Air Cadet Gliding Petitions

Hi my dear colleagues,

As you all well aware with recent changes to the Gliding Programme such as disbanding VGS’s.

There is now a petition to not disband and still give the chance for more cadets to glide and more cadets to have the chance to complete a scholarship.

Gliding teaches a wide range of skills that is very useful for future life!

if some of you are really dedicated to provide first class training for young people then contact your local MP like I did to raise the issue in their area. maybe they can even get the local media to promote to the wider community to sign this petition and can even promote some more willing volunteers.

so I ask, please sign this petition here and please email your local MP that can help with making the issue more aware. here is the link to the petition:

regards. I hope this will help massively for the sake of the young generation.

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You must be delusioned to think that a petition like this will acutally change the Government, MOD, RAF and ACOs mind.


I understand what you mean, nothing will change the government’s policy’s.

but this petition will raise AWARENESS. that’s my goal: to raise awareness that our younger generation will be missing out less on opportunities.

If there was more marketing and awareness the hopefully it can create more willing volunteers to help out the sqn if you see where im coming from?

No I can’t I’m afraid. It just makes ALL of us look stupid. Thanks for that. I mean it wasn’t helpful we are in this situation, but we would have made it work. Now you’ve made us all look silly.

There comes a point when you have to make some sort of a stand.

I can’t imagine all of those being affected by the proposed HS2 and various other things like that, feel they are being to be made to look silly by signing a petition and or sending a letter to MPs and or filling out a consultation questiionnaire. Yes it probably won’t make no difference but who knows it’s youth and this is a big plus and MPs love a group photo with youngsters. How many MPs have at least one sqn in their constituency, if you have one squadron, a letter from staff and one from the CWC and if you can from all parents, 30 odd emails or letters to read all making a similar point, might just get some questions in the house. I’m pretty certain the PM has a squadron or two in his constituency. If HQAC don’t like it because it’s not how Officers should act or some such, they should read the letters pages of proper newspapers, I’ve seen a number from Officers of all three services explaining how govt and or MOD policy is a crock of poo.

I can see the only people not to like it are those it will make look really silly … HQAC, 2FTS and 22 (Group) who in two years haven’t been
1 able to get some very basic aircraft into the air
2 able to provide a meaningful alternative, in fact purposefully put barriers in the way

I think the only difference is this is one time they would like to badge us as MOD employees and told expect the turnip however they wish to deliver it and not complain.

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The PMs own mum spoke out at some cuts in her community. If THAT doesn’t change things, a petition won’t. There’s not a chance in hell that 100,000 people will sign it. It will be news for a week then forgotten and all that will happen will some people will look silly after the dust has settled. I’d focus your energy on providing something tangible for the cadets.

I wouldn’t be too worried about looking stupid, we are armatures compared to the government in that respect.
The petition will most likely make no significant difference at all, they are mostly the preserve of lefty twaterarty pressure groups, but the government will have to make some sort of response at 10K. According to the site 146 petitions have got in excess of 10K. It’s not clear if that is for 1year or all time, but we are over 5K already which is actually pretty good for only half a day. Go on sign up, you can actually sign two people from the same e-mail address, so add the wife or cat as well. It might just stop some one getting a knighthood, if nothing else.

Thanks for your negativity Plt_off_prune.

I can understand very much where you are coming from. But why do you have an objection and thinking people will look silly by standing their ground in what they believe in?

I for one volunteer to develop young cadets and to give them the best opportunity to grow into disciplined adults. If that means I should sign a petition then that’s what I would do. I just want to make other people aware they can help by signing even when we know it will get us no where, at least the politicians will see that we are willing to help young people

It will raise awareness in the public that while we are facing drastic cuts across society and our armed forces are being scaled down while going without the equipment they need to do their job effectively, we are wasting millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money annually to let teenagers play in gliders.


How negative is that?

The amount we spend on gliding is a drop in the ocean compared to how much money quite literally gets wasted in the public sector. When you consider within the MOD supply, nuts/bolt that you can buy in a bag in Screwfix or Toolstation will cost the MOD 10 or 20 times the amount for a single nut/bolt because it is the MOD, a nut/bolt is a nut/bolt but MOD supply buyers get Del Boyed by people and because they are idiots don’t question it; in the NHS disposable gloves and other things as have been reported are purchased at a ridiculous premium. A small saving in these areas would cumulatively buy us all a glider.

What is it might just do is raise awareness of the loss of a unique opportunity for all kids regardless of background and educational achievement. In the real world flying is relatively a rich boy’s game, yet cadets could learn to fly a glider for nothing and inspire them to go on to do things far outside their expectations. Whereas a first aid qualification, which seems to be the Corps’ current comfort blanket, isn’t as inspirational and leading to other things. If it’s anything like where I work for insurance reasons FA qualifications gained outside the company as such aren’t valid so can’t be used.

When peoples libraries are being closed, access to social care for disabled people or the mentally ill, when their house burns to ashes because of drastic cuts to fire and rescue, when the police can’t respond to bully burglar bashing your head in becusse they have no staff - the public tend to consider THOSE more important to finance than a “jolly for posh kids from a grammar school”. I know that isn’t the case, but that’s how it will be portrayed in the press and by then it’s too late and the image sticks.

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The only reason the image persists is because the real ATC isn’t fully recognised by Parliament, despite MPs having little or no contact by comparison with CCF which is the grammar school / posh image.

Local authorities waste money hand over fist, pay people far too much for half jobs (a bit like the MOD) and when it comes to cuts like to only highlight the bits that grab headlines. You could lose a raft of people on 40+ in local authorities and not notice the change.

The public sector was over inflated in terms of people by the govt from 1997 to 2010 in all the wrong areas and when it was looked at critically nothing was going to be easy in terms of cuts. If the cuts had just been to the admin side, the unions would have been up in arms.

Reality and perception are vastly apart from each other. The government deal in reality mostly. Perception gets them elected mostly.

Well, it’s soon to hit the 10,000 mark; hopefully it will push onwards & upwards (unlike the gliding for the last 2 yrs).

It would be interesting to see the balance/finance information here. For companies with buildings/infrastructure, equipment & personnel, in general terms the 2nd highest cost is the personnel. For the VGS situation, personnel costs = much lower due to the volunteer aspects (yes, maintenance personnel are paid staff). For equipment, aircraft in this case, there is no new cost to bear - other than repairs/refurbishment. Perhaps there are contractual elements that will minimise this area?

Buildings/infrastructure = already in situ, albeit with the need to beef up some areas (accommodation, etc).

So, whilst that simplifies matters, I cannot see how there is a huge increase in budget for the changes to the VGS; for the “new” AEFS, again, aircraft/infrastructure already in existence & many of the staff = volunteers (or current serving).

Hopefully this petition will raise awareness & generate lots of (FoI-based) questions.

This was exactly what I mean, getting people to ask more questions and just generally raise awreness

There is always an aim with raising awareness, and i’m not sure you really have the right one (in your mind and heart it may be) practially i think it’s going to turn out slightly different. I hope not, but experience says otherwise. Best of luck.

thank you Plt_Off_Prune, don’t know if you agree with me that this is what the corps need? some more awareness to build rapport and gain more volunteers? but good always comes out of negativity does it not?

We need more volunteers, this is not the way to do it. Reading headlines of cuts and chopping of flying i would be really reticent as a volunteer to joining. It doesn’t present a good image. That’s just my opinion though, and i don’t claim to be right all the time.

You are facing stuff like this which frankly gets more people het up

So the Air in ATC should just quietly fade away because Joe public might be more concerned that bigger things they hold dear are being cut, scrapped, sold off or thrown away?
The public are angry about cuts to the armed forces and other public services in the face of mega bucks still being thrown at the EU and foreign aid. They won’t worry about one good thing being funded just because other things are being cut.
10,000 signatures in little more than 24 hours is actually quite impressive. There are dozens of petitions we have over taken today that have not achieved that in six months.
Don’t underestimate the huge effection for the organisation that exists in a large part of the general population. Those in charge at HQAC continue to survive on the back of it for now. And as for those people that don’t know what an Air Cadet is, well they won’t take much notice one way or another.