Fieldcraft policy update - Dec 2018


Training cadets to be infantry soldiers…

…not even sure how to go about responding that.


Do you work for Vice?


I actually think it is quite a well written document which permits us scope to do much more with the cadets than before. It makes use of the existing document to coordinate and deliver the lessons which makes far more sense than the ATC dumbing that down and producing its own lessons.

What is missing for me are the scales of blank and pyro available to support the delivery of more complex exercises. As I understand it, the SATT teams are allocated a chunk each year to maintain their currency but beyond that, I would question what is actually available and how we go about accessing those stocks.

In terms of the naysayers, I would argue that the Organisation has not exactly showered itself in glory to help fill the gap left from reduced flying and gliding opportunities - this demonstrates that we can coordinate and deliver training to the cadets which is useful to them and which they will enjoy more through the introduction of this policy. I would also argue that Force Protection is something that the RAF spends a lot of time and effort investing in through the Regt and other formations - surely we are also here to provide training to the cadets that is useful to them in both service and civilian life?


I think we should have easier access to the CTC frimley park. There structure of relevant courses allows easy access for the ACF to obtain the relevant quals.

If the corps wants to really enhance the shooting and fieldcraft syllabus they should establish a centre similar to this to provide the relevant quals

The SATT teams do a good job given a part time basis.


As I said earlier, go purple which allows for a common syllabus and common instructor training. I’m sure the RAF and Army train the same way, why not the ATC/ACF/CCF. Cost savings could be immense.


I think more inter service training wouldn’t go wrong, however
going purple would need a HUGE remould and it would be to the detriment of the Corps
i think.


The allocation is still with the SATTs and Regions. Wings will need to approach them for access and it’s for the Region to manage.

The expectation is that blank and pyro is done at higher level Wing or Region events and not by individual units.

The number of blanks and smoke varies depending on what each SATT order in their AER. That was cut significantly this year along with the whole RAF AC ammunition order.


So what’s the point. This will damage the rifles meant for target shooting and cost lots in stores, just to make Cadets carry rifles around whilst they play in the woods. These are active firearms, not decommissioned ones that some have used on FT. If a cadet misplaces one you would have to declare a major incident and all the inherent publicity around that!! Does the ACP cover the procedures around that happening?

So what else do you call it? It’s not training the cadets to be pilots, is it?
Advanced FT teaches harbouring, patrols and ambushes. So if that is not Infantry training what is it? Adding blanks and pyrotechnics is to recreate battle conditions, is it not? You will be training cadets Infantry tactics, weapon use and survival in the field. What else is it, but Infantry training?


By your logic we shouldn’t teach Rock Climbing because it would be training cadets to irresponsibly solo El Capitan?

Ultimately - we are maximising the quality of training, adding immersive elements like Blank and Pyro, and most importantly offering cadets a fun and safe activity.

If you don’t like - don’t do it.


The ACFTI doesn’t cover the process but None of our paperwork does. ACP 26 is the closest you would get.

The point is immersion and realism of training, why can’t we use the rifles, it is what they are designed for remember. They’re not carrying an L144 around.


I am concerned with the potential of damaging what is a limited resource solely for the dubious benefit of “immersion”, as well as the additional logistical effort of fielding L98s. This seems pointless at low level but something that would be more worthwhile introducing at a higher-level course.

Would we be using BFAs and associated mags when used for fieldcraft? Do we even have them to use?


If using a live rifle on DTE you should have a BFA fitted.

In most cases magazines won’t be needed but if firing blanks then yes, you would need proper mags.

The RAFAC has a stock based at cranwell but it’s the same as the L85 so most stations will have some they can loan. As ever we are bottom of the pile if they are demanded by other units.

The L98 is significantly cheaper than the L103, L116 or the rubber equivalent so by all means a better rifle to use.

If people look after them properly and clean them after use then they will be fine.


Training with rifles should start at the low level to enable the high level stuff. All the basics change when you have a rifle to worry about as well so it should be integrated as early as possible to avoid having to re-train.


You can start out doing lower level exercises with weapons but without blanks, this then builds as Training goes on.


Sqn/sector/wing = dry training
Region and above (potentially wing) = blank and pyro

SBFS (BFA, adapted mags, blank ammo) is able to be requested the same as drawing weapons and ammo from RAF Stations.

By the time you get a cadet on a blanks exercise they should be well drilled at use and cleaning of the weapon. Something Baldrick picked up on was the reteaching of drills and time given to cleaning. Allowing CWS at lower levels of training will actually be beneficial to JL.


No I’m not!
That is the second time you have tried to put words in my mouth rather than answer the points I have raised. Are you going to answer the points I have raised or just continue to try a ridicule me because I don’t agree with you?

How is giving cadets active firearms keeping that activity safe? How will it maximise the quality of training? What do you mean by immersive elements? They are loud bangs to replicate battlefield loud bangs. How will 10 rounds per cadet and 5 pyros make it a more immersive experience, apart from a brief time of lots of noise?

Your last point is a really childish retort. My opinion is clear on this issue. It is not worth the cost implications to allow a few cadets to carry guns and staff to throw flash bangs when playing soldiers. It seems a massive indulgance for a few staff to get the public purse to pay for this activity! Especially as a lot of the cost implications have not been thought through.

As a cadet I enjoyed FT and would have jumped at the chance to use BFs, but as I have got older my opinion has changed. It is not worth the cost and extra bureaucracy to do something that is the raison d’etre of our sister organisation that has the budget, training and facilities to do it!!


It might be what they are designed for, but it was not what they were purchased for, or what they are used for at the moment


Pointless! Just give them sticks if they are not going to be fired! That’s all they are, without any BFAs or blanks. These are expensive pieces of kit and shouldn’t be treated in this way to the detriment of Target Shooting.


Hardly putting words in your mouth - just taking your logic and applying it to other situations within our organisations - where, seemingly, it doesn’t apply.


As I said…you’re entitled to your opinion.

But you’re wrong.