Why did you join the Air Cadets?

So why did you join the ATC as a cadet/staff member and not the ACF/SCC/Scouts/Guides etc?

It was so long ago I can’t remember…

That makes me sad :frowning:

I read “Boy & Flying Solo” by Rhold Dahl. As a result of this book I decided that decided my calling in life was to shoot down Jerry from a Spitfire. The ATC was the start.

It only took a couple of parade nights to discover the RAF no longer flew Spitfires in anger or even shot down Jerry! Nethertheless, I enjoyed marching around and geeking over planes so I stayed.

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I was a cub and a scout back in the day but I left when my mates left.

I joined the ATC as staff because I’m an ex RAF-brat and I like guns and aircraft. I thought it might be fun.

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The most predictable answer you can get… I wanted to be a pilot in the Airforce.

I even stopped my older sister joining when she was 13 because I wanted it to be “my thing” - I was only 9 at the time!

Stayed on as staff because I have the time, I enjoy the like minded company and challenges and it gives me something to do. Working 7days on 7 days off gets quite boring after a while!

For the soft women and tasty beds.

And because the Womens Auxilliary Baloon Corps wouldn’t take you? :wink:

I was in the Cubs and Scouts. Joined the ATC cause a mate at school was asking others if they would join the sqn as well. 6 years later he’s left ages ago, i’m a CWO and also an Assistant Cub Scout Leader.
Joined because of the activities the cadets could offer.

Soft beds and tasty women sounds better to me :mrgreen:
I joined because I always wanted to fly, typical I know.

I joined because I wanted to follow in my step-grandad’s footsteps and be in the RAF. I still have his original beret from WW2!

I realised after a while that flying wasn’t the career for me, and soon after that I probably wouldn’t join the RAF at all. Decided to stick around and now I’m here!

I joined because my mates from school were in and they said it was fun and they did shooting. There is a range on the sqn and we went shooting lots. Didn’t even know about the flying.

Been in the cadets ever since except when I was in uni.

A friend of mine was in, and said he had built a wind tunnel!
I was scarred stiff of flying and didn’t fly until I was a Cpl.
…ended up as an OC of a VGS…funny how these things happen:)

i was a Beaver, Cub and Scout and was “held back” waiting for enough Scouts to move up to reform the disbanded Ventures

at that time three “mates” (not close friends) at school approached me to attend the open day, i can only presume as they knew i had the right mind set/attitude I would fit in at Sqn.
they all got very persuasive, mild harassment making sure I would turn up (I later found out there was a competition run who could bring in the most recruits) it became impossible to even err at answering if I would turn up.
I went along knowing it would be easier than facing the backlash of not turning up and seeing them in school the next day.

I was one of 15 new recruits, forming our own specific “Training flight” within the first few month prior to enrolment we had lost 5 or so. The three “mates” were all Cpls (I was 15 when I joined) and ironically had all but left within a year.
Within 3 years I was one of three of that original 15 that joined, and by the time I returned from my first year at university was very much the only one left with now an even larger age gap between me and the next eldest Cadet.
I continued until I aged out (at 20) missing out on CWO, but being invited to become a staff member…8 years later I am still here, after a failed application to the RAF (medically unfit), graduating university and moving around the Country, I maintained my ATC links throughout and as of yet nothing has put me off enough to stop!

Why did I stick around in the first place?
I have offered wondered this, particularly as an “old recruit” all of my immediate peer group were NCOs when I joined, resulting in an odd dynamic for me grouped with those much younger.
However having come from a disorganised, undisciplined Scout troop to a well-managed, disciplined environment of the ATC I instantly loved it. I had no previous wishes to join up, but flying was a big draw for me and was keen to make the most of the opportunities.

Back as a CI after leaving as a cadet in 1977.

A squadron had a pile of radios and no-one to look after the poor things.

I joined because I wanted to be an RAF pilot. Flying and learning about RAF type things attracted me; shooting, living in tents and wearing green stuff not so much. The latter still applies. I keep WHT current but that’s about it!

Either way, it can’t have been bad, as almost exactly 18 years after I joined the ATC, I’m a second tourist now occasionally flying ATC cadets with an AEF (serviceable aeroplanes permitting!).

A friend of mine in school one day was talking about what we were going to do when we’re older. I hadn’t the foggiest clue but he said he wanted to become a civilian pilot. I simply nodded at the time and carried on with the lesson but the conversation stuck in my head and I decided that being a pilot would definitely be very cool. I researched about being a civilian pilot, and mostly learnt it cost a lot of money unless you’re ex-RAF, where you can do a few tests and then you can go civvie (this was my understanding of it at the time, I know that’s not strictly true). Not being a part of the richest family in the world, I decided this was probably the best course of action.

I researched more about the RAF and learnt about the Air Cadets, thought it’d look good when I came to apply, and joined a week before my 16th birthday. Shortly after then I decided that being civvie pilot could be quite boring in comparison to staying in the RAF, so starting focussing on a more permanent career with the military.

Still working on that now. I suggested joining the ATC to the aforementioned friend, since he wanted to be a pilot too, but he said it sounded a bit “gay”. His loss. He’s now on benefits with 2 kids at the age of 21.

I was forced to by my mum. She refused to support my ambition of becoming a pilot otherwise. I thought it was a terrible idea.

I’m still here.

Joined as a cadet in 1996 while in Germany (old man was army) he got posted later that year to Colchester joined the sqn there with the goal of joining the RAF which I did in 2001 left the RAF in 2011 got bored and joined as a CI

the Scouts in my (new) town were both pretty rubbish and a bit formal for my taste, the council run youth club was home to two, now convicted, paedophiles, and the other cadet organisations barely existed.

i certainly fancied a military career, but i was 13, i fancied most things - the ATC did stuff (i got enrolled, passed my 1st class and went to camp at RAF Brawdy the next week), and it wasn’t just full of the same people i saw at school.

it was a way out of the most boring home in the most boring town in the most boring county in the UK that did not involve me selling my lithe young body in the less salubrious areas of late 80’s Bristol - and for that i am eternally grateful…

I was new to the area, I joined wanting something positive to do in my spare time, plus make some new friends. I had a terrible time as a recruit; Most of my friends had left, I was a mess. I stayed hopeing that going through recruitment and reaching first class would pay off. I am here 2 1/2 years later hopeing my sqn will recover from suspension. I think it payed off. :side: