The RAFAC in 2019


Medical and theory tests are paid for by the individual, them claimed back on a 1771.


Do you know how many tests you can apply for funding? What happends if i wasnt to pass first time?


up to two attempts are paid for…




The Scouts exist as a brand in their own right and the Fleur de Lis has been the Scouts logo for a long long time and instantly recognisable. Although I recall reading an article last year or the year before where Scouts HQ said they wanted to “contemporise” the logo as it was apparently outdated, which to me (like the football kit principle) essentially means we aren’t making enough from selling things as people don’t need to buy new. Also we’ve got too much money and can pay a design consultancy to reinvent the wheel we have.

We as a an organisation have had the beret badge for years which could have been “logoised” and become a brand. But we have gone through all the “next generation” BS and now the God awful corporate RAF rubbish. Why we just can’t have been called “Air Cadets” year ago no symbols or iconology and had that as a logo baffles me. Look at longstanding brands / logos which may have changed shape etc, but have stayed the same in essence for years. Which will as sure as eggs are eggs will change. We don’t and never had an identifiable logo and brand. Let’s be honest we haven’t been identified with the RAF formally (like RAFA) despite getting RAF cast offs running the ATC, until the RAF found itself shrinking faster than an iceberg in the Sahara and invented the “RAF Family” rubbish to try and increase its presence.

So in 2019 or any year could you see HQAC running something like the Scout shop with all those sorts of things mentioned? Before you can really start doing that you need an established brand and TBH we’ve got by for this long without one, so do we need one?
WRT HQAC they can’t even get some badges for cadets who complete parts of a training scheme, they dreamed up, sorted out and look at the lash up they came up with for the new epaulette slides, that for all the world like something a well meaning relative would make. Then some joker wants you to pay more than 50p for a pair of extras.


FYI the RIAT Camp (which is HQAC run) has a shop where RIAT Camp (and IACE) branded merchandise is sold. wicking t-shirts both for No3 dress or regalar use, hoodies, wind-stopper/soft shell coats.

so to answer your question: yes i can see it happening as it already is

it would require a little more infrastructure as there is only half a dozen products but a HQAC run shop is in place so only requires expansion


Going OT looking at the Scout Shop under the Air Scouts I quite liked the activity trousers, which look ideal for normal parade night wear.
Maybe this is something that should be considered for us, as they look a lot more wearable and versatile than the trousers we get issued.


The Scout Association seems to run a brand/program re-launch every 15-20 years, and indeed they launched their new logo and brand style in May 2018.

Yes we would actually need to develop our brand further, but this is all about growth and recruitment.

The Scouts have ~450000 young people with ambition to reach 500000 by 2024 (IIRC)
Our latest aims for the organisation was “well we’ll try and deliver what we can” . . .

The scouts have a very recognisable brand, and tbh i would argue that we do to in the RAFAC logo, but that needs to then be taken and worked into a design for casual clothing.


and scouts have to buy all their uniform, but then again have a much more relaxed policy of what young people must wear.


The problem with the current logo is it screams RAF rather than Air Cadet, as the Air Cadet like RAFA is an afterthought.
Whatever The Scouts do with the Fleur de Lis it says Scouts.

As I recall the RAF batted away the idea of RAF Air Cadets for years, which is why I am suspicious of the move to let us become that.

I would love to see that as our vision / mission statement given its accuracy.


not that I can find the 2025 Strategy Document to confirm it . . .

update. found it.


I managed to find the 2008 Strategy ducument, in which the first “Key Strategic Priority” is recruitment and retention.

Cadet Recruitment and Retention
To build an ACO for the 21st century we need to recruit and then retain increasing numbers of enthusiastic young people. We have set a target of growing the ACO to 50000 by 2018. Recruitment . . .


We don’t have one beret badge, we have four (five if you count CAC’s).


I would argue that we have far more individual unit identity within the RAFAC given there are far less units and each has it’s own (fairly) unique crest. All the casual clothing I’ve ever seen offered for sale/issued to cadets by squadrons and wings has had that unit’s crest on it, much less has the RAFAC logo anywhere to be seen.


I’m totally against this obsession with going to RAFAC branded clothing, my Cadets and Staff all have Squadron branded kit which is far more useful in both the local area and inter-unit events.


well yes, I completely agree.
There is next to no support from higher levels of the RAFAC with regard to recruitment.

Of course on a local level each unit might have quite good brand recognition via their unit badge, but that doesn’t lead to good Air Cadet recognition nationwide.

I guess the reason i though of all this was the introduction of the new 3A mtp/dpm and polo combination. What would it take for HQAC to have an interactive web store with polo shirt and baseball cap options that meet the regs, where sqn’s could log in and customise with unit badges etc and order however many they want?
Then also expand that out to casual clothing as well.


FYI the RIAT Camp (which is HQAC run) has a Facebook shop which has such items

customising becomes much more of a challenge. the embroider needs a “master image” of high enough quality to set up the sewing file - once on the system its fine but there are start up costs/effort required.
If HQAC went down this route i can imagine a Squadron badge would have to comply with some template and any that don’t meet the specs would be rejected forcing Squadrons to change it if they wanted to take advantage…

its a nice idea though


I didn’t know they had a facebook shop . . . couldn’t then do something a bit more official/professional as well? :wink:

I appreciate the machining costs etc which would have to be factored in to the cost of items to sqn’s. with regard to high quality badges, there is already policy in the works wrt badges gaining formal approval from the Inspectorate of RAF Badges, however I don’t see that policy getting actioned any time soon.


Thank you!!


@MattB You know full well what I mean … the cadet beret badge.
A very easily “logoised” item, even with a bit of leeway for design.
But that never happened maybe as in the early days of the Air Training Corps, there was a greater aspect of recruiting for military service, until National Service was abolished. When that happened the idea of have a proper brand/logo didn’t occur to them as no one in the armed forces had one. Now though we are fighting with a host of groups for youngsters, which could be enhanced with a proper Air Cadet specific logo, not RAF with Air Cadets written underneath it and a roundel. The last thing that suggests is a youth organisation, more like the RAF’s new recruits going through training.

@daws1159 God no, wouldn’t wear it either, we have squadron clothing that is as you say much more relevant.