Firstly I would like to thank you for contributing to the post. It has digressed somewhat but this is often the case I find with such things… And if nothing more it does bring about a debate for me… Heritage vs Legacy.
Now let’s be clear from the start; I have been with the Sqn for over 2 decades in various capacities. I have every respect for what has come before (including old schoolers) but I’m very much invested in the here and now as well as moving forward into the future. My post wasn’t a case of someone new coming in and deciding- oh that’s shinny I wonder if we can sell it!
I acknowledge your concerns with my original post and how it was worded but frankly that doesn’t really concern me. And I’m sure the same would be the case if our roles were reversed. Also we are all entitled to our opinions.
I am interested however with the idea though that the propeller in question should be kept for heritage purposes… Is this the case because it has been in the building for years? Because it is aviation based? What is the difference between being old and having a heritage value?
We have some wooden chairs that have been in the Sqn for even longer, many OCs, Adjs, wos, wsos, visitors have sat in them. Should these also be kept as part of the Sqns heritage. Granted they are of a fabulous quility and have lasted well (also likely have more of a heritage value than the propeller) but where do we draw the line?
Does any item that has been part of a Sqn for over a certain amount of time qualify or does an item need to have a good story behind it to qualify. What if somthing is just old with no exciting story… Say a propeller that was donated back in the day sat in a class room taking space and served no real purpose. Eventually taken down as it was in danger of toppling on cadets…
Plaques on the wall from stations visited decades ago who’s story no one knows. Trophys broken long ago that will never be used again. OHPs and pull up projector screens that may yet be used some day.
The line must be drawn here this far no further ( sorry a moment of weakness there). But seriously being proud of our individual and collective history and heritage is important but not as important as the legacy that we leave or impart on others .
The reason I remain part of RAFAC is due to the legacy of the staff when I joined. What they taught me about the ATC and life. About how to be a better person, how to treat others and above all else never to give up… Don’t accept a no win situation! These were life lessons made whilst experiencing some amazing adventures and making friends and family. (something I would bet is the same for many people reading this).
That’s what the RAFAC is about “The Cadet Experience”. Providing opportunities that will stay with our cadets all their lives.
What do you think cadets will remember in years to come: the propellor on the wall or the amazing Stem project they did. The old chair or the adventure training camp they attended where they did something out of this world.
The truth is that that hunk of metal that has been hidden away for years can do 1 of 3 things for our Sqn:
- get cleaned up and go on display and maybe be a talking point.
- Stay hidden away in the store taking up space for another several years.
- Be sold on to someone who will appreciate it whilst raising funds that allow us to create an even better cadet experience and lasting memories.
Fund raising continues to get more difficult often with multiple charities in each area competing against each other (all being deserving causes in their own right). Sometimes we need to look at opportunities that present themselves especially sqns that are situated in deprived areas.
The propeller represents an opportunity…
(written from the comfort of my old wooden chair).