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Air Cadets

Volume 974: debated on Tuesday 27 November 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence how many air cadets have been trained to first solo proficiency standard in air cadet gliders during the last ten years.

I thank my hon Friend for that reply. I should like him to note that many of these boys were assessed as having an above-average aptitude for flying and are, therefore, a prime source of future RAF pilots. Much concern is felt among members of the RAF Voluntary Reserve, who trained these boys, because the principal airfield used by them—

Is my hon. Friend aware that the airfield which is being used by air cadets in the central gliding unit is better used for that purpose than for the training of dogs?

I note what my hon. Friend says, and I reassure him that the tremendous contribution made by the air cadets is well appreciated by the Royal Air Force. I shall examine the matter and see that the contribution is not further reduced.

While on the subject of flying training for air cadets, may I ask my hon. Friend to look into the operation of the flying scholarship scheme? The present allotment of 30 hours is five hours short of the time required for a private pilot's licence at the Civil Aviation Authority approved flying training schools.