Funding the Cadet Experience


Spurred on by the latest Uniform thread and the wider MoD Funding thread.

Is there not a rational business case for HQAC to expand and diversify it’s income streams so that we can do more and better, rather than what we can, with less.

What could HQAC do to generate funds from other sources?

As stated in the GPF charity annual report, we already source funds for some activities from outside sources:

a. The Malcolm Club Fund’s income is used to fund flying scholarships and grants for expeditions (known as Scarman Scholarships).
b. The BAE Millennium Fund’s income is used to subsidise IACE airfares.
c. The Joseph Singleton Memorial Fund’s income is used to fund two annual cash prizes to accompany the presentation of the Lees Trophy and the Morris Cup. The Lees Trophy is awarded to the best ATC Squadron and the Morris Cup is presented to the runner up.
d. The Stan Easton Memorial Fund is used to provide a cash award to an ATC cadet producing the best article linked to an aviation theme. This competition is not run annually and is dependent on having enough interested competitors.


What it would be good is for a portal for cadets to purchase thise optional bits of uniform/kit at a cost that is well under current retail price i.e. Cost of purchasing + logistics and handling costs + maybe a £1 to go back in the kitty. Allows cadets to purchase said item without funding rip off direct and other such targetting services.

Things id like to see would be things like the polo that NO3A Dress now refers to. Webbing, Bergens, Boots, Parade Shoes etc

Or could this be how i make my millions


The concern has to be that HQAC don’t just go for money to fund their grandiose schemes, rather than putting the money into the grassroots or to benefit cadets at a local level.
Look at the way the RAFCT was plundered to pay for flight sims at disparate locations, rather than say giving the money to squadrons to buy their own and how RFCA money was diverted to pie in the sky VGS’. I know squadrons who were promised new builds/work done, that was pulled as a result.
Personally I wouldn’t trust HQAC or the GPF trustees with a kid’s money box.
While I do think that we need to get into different funding streams the management as I say cannot be under the remit of HQAC and senior officers as they have proved untrustworthy IMO.


Indeed, that has happened.


One of my mates left as a result of being told work that had been deferred for 2 years, then promised wasn’t going to happen due to this fiasco. The squadron still hasn’t had the work done and he left about 2 years ago.


I passionately despise the logic of giving squadrons who are already identified as good a cash injection. Ergh.

But yes. An income stream for a centralised shop isn’t a bad plan. Certainly there are other organisations who have already been down this road and doing well from it. Even internally, I see the RIAT shop already exercising this Avenue.


Yes it is a slightly odd idea isn’t it, but I guess the wider picture is that the squadrons that aren’t doing as well aren’t doing well for a while variety of reasons and not just cause they can’t get funds.

I can sympathize with the viewpoint that some cadets/staff won’t be able to purchase our, but in theory we should already have the assistance in place to support them. (How many cadets can’t afford shiny mtp so get issued second/third/tenth hand DPM from the sqn stores?


Thats where if we insist cadets need to purchase stuff. There needs to be an infrastructure in place where cadets can get it at a reasonable price


When the ADCC started, cadets had to buy uniform and if I’m correct so did cadets in the early ATC and look how many cadets there were then and the majority of people were not well paid. OK different times, but there were 5 or 6 times the number we have now.
All those in the Scouts have to buy their own uniform.
Bizarrely the fact we get it supplied doesn’t mean we have huge waiting lists or membership compared to The Scouts.
We have got “flabby” as we now get things cheap or free and it’s not translating into numbers in squadrons across the country.


Generally in agreement with that - whilst there is scope to spend money at corps level, it’s slightly more useful at region level and far more so at wing level. There’s also a lot scope to spend money at sqn level, or at the very least alleviate some of the costs so that sqns can spend money on other, more useful things instead.


It also happened that VGSs have had essential works deferred, moved, cancelled, moved again, removed then moved a bit more for over a decade.


But in the grand scheme of things cadets do not meet at a VGS and as the public front of the Corps, squadrons have to be prioritised.


Maybe, but not even having building lighting does impact on how much of very thinly spread gliding opportunities those cadets will get.


That argument doesn’t quite hold unfortunately given the order of magnitude greater dress regulations we have to go by.
Generally in scouting the only mandatory item of uniform is the shirt and scarf, maybe trousers and belt. Thats compared to the working, Wedgewood, and combats.


This then comes back to the original problems with uniform supply, ie have a extensive dress regs then supply us as per the regs with no problems, or lighten up on the dress regs


Out of interest it would be interesting to know who is provider of MTP to the armed forces and the cost price of providing a recruit with trousers, lightweight jacket (shirt)and a smock. Then comparing it against the current retail price. To see how much it could reallistically cost a cadet to buy genuine kit through a ficticious RAFAC store.


Realistically, not much different to the cost of buying new from anywhere else - only your profit margin is going to vary. So if it costs £100 for a brand new set, maybe you could get it down to £80 or so.


I can’t remember the uniform prices, but a DPM inf Bergen with side pockets and yoke was (I think) about £70 each.

Personally I think a better option would be for an ACO shop to buy stuff from the MOD at the disposal point - so instead of the MOD selling it to Field Textiles (for example), they sold it to the ACO - I think they pay the MOD about £15 max for a Bergen…


That would work a treat!


That’s a good option, although no reason not to sell both new and surplus/used as other stores do. Price varying by quality/grade.