Here is Sgt Mike Cross’s report on a recent visit to an ex Cadet in the RAF.
“On Wednesday 6th Jul Sqn Ldr Day, Cdt Daniel Smith and myself visited RAF Wittering in Cambridgeshire. Both Dan and I have been raring to join the Air Force since joining the Corps. We were hosted by Flt Lt. Chris Pearson who was an ex cadet who is currently in training on Harriers at the station. Our day started at 0530 with a 2 hour trip up to Peterborough. Once we arrived we were escorted into the crew room to meet the CO of the squadron and then we moved straight on into the morning MET brief, which covered everything from the weather in Scotland to the latest events happening in the Gulf. After that we watched some brilliant footage of Chris landing in specially made forests and pads all over the base and watched him flying over the bombing ranges in Norfolk. He only has 4 minutes after take off to do all his checks, navigate there, check that his equipment is constantly working, talk to the other aircraft and select which weapon system to use for his first attack. All whilst flying at 600 mph! We then planned a sortie on a water tower in the middle of Cambridge using huge computers and satellite imagery. After all that we were escorted to the hangar past the roar of Harriers taxiing, hovering and taking off. We each sat in the aircraft and Chris showed us how all the equipment in the aircraft worked including the heat seeking camera, navigation systems and weaponry selection. The day finished on a high with lunch in the officer’s mess. A first for 241! Just as we got back to the crew room Chris was told he was off to the bombing ranges at 1500 and had to prepare his flight. All in all a brilliant day that I am sure the 3 of us with never forget”.