The 330th Entry of Clerk Secs got together for its 35 year reunion on Saturday 8th September 2007. Taking place in the Sergeant’s Mess at Innsworth, it was attended by over 30 ex apprentices and many brought wives and partners. We also had the great pleasure of the company of our ex Drill Instructor Dave Russell and ex Trade Instructor Frank Hubber. Another special guest was our Pass Out Parade Commander Keith Appleyard. A good night was had by all recalling story after story of 330 times at Hereford as if it was not that long ago. The welcome speech was made by our Master Of Ceremonies Andy Sperring who stood on a table so he could be seen by all! Apologies were received from others who could not attend but hope to be at the next reunion in 2012.
330 Supply Administrative Apprentice Reunion RAF Halton Tuesday 2 November 2010
Report And Pictures By John Mc Cormick
Thirty eight years after joining at RAF Hereford, in 1972, as the last boy apprentices, 330 Entry had their first reunion. This took place at RAF Halton as guests of the Supply and Movements Training Wing.
The itinerary for the day included an initial get together in the Wing’s tea bar allowing the old boys to meet and greet each other and re-acquaint themselves under the welcoming support of our very own Eddie Goodstadt the Warrant Officer in charge of the training school.
The group had been invited, as VIP guests, to the passing out parade of N0: 443 Graduating Course – Beckett Intake which was a privilege and brought back wonderful memories of the hours we spent square bashing under the kindness of our drill instructors Sgt. Eddie Rudge and Cpl Johnny Coombes. The entire group was very impressed at the turn out and standard of drill exhibited by the basic trainees.
It was compared favourably to our own although they only had 10 weeks in training unlike our year spent at Hereford although we did include basic training and trade training in that year.
After the passing out parade we adjourned to the RAF Halton Trenchard Apprentice Museum and took a walk back in time finding ourselves surrounded by bed packs, hairy number 2 uniforms and glassy centre decks and bumpers. Wonderful memories of our basic training were experienced and the jokes and reminiscences flowed. We would recommend a visit to any ex apprentice. This museum that portrays life back in basic training is run by an exceptional group of volunteers.
Upon leaving the museum we returned to the Wing Tea bar for refreshments and to relive some old stories as well as viewing the photographic records held on the Wing which included memoirs of us, and many old friends, who had attended one of the numerous trade or promotion courses at Hereford.
Next, Eddie Goodstadt received a presentation from his Wing Commander that had been secretly arranged beforehand. He was presented with a Certificate of Recognition of the fact that he will be the last 330 apprentice, and therefore the last Supply Administrative Apprentice, serving in the Royal Air Force on the date of his discharge on the 2 March 2011.
Presentation over, the group were shown around the current Supply and Movements Training School and were highly impressed with both the set up and progress since the days of the Model Store in the training hangar at Hereford.
Next came the visit to the Supply Museum and a trip back in time to the first day we arrived at our new units, KAMM machines, punch paper tape, 1640’s and many other forms and equipment we had all trained on and used for the first few years of our careers. A must see for any other supply apprentices who read this – just ring the wing admin officer who will be pleased to arrange a visit for you.
With the day drawing to a close we had our final cup of tea and’ bickies’ in the crew room (old habits die hard) and then it was time to book into the Holiday Inn for a quick change before gathering in the bar ready for the evening function.
Here we were joined by Barry Henderson for the evening meal and the next few hours were filled with recalling the antics and trouble we all got into during our year at Hereford. Our glasses were raised to absent colleagues and Eddie Rudge was toasted amid various impressions of him which became the nucleus of many a story.
Many many thanks are owed to Eddie and all his staff for making the day so memorable and for looking after us so well. Due to the success and enjoyment of the day it was decided agreed that we should attempt to arrange another reunion in two years time. Details of this reunion and contact emails for members of the group can be obtained from John McCormick at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Having tried for over ten years to get a reunion organised and being thwarted by many obstacles it was a great feeling to see it come to fruition and to again meet up with some of the extraordinary people who I was fortunate to spend a year of my life with during our 330 apprentice entry at Hereford. I am already looking forward to seeing them again alongside some ‘new’ old faces at the next reunion in 2012.
REUNION OF 330 ENTRY 2002