Featured Image Above – The RAF Commemorative Medal Introduced In 2020
This page contains galleries of images (photographs and documents) and other memorabelia from our historical archives, collected over many years and classified as General Archives. Where possible images have been identified and labelled. Much of the material will of course mention individuals or entries, but nevertheless we feel it will be of interest to all association members irrespective of their entry. If you are able to provide us with additional material for this section of the website please contact the website manager at email@example.com
2nd July 2023
The image below together with the caption text was provided by Terry Waine (35th)
To View Entry Specific Archives Click Here.
Extracts From Winter 1960 Edition Of ‘The Apprentice’ – Courtesy of Pete ‘Ossie’ Osbourne 36th Entry
A collection images from the RAF Hereford Magazine 1966 provided by Dave Miller (302nd Entry). Edited by Steve Day (304th).
Our records show that he following Administrative Apprentices achieved Group Captain rank or above. However this list is not necessarily totally accurate and if you know of any others please let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org
|John Pack||5th Entry|
|William Brice||33rd Entry|
|Keith Edwards||29th Entry|
|John Featherstone||38th Entry|
|David Goucher||21st Entry|
|Peter Hall||33rd Entry|
|Ian Hendley||42nd Entry|
|Reginald Holman||17th Entry|
|Raymond Innes||315th Entry|
|Donald Mortlock||19th Entry|
|Clive Moore||36th Entry|
|Ray Neeves||6th Entry|
|Christopher Rowe||38th Entry|
|Robert Slater||43rd Entry|
|David Smith||19th Entry|
|Ian Smith||37th Entry|
|David Valentine||17th Entry|
|David Turner||20th Entry|
From:- Wing Commander D.S. Cartwright-Terry, R.A.F.
Administrative Apprentice Training School
Royal Air Force,
Norfolk 10th May, 1962
Dear Mr & Mrs ******,
I am sure that your son has now written to tell you his first impressions of the Administrative Apprentice Training School at Royal Air Force Bircham Newton.The object of the school is to train apprentices to the advanced level in an R.A.F. trade and to give them additional general education to fit them for a progressive career in the Royal Air Force. We also pay considerable attention to the further development of character and do our best to foster integrity and willing acceptance of individual and communal responsibility; during the period the boys are at the school.
The Apprentice Training School is run very much on the lines of an ordinary boarding school, but with a military flavour. Under the supervision of my staff, carefully selected senior boys are given responsibility towards the younger ones. Each apprentice is considered for one of these posts of responsibility towards the end of his first year at the school.
Your son is now a member of 46 Entry, and for the first few weeks at Bircham Newton, until he has received all his kit and uniform, he will stay with the other apprentices who arrived at the same time. They are all under the care and guidance of an experienced officer and several of our most reliable senior apprentices. At this stage we frequently find that boys who are not accustomed to being away from home become somewhat homesick. This is quite natural and. we endeavour to do all we can to overcome this feeling and try to ensure that they settle down as quickly as possible When your son is fully kitted he will begin his formal trade training. This is carried out by experienced instructors under the guidance of a specia1ist officer. Considerable time is devoted to educational teaching and I have a staff of experienced university graduate school teachers to do the job. When your son has passed his final educational examination he will be eligible for awards from the Royal Society of Arts.
Apprentices are given generous leave ‘while they are at Bircham Newton, which is arranged to coincide as far as possible with normal school holiday periods, We are also able to arrange mid-term breaks of a few days during the middle of our terms, At holiday time all our apprentices are expected to go home and are not allowed to go to any other address unless we have your written consent.
The pay of apprentices, particularly in the latter stages of their training, is quite generous and we take definite steps to encourage thrift. A Post Office Savings Bank account is opened for each apprentice soon after he arrives. His deposit book is held by the House Commander and except for very special reasons it is not returned to the apprentice until completion of his training. At this stage each young man should have a substantial sum to his credit when he leaves the school to take up his new post. In addition we withhold a small portion of his pay each week until he goes on leave when he will draw an accumulated sum which we expect will be sufficient for his needs on holiday.
Apprentices over the age of 16 are allowed to smoke provided the parents do not object. Therefore a smoking pass will be granted to your son provided he is over 16, and also provided you give your written approval. I must add that we do not encourage over indulgence in smoking, which we believe is not in the interests of health and physical fitness.
We find that co-operation between parents and the school staff plays a very important part in training’ and I hope that if any problems do arise you will not hesitate to let me know. We like to keep parents notified of the progress of the sons and my Chief Instructor will send you reports at the end of the first three of the five phases of training. If there is anything else you wish to know please do not hesitate to write to me.
I am enclosing a letter about our Open Day on May 23rd, which has already been sent to parents of the other apprentices. I should be delighted if you are able to come and will be grateful if you will fill in the attached paper and return it to my Adjutant as soon as possible.
On Sunday 10th April 2005 there was a service of dedication of a stained glass window to commemorate RAF Apprentice Clerks 1925-1942 and RAF Administrative Apprentices 1947-1973
To read the complete booklet containing the service and the history of both schemes click the link below:
Our thanks to Allan Du Feu (33rd Entry) for providing the course programmes outlined below.
RAF Hereford – First Term Programme – 33rd Entry – 22nd January To 3rd April 1958
Note: Monday periods 1, 2, 7,8 and 9 and Tuesday periods 1 and 2 were probably course commanders disposal, uniform fitting, jabs etc. I am not sure what HSD was, possibly House Sergeant’s Disposal.
RAF Hereford 2nd Term Programme – 33rd Entry – 14th April To 31st July 1958
|Monday||Trade||Trade||Trade||General Studies||D of E||Trade||Trade||Trade|
I am not sure what HMD was, possibly House Master’s Disposal. D of E, no idea.
RAF Hereford Third Term Programme – 33rd Entry – 25th August To 18th December 1958
RAF Hereford Fourth Term Programme – 33rd Entry – 5th January To 26th March 1959