Gliding "paused"



but my point being, when i was a Cadet or even go back pre pause there were two routes to get Cadets in the air
Gliding and AEF

until recently the only route was AEF - thus the success rate was 2%
now we’re all gliding that rate will rise to 4% on the assumption it is a 50/50 split.

regardless of what the split is, 50/50. 40/60, 99/1 - the expectation i have (your post #2122) is for 1 flight, per year per Cadet


You could say exactly the same thing for MT - and yet the RAF are happy for us to use civilian coach companies rather than providing RAF MT for every journey we make. I can’t really see that there’s a huge degree of difference…


Reading the comments about the civilian flying made me wonder,
What ever happened to air experience flights???

The ones where 2 cadets went to an airport and an airline flew them on a quick return flight like London to Edinburgh???


I hope I wouldn’t have to explain the difference between a coach journey and an AEF or VGS flight?? If your going to take cadets flying in whatever aircraft, you have to assess the risk. The military assess passenger flying robustly because of history. It just isn’t acceptable to expose cadets to unnecessary risk in any environment. Surely you understand that?

Don’t forget that AEF flying is provided as part of the LAFT Babcock contract. It’s going to continue until the end of that contract at least. Beyond that, who knows??

As for VGS flying, the Risks are assessed in the same robust way. Whilst cadets fly in RAF gliders I don’t see that changing. If you apply the same robust assessment to a BGA club for example, the DDH may not be happy to allow cadets to fly at that club? That’s just the way it is I guess?

2FTS are also fully focused on glider recovery, probably not spending time going to BGA clubs assessing their suitability to fly our cadets. Just not a priority to them I guess at the moment? Maybe it will change in the future?


Possibly but I’m not certain as a result of 9/11 it was stopped and also with the airlines de-nationalised plus DBS, risk analysis/aversion etc.


There are plenty of differences, but it’s the similarities I’m interested in.

Both are potentially lethal risks (and have led to cadet fatalities in the past). Both involve risk mitigation by means of regulation, inspection and servicing of machinery and training and licencing of operators.

So why does one need to be kept ‘in-house’ to control risk whereas in the case of the other the MoD is perfectly happy to accept that the civilian system is fine and abdicate responsibility for safety to it?


Adding fuel to the fire that MattB is offering

The same can be said for AT events – outside civilian suppliers can be used providing the RAFAC required ticks in boxes are provided.

Be it rock climbing, kayaking, or walking up a mountain all share the potential for lethal risks. All involving controls on the risks but a stict box ticking of the RAFAC’s requirements (qualifications, experiences etc)


Guess you’ll have to ask the relevant DDH or AOC 22Gp??


Maybe it’s about the cost of outsourcing flying/gliding as well as risks?


My 14 year old son is allowed to drive 2 jeeps, (1 an automatic and 1 with a manual gearbox) and the 1950’s era tractor at his BGA gliding club.

Would a VGS allow him to do that? Be honest now!


Cost and PFI, now there’s a whole different can of worms, just look at Afcent Air Tanker and the C17 programmes and tell me that was a good use of money


Don’t know any VGS that uses such equipment? But if they did, then no. But at 14 he wouldn’t be old enough to be staff on a VGS!


If we’re talking about non-public funds then that’s not really an issue.


Nope because he wouldn’t be insured not having a driving licence. Like he’s probably not insured at the BGA club if he runs someone over wonder who’ll pick up that damages claim


The fatality rate for bus/coach users in UK is 0.3 per billionpassenger miles. The fatal accident rate per million flights in UK light aircraft is about 10. The risk factor and the safety actions you need take are entirely different. Why do you think light aircraft flying is excluded from most life and travel insurance policies?


The total number of cadet fatalities is - to my knowledge - on the same sort of scale though.


It’s probably covered by the same insurance that allows a 14 year old boy to fly a glider solo over roads, villages etc.


VGS jeeps in picture.


Or more likely, not covered at all and they’re just hoping it never goes wrong.


right i have an answer -ish

I have the 2012-2013 VGS numbers for the Corps

these are the number of places offered to the Wings, not necessary flown or filled.
The number do not take into account GS, these are GIC places only from what I recall

The LHS column shows in alphabetical order, the RHS in descending order.

I couldn’t find the data on Wing population at the time I found this data, and even more unlikely to now 6 years on, but offers an idea of where each Wing sat in the grand scheme of the VGS places offered

the table below showing the number of places offered by the VGS sites
those highlighted in yellow are the sites remaining open…

At a guess Wing Population hasn’t fluctuated much more than 10% for us all given the general size of the organisation has been relatively flat so those interest could determine how these numbers sit against the Wing population today (for ours is ~80%)