Wearing of uniform by Retired Officers

Am I right in thinking that as a retired RAFAC Flt Lt I am entitled to wear my uniform on ceremonial occasions eg remembrance?

According to ACP20 PI 205 Para 22 you may retain your rank with (Retd) suffix as a courtesy title if you have 10 years of commissioned service. AP1358C Chapter 1 Para 0116 states that you may wear uniform to War Memorial services if retired and permitted to retain rank with permission obtained from WHQ.

So if you’ve got 10 years of commissioned service it’s all above board and you may wear uniform as a retired Flight Lieutenant (assuming you held the rank for at least 12 months). If you are eligible to retain rank HQ Pers should have confirmed in writing on your retirement.



Just to add. I dont have link to hand, but there was an ibn a while back confirming that Retd status was not contingent on VRT or CFC.
Both now allow Retd.
Assuming conditions above are met as per the stated req.

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Potentially silly question but what’s the point of retaining rank/acquiring the Ret’d status?

Admittedly I’m not a CFAV or served in the military but I would feel incredibly walty turning up to Remembrance Day etc in a uniform I’m no longer actively using as an ex/retired CFAV.


I think the IBN says you can only use the retired status/uniform in connection with cadet events. So if you’ve been invited to a mess dinner, or a prize evening etc. Happy to be corrected though as I don’t have access right now

How would said retired Flt Lt (Retd) know of the policy change given they cannot access said IBN or ACP???

Retired officers associations? (although I don’t know how many wings still have them)

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If when i get to 40 years uniformed cfav service and i have ‘retired’ but continue to be healthy enough to support the unit or rafac as a CI. I would not feel “walty” wearing my 5s once year at dining in night and 1s once a year at Remembrance. I would feel completly secure in the fact that long seevice such as that would entitle me to if i so wished.


Not quite, but the general idea was correct. The wording of the paragraph states “in an official capacity”. Copied below direct from the AP.

Wearing of Uniform by Retired RAFAC and RAFVR(T) Officers.
0116. Occasions when No 1 Service Dress may be worn. Retired officers, who are permitted to retain their rank may wear uniform on the following occasions with prior permission from OC Wg / Wg Ex O / Sqn Ldr CCF RAFAC HQ. Officers are to wear the insignia appropriate to when they retired. Officers who held both RAFAC and RAFVR(T) commissions have the option to revert to RAFVR(T) insignia along with the rank braid they held at that time.
a. When attending:
(1) Investitures and Royal Garden Parties.
(2) State ceremonial occasions.
(3) Parades in an official capacity, in connection with the celebration of the Sovereign’s birthday.
(4) Their own wedding or other military weddings when the sponsor requests the wearing of uniform.
(5) When attending formal Service functions.

b. When participating in an official capacity, in:
(1) Non-Service parades.
(2) War Memorial services and associated parades.

c. When inspecting or visiting:
(1) RAFAC units in an official capacity.
(2) Units of the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) on behalf of the Ministry of Defence or Reserve Forces Cadets Associations.
(3) Other uniformed youth organisation under a RAF Recognition Scheme.

d. When holding the appointment of Lord Lieutenant or Deputy Lord Lieutenant of a county, High Sheriff or Sheriff and discharging the duties of that appointment. appointment (Lieutenancy insignia may not be worn on RAF dress but entitled RAF flying badges may be worn on the Lieutenancy dress).

Which it would be as all retired officers are required to seek permission to attend events in uniform via the relevant WHQ beforehand. Official capacity could simply mean being present as supernumerary officer to any existing RAFAC commitment or, if necessary, being the sole RAFAC representative. Either way the CoC need to approve it, ergo it’s participating in an official capacity.


That’s it. If I was attending a parade and retired and taking the salute or parading with the cadet squadron or laying a wreath etc I would more than likely wear uniform. If I was just attending to watch the parade or walk with the veterans I would wear civilian clothing. That said, I have another 30 odd years before it’s an issue (hopefully).

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Apologies if this is a dumb post but…… why does a retired officer have to get permission to wear uniform in circumstances listed in the regs. AP 1358 does not mention this at all. Is this a RAFAC regulation only?

We are now on ACP1358…

I wouldn’t ask permission.
If im no longer in the Corps, who would i ask permission of.
What a rediculous statement for the org to make.

All falls under common accepted guidelines.

Remembrance and a dining in night - fine

Wearing to every social you go to - not.


But if invited to the event as ACM Jackson it would seem appropriate imo


…but then I would be outed as an imposter

I am surprised funerals isn’t metioned in that list when at a ‘military’ funeral (there is probably a better way of saying that!).
No good for me now …my Uniform I would suspect has shrunk considerably over the last few years! :smirk:

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I was just looking at the regulations shown in ACP1358 for the RAFAC & AP1358 which refers to retired regular, reserve and auxiliary officers. The permission issue only appears in the ACP as far as I know. Will retired RAFAC officers, who were never RAFVR(T) count as one or the other, or neither? Also I agree, if no longer in the organisation, who do you ask?

I would suspect that the ‘permission’ is an attempt to ensure that those who do choose to dress up again are legitamate in being allowed to ‘retain rank’
I seem to recall I got a very badly typed letter telling me I was entitled …but some will not receive!
…I guess they dont want the ‘left/dismissed under a cloud for any number of reasons’ etc etc representing the Cadets?
And in most cases I would have thought the host (If still in service) should ask for the permission on behalf of the Ret’d officer.

Yes, it’s also a courtesy given to the organising formation. At our local parades we often have ex members of the unit attend. Some are retired officers others are currently serving in both regulars and reserves. They all formally ask permission to attend in uniform and in some cases for serving personnel it has to be confirmed via their CoC too. For retired officers we inform WHQ as a courtesy that they will be attending.


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Agree with you MB.

Admittedly I’m not an officer, just a scummy other rank, but every time I parade formally with my ATC unit as an SI I am required to inform my CoC for permission.

I’m also technically meant to have a brief by RAFP for local security measures…

Doesn’t apply to regular parade nights but formal parades such as Remembrance Sunday.

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