From time-to-time we receive contact from ex-cadets who find our Website or Facebook site. Here is a recent email we received from ex-cadet David Davies who became a space Physicist and who may be flying down to see us this year!
Dave Davies ex-cadet
I was so pleased to see your website!
I was one of the original flight of cadets who moved into the old hangar at Tollerton in, I think 1964. I moved down to Harpenden in 1968 and became a sergeant in 220 Sqn (detatched flight from St Albans. Cats Eyes Cunningham was one of our patrons there). My friend and I (Dougie Daft) lived in Keyworth and used to walk to the airfield every cadet night, quite happily.
I remember at Tollerton, flying in a Dragon Rapide as a reward after an airshow where we had helped with the parking, very proudly in our uniforms. There was lots of chipmunk flying at RAF Newton on camp, and locally as well. We used to go to RAF Cottesmore for that I think. Best memories were of gliding in Kirkby Cadets and occasionally Sedburghs at RAF Spittlegate. I went solo there when I was 16 in 1968. We were only allowed to fly circuits off the winch, no such thing as thermalling! We also used to fly diesel and glow-plug models on the airfield. And I remember the shoulder pain of having fired 50 rounds in an afternoon with the old Lee Enfield 303’s. Got my RAF marksman badge tho’! on 25 and 200 yds ranges.
Later on I did a lot of gliding in Holland and a bit at Dunstable and in Perth in WA. Got a PPL in WA and am still current! After many years off. I am flying a lot again, and came across Tollerton again because I was thinking of flying down from Aberdeen later on this year.
Unfortunately I never joined the RAF, which was my great ambition at the time, I’m afraid girls and the sixties stopped me. But I became a Space Physicist and worked on the Ariel 3 and 4 space programmes, before deserting to become a geophysicist. That has taken me round the world a few times since those halcyon days at Tollerton!
Anything I can do to help, anything, let me know.