Raf 100



  • Commissioning scroll reads: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.
  • Letter of Appointment states: "Appointed to a commission in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.
  • We’re granted Honorary Member status of the Officers Mess.
  • We’re granted membership of the RAF Club which is open to:

A) Anyone who holds or has held a commission in:
The Royal Air Force.
The Women’s Auxilliary Air Force and The Women’s Royal Auxilliary Air Force.
The Women’s Royal Air Force
The Princess Mary’s Royal Air Force Nursing Service.
The Royal Auxiliary Air Forces.
The Royal Air Force Reserve and Volunteer Reserve (including VR[T]) forces.
Commonwealth or foreign Air Forces.

  • RAFVR(T) are permitted to wear the RAF TRF.
  • RAFVR(T) wear an RAF uniform and rank insignia.
  • RAFVR(T) can be subjected to Courts-Martial procedures.

Silly me for thinking that I’m a member of a Reserve Air Force of the Crown :joy:

[Edited to add: I forgot to mention that VR(T) officers are subject to the "Manual of Air Force Law].


@Gunner I’m going to back-up what the Gp Capt said. Please do not take offence, and bear with me.

Officers of the RAFVR are NOT members of the Royal Air Force. They are members of the RAF Volunteer Reserve, which is an element of what was the Air Force Reserve, a formation renamed 20yrs ago to being the RAFR.

It can be said, formally / legally / officially, that RAF Officers, RAFR Officers, RAuxAF Officers, RAFVR Officers and now RAFAC Officers are all Air Force Officers: because that, correctly-speaking, is [I]exactly[/I] what they are.

All RAF Officers are Air Force Officers: any Air Force Officers who are members of other Air Force formations of the Crown are not RAF Officers.

I’ve given-up ever trying to explain this, over the years, because people generally do not follow the logic in the differences, but I’m going to give it another try here.

The official meaning of the term [I]Royal Air Force[/I] referred only to those formations, personnel and assets that are part of the permanent regular Air Forces of the Crown.

However, people (and most elements of the Regular and Reserve Air Forces of the Crown) have tended to collectively also refer to all Air Force entities as being “RAF”. This is technically and legally incorrect, however, in the context of the RAF being the world’s first independent Air Force, and the excellent international reputation of the RAF, evidently used as an accepted shorthand. Or it has [I] been[/I] accepted, up until the present date.

But in any case: there is an arguable responsibility upon the shoulders of RAFVR Officers to fully-appreciate the the organisational differences between the RAFVR, the RAFR (including the RAuxAF) and the RAF.

If there was any real doubt as to this validity of this difference, we would not be seeing the transfer of the Training branch of the RAFVR into a new commissioned status within a revised Air Force formation called RAF Air Cadets.

A key point: this is neither a trivial matter, nor is it being pedantic.

Let me try to clarify this in another way: many people can accurately say that they had family and friends who were in the Navy during WW2. Or in the Army during WW2.

But: although many people [I]say[/I] they had family and friends who were ‘in the RAF during WW2’, for the vast majority of instances, that is technically-incorrect. Anyone called-up from civilian life for Air Force Service during WW2 actually served in the RAFVR, for embodied service with the RAF. I will emphasise: [U]With[/U] the RAF (embodied) but not [I]in[/I] the RAF.

I’ll try another valid comparison. I’m always uneasy about conceding any points of protocol being more-correct in the United States than in the United Kingdom. But on this topic, they have us beat.

If US citizens see people wearing Naval uniform, they will usually refer to them as being “in the Navy”.

If US citizens see people wearing appropriate military uniform, they will usually refer to them as being “in the Army”.

But if US citizens and other service personnel see people wearing USAF pattern uniform, they will NOT refer to those people as being ‘in the USAF’. They will say, [U]correctly[/U] that “those people are in the Air Force”.

Hopefully you follow my point. They understand (either exactly, or in general terms) that USAF uniform may be worn by:

  • US Air Force active duty personnel
  • US Air Force Reserve
  • Air National Guard
  • State Air Guard
  • JROTC (AF)
  • Civil Air Patrol (USAF Aux)
  • Military Academies running Air Programmes
  • etc

Conversely, in the UK, everyone wearing an RAF pattern uniform is incorrectly-described as being “RAF”…they are not, and never have been. They are members of their own respective Air Force formations.

The regular Royal Air Force is very proud of it’s Reserve Forces and it’s Cadet Force. Collectively, these are all part of the RAF ‘family’.

But an Officer (or an Airman/Airwoman) that is a member of the RAuxAF…or the RAFR…or the RAFVR…or the RAFAC…is categorically NOT a direct member of the Royal Air Force. They are, alongside Officers and Other Ranks of the RAF, collectively, part of the Air Forces of the Crown.


Nice post


However you look at it at time of flux in the Corps for a Gp Capt, who I now assume is no longer in the “RAF”, to stand up and say that without clarification is poor, but little more than you can come to expect…
I think the jury’s still out for many as to whether they remain as officers or bin it (by degrees) so something morale busting regardless of how technically correct, is as I say poor.

As for “RAF family”, many people in RAFA never feel they’ve been supported by the RAF on leaving unless the RAF wants something from them and many view the visits they do as little more than a PR exercise, and they do what they do in RAFA as they see a value to it and supporting colleagues old and young and the value what the cadets do. Pretty much like many in the ATC, the RAF seems to want us as part of their family, but as we are distant cousins you sense we have become increasingly tolerated for an occasional invite or when they want to “borrow something”.


Whilst I don’t disagree with you Wilf (and I never stated in my post that we were regular RAF or RAuxAF), what I’ve found since being commissioned is that you’re an RAF Officer (of whatever flavour) when they want heads to roll and you’re not an RAF Officer when they feel like it.

You must remember the ‘One Force Concept’ and the mantra of the early 90’s - “One Air Force, indivisible and indistinguishable”

Clearly, the Gp Capt who was alleged to have told VR(T) officers that they ‘weren’t in the RAF’ completely forgot about that.


The 5K per region will pay for coach hire, the slop food provided in various barracks where the parade will start from and of course cleaning materials for mirrors to remove lipstick/kiss marks for all those squadron leaders organising amazing and awesome parades…Sorry having gone through cadet 150 and ATC75 I expect to be underwhelmed by those seeking MBEs…


One of our neighbours said there is going to be a special showing of The Dambusters (digitally remastered)next month to mark the 75th anniversary of the raid.
Are they trying too hard?
This is one of my favourite films, but it seems a bit OTT.


shame - i like the idea.

I try and get the “Battle of Britain” film into the September training programme as it seems fitting to do so. why not with the Dambusters??


I don’t know like I say, it seems a bit OTT. It’s a shame they can’t just put it on tele more often without the fuss.

Regardless though as I say it is one of my favourite films, Battle of Britain not so, however, Reach For The Sky, that’s a different matter.


Big fan of Battle of Britain and Dambusters, would happily se either in the cinema if they are showing.

Not a fan of reach for the sky, Bader was a total cretin in reality which spoils the film for me.


Each to their own.
The determination and defiance of Bader to not just roll over, makes it a good watch, IMO. This is exactly the same mindset as those poor sods who lose limb(s) through IEDs etc and don’t just give up. OK Bader might have been a bit of an idiot doing what he did to lose his legs, but then that was so it seems him.
According to accounts Gibson wasn’t the jovial character as portrayed in the film, but doesn’t make it any less watchable.


Is it just me, or does there seem to be more cadets than RAF personnel celebrating the RAF100?
I realise the RAF have a lot on their plate, with more just added, but it seems ironic that they rely on the Cadets for some things and then forget about them for others (AEF, AEG, Annual
Ho him!!


I’m organising stuff for Odiham’ 100. On top of that I can’t take time off regular duties to make time to plan, whenever anything comes in that’s an urgent requirement for theatre I have to drop everything else and make time for that. I also have secondary duties within work to organise, off the top of my head, PPE, FAAW, manual handling, fire training, security briefs, the occasional guard rotation. I then take as many cadet parade evenings as I can at the squadron where I’m an SI. When you take into account I’m also studying for a degree, keeping the wife happy, sorting out physical therapy for my injuries and in general just middling on with life I get quite annoyed when people say the RAF doesn’t care about the cadets and the service doesn’t put in the effort. In the past six months I’ve managed to organise several station visits, use of the facilities such as sports fields, go-kart track.

Now whilst this is probably quite an unfair rant, I know that some don’t put in the effort, but please don’t tar everyone with the same brush.


Thank you for all your hard work, especially with all you have on!!
I wasn’t really directing this at the people at the coalface, such as SIs and ACLOs, more the so called decision makers at the top!!


I fully understand, it wasn’t directed at anyone in particular. I just don’t want to be tarred with the same brush as others on certain positions.


Given the decreasing size of the RAF and continuing tempo of operations I think the ACO is damn lucky to get the support it does, be thankful for a change.


Douglas Bader, Guy Gibson and to an extent Roger Bushall were products of their upbrining and their experiences in the pre-war RAF in regard to their attitude to non-officers a far better example is people like Leonard Cheshire.


There are more people in the ATC than the RAF and as we are much vaunted as the ‘light blue footprint’, and in places that the RAF never existed or have been long gone, so by default there will be more cadets and staff at RAF 100 events than RAF personnel. We haven’t got an RAF presence within 60 miles and due to the roads is a 1½ hours on a good day.
I amuses me that senior RAF Officers will be invited to the cadet events and uniformed cadet staff fawn all over them like they are Gods. These people will then dine out on meeting Air something Bloggs for years. But they’ll have got in their chauffeured cars and not give them another thought and probably glad to get away from them. Although they may enjoy getting their egos massaged for a few hours. I’ve met some of these over the years and not one has impressed me to the point where I can remember their names.


Well on a more positive note I was at the regional parade in Doncaster last Sunday.There were about 700 cadets on parade and approx 200 staff.It was a good parade although the “crowds” in the town centre seemed a bit sparse and not very enthusiastic.The inspecting officer was okay although as some have said I cant remember who he was and I spoke to him (fleetingly).The CAC was there and didnt seem to interact with staff or cadets at all that I could see.However the stand out performer on the day was Vordermann. She was unfailingly polite attentive and interested in everything that was going on.She could have got seriously hacked off with the amount of cadets and staff asking for selfies but she never stopped smiling and asking questions and saying how proud she was to be there and how moved she was.I have to say I was a bit sceptical about her when she was given this role but after seeing her work the crowds shes a class act.Unlike some so called celebs.


Vorderman is a celeb and used to this so you’d expect little different.

While having that many cadets and staff is what you might expect (they’d been told to), what was the RAF’s contingent? We had out big do a couple of years ago, all we should be doing is supplying a contingent for RAF 100 parades.

Our RAFA branch is having a do in July for RAF 100 and the only VIPs are MP and Mayor. There was a suggestion of a senior officer, but it was voted down by the committee. Our two squadrons (including the one I’m on) have been told to only send 4 cadets each.