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Thread: Elementary Flying Training 1939

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    Default Elementary Flying Training 1939

    I have a sevice record that shows that initial training was started at No 7 Elementary Flying Training School at RAF Desford in July 1939. It appears to have been a 7 or 8 week course. Sturtivant's 'Flying Training and support Units' tells that the unit had one each of Tiger Moth/Anson/Audax/Hart/Hind. Can anyone tell me if they would have had these aircraft in 1939 and if the students would get flying experience of all of them?

    The person concerned was commissioned at the end of the course. While on the course would he be classed as a cadet?

    He was then posted to No 3 Initial Training Wing at the Marine Court Hotel, St Leonards on Sea for about 2 weeks before being posted to a flying training school. Am I right in thinking that his time at St Leonards would be learning to be an officer/basic drill/how to hold his knife and fork etc?

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    My copy of Sturtivant (2007) p.102 only states Tiger Moth, with Magister in support. They would have had more than one Tiger Moth. Aircraft such as the Audax, Hart and Hind were used for more advanced training.

    However, p.107 describes the previous unit at Desford as No.7 Elementary and Reserve Flying Training School, with the aircraft described above. These are only quoted as examples not as the entire stock. The heavier types will have been in use with the Reserve part of the school.

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    Thanks for your reply Graham. Page 102 refers to September 1939 onwards. My interest is in July 1939 which is, as you say, referred to on page 107 or in my version, page 105. However, I take your point that the aircraft used for training would mainly be the Tiger Moth.

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    Actually, it's p105 in my edition too!

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    "The person concerned was commissioned at the end of the course. While on the course would he be classed as a cadet?"

    Pre-war pilot trainees at E&RFTS were 'Mr'. If they passed the course they could then be appointed to a commission. If they failed they either returned to civilian life or, in some cases, joined the RAF in some other capacity.

    Errol

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    Thanks Errol.

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