Sgt Bearcroft - Flying scholarship

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I was very fortunate to be given a prestige Air Cadet Flying Scholarship which started on the 8th August until the 15th August 2012. Receiving 11hrs of Flying.

When I first arrived at RAF Cosford on the Sunday evening I found my accommodation and met the people who were doing different course, a navigation scholarship alongside me. When we were picked up from outside the mess at 08.30hrs it transpired that to the harness quick release fitting had failed on a tutor elsewhere in the fleet, which had meant that for safety reasons the entire tutor fleet had been grounded. Once the problem had been sorted out and a solution was found the aircraft were allowed to fly once again. As you can imagine safety is very important. Unfortunately this fault wasn’t fixed until the following Wednesday which meant we didn’t fly for a week and a half. So we kept up-to-date with the Olympics Games on the telly.

The first flight was on the Wednesday and was a simple fly around the local area and aircraft familiarisation flight. After that we had another flight which was a demonstration of turns and the effects of controls, which involved the start-up, taxy and take-off as well as a look at all of the major controls.

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On the Thursday we flew some circuit exercises which are important for landings.

On the Friday we did circuits as well as medium turns and more touch ’n’ go’s (Landings and Take Off’s).

On the Saturday I went to the civilian flying club, on the station, and managed to get myself some free civilian flying, which was very nice of the club as it helped with my training.

On the Sunday I went to No.633 Volunteer Gliding Squadron which was very enjoyable because I am a Flight Staff Cadet myself, at No.614 VGS at MDPGA Wethersfield in Essex. This was very interesting as I was able to compare our different operations.

On the Monday it was instrument flying which is where you ignore the outside world and fly the aircraft using the instruments alone, which was very interesting as I was not allowed to look outside. I can be very disorientating and you have to trust the instruments.

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On Tuesday we flew a navigation route that had three turning points on it. This was a very enjoyable flight because we did a bit of sight-seeing around the local area whilst improving my navigation skills. After this flight we landed and then went off to do some very steep angle of attack turns which is where 45 and 60 degree turns. This was immensely fun as we pulled a lot of g’s.

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On Thursday we did a navigational route down to Colerne Airfield which is near Bristol. This was a long flight which lasted about 1 hour and 10 minutes down there. Once there my Pilot had a lesson with another instructor, which renewed his aerobatics qualification. On the return we took a slightly different route back to RAF Cosford so that we had to look for different reference points. When we were near to RAF Cosford and could see the airfield my instructor gave me an aerobatics lesson, which was absolutely brilliant !!!

Air Cadet Pilot Wings

I passed the course with a very complementary write up and will hopefully be receiving my ‘Wing’s’ for my uniform very soon.


Sergeant Chris Bearcroft


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