (Wharfedale) Squadron attended a Cadet Method of Instruction Course at the Squadron HQ in Ilkley.

Instructed by Officer Cadets Kjersti Moore and Tom Smith and Sergeant (ATC) Sam White, the cadets were taught a number of subjects including the Qualities of an Instructor, Lesson Structures, Lesson Planning and Delivery of Lessons.

The course is a pre-requisite to the ‘Instructor Cadet’ Classification, which when completed allows the cadet to undertake instructional duties on Squadron, it also entitles the cadet to wear the yellow lanyard.

Following completion of the course, cadets must then complete an assessed lesson before they become an ‘Instructor Cadet’.

Sergeant Tom Hepworth said ‘I really enjoyed the course and learnt so much! There's a lot more to being an instructor than I thought before the course. I would definitely recommend it to other cadets’.
 The nine cadets that completed the course.