Are you up for fun, adventure, incredible experiences and making new
friends? Are you looking for something to give you the edge in life?
Then welcome to the Air Cadet Organisation (ACO). Better known as the
'Air Cadets', we’re a UK-wide cadet force with more than 40,000 members
aged between 13 and 20 years.
We're sponsored by the Royal Air
Force and can give you hands-on experience of activities and courses
that will challenge and develop your skills to help you succeed in
whatever you want to do.
The ACO is made up of two areas:
Training Corps - The ATC is the RAF's cadet force, divided into six
regions, 36 wings and more than 900 squadrons within communities around
- Combined Cadet Force (RAF) - The CCF (RAF) is our
section of the CCF which is made up of cadets from all three services,
coming together in approximately 200 independent and state schools
across the country
Our aims are to:
- Promote and encourage a practical interest in aviation and the Royal Air Force among young people
- Provide training which will be useful in the Services and civilian life
- Encourage the spirit of adventure and develop qualities of leadership and good citizenship
And there's one more important thing - it's a lot of fun!
Get out and get active
Cadet life is about learning through practical experience, especially in the great outdoors! Here's a taster of what's in store:
- Camping - Work on your survival skills and learn your strengths in a team.
- Easter/summer camps - As you advance in rank you can take part in these popular camps held at RAF stations around the UK.
- Overseas camps
- Spend 10 days in Cyprus with fantastic weather, swimming, sailing,
and maybe even see the Red Arrows practise their displays (they train
there). Head to Germany where you'll visit a city or cemetery from the
First and Second World Wars. You may even get to fly in helicopters -
another exciting possibility for cadets.
- Adventurous training
- A huge part of cadet training. We have two centres, at Windermere in
the Lake District and Llanbedr in coastal Wales, both with stunning
scenery. Rock climbing, abseiling, high-level hill walking,
mountain-biking, canoeing, high rope work and sailing are all par for
Flying is central to our purpose and your cadet experience. You'll have loads of opportunities to take to the skies:
- Soar to success! There are fantastic opportunities to glide while you
are a cadet, with the ultimate goal being a solo flight. Training is in
three stages: a Gliding Induction Course (GIC), Gliding Scholarship
(GS) and Advanced Gliding Training (AGT).
- Air Experience Flights
- Feel the thrill of powered flight, with a fully qualified pilot to
guide you through taking control of the aircraft yourself. Not only have
the opportunity to learn about the flying controls but you’ll
experience aerobatics and low level flying too.
- Air Cadet Pilot Scheme
- The pinnacle of flying as a cadet, for advanced handling. Complete
this successfully and you'll be awarded your cadet pilot wings. And if
you do exceptionally well you could be recommended for further training
which will help towards your Private Pilot's Licence!
- Air Cadet Pilot Navigation Training Scheme
- A great opportunity to use your navigation skills, this two-week
course where you fly for up to eight hours is open to selected cadets.
Success will lead to you gaining your 'wings'.