Welcome to all Old Haltonians
This network provides a forum to enable all ex-apprentices, who trained at RAF Halton, to communicate. The Old Haltonians social network is open to ALL Apprentices who 'did time' at RAF Halton as a member of one the Entries detailed on the http://www.oldhaltonians.co.uk web site. The Entry listing on that site commences with the 29th Entry and runs through to the 410th Entry. 155th were the last entry to pass out (in 1993). Officially, Richie Waylens is the last brat to pass out of Halton.
The RAF Aircraft Apprentice Scheme was initiated by Lord Trenchard at the No.1 School of Technical Training, RAF Halton in 1922. Lord Trenchard started the 'Aircraft Apprentice Scheme' in 1920 at Halton camp, but the site was not ready to accept apprentices until 1922 (See Tribute). The first few Entries were sent to 'RAF Cranwell' and the first HALTON Entry was the 5th Entry in 1922. Between 1922 and 1993, when the scheme ended, over 40,000 young men known, more or less affectionately as Halton or Trenchard 'Brats', had graduated.
The Government had purchased the Halton estate (previously commandeered during the First World War) on Trenchard's recommendation when Rothschild died in 1918. There were already ample and well-equipped technical shops in existence and it was near to London, a point in its favour since the Chief of the Air Staff believed that the boy trainees should be near enough for friends and parents to visit. On the other hand, Trenchard felt that officer cadets would be better off in the flat countryside of Lincolnshire than anywhere near London.
The badge of No 1 School of Technical Training incorporates a symbolic tree of learning derived from the beech trees typical of the Halton area. The motto "Crescentes Discimus" can be translated to mean ‘As we grow, we learn’. In planning the Apprenticeship Scheme, the Air Ministry clearly took their responsibilities towards the young boys seriously and it was considered necessary to provide some insignia to distinguish them from adult airmen "so as to check smoking and the forgathering of boys with men".
The four-bladed propeller within a circlet, to be manufactured in brass, was approved on 17th April 1919 and worn on the sleeve of the left arm, being, of course, highly polished at all times.
See pages 28 - 35 of the pdf file sota_vol1_2 .pdf for a good account of the start of the HAA scheme. The article is written by, Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Armitage KCB CBE (56th entry), who is a member of this Network.
A history of the culture and organisational heritage of the RAF can be found at this link HistoryoftheRAF.pdf
NOTE:- Acrobat Reader is needed to read pdf files. Acrobat Reader can be downloaded free of charge from the SAFE LINK TO ACROBAT READER DOWNLOAD
In July 1952 the uncrowned Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth performed one of her first duties as Soverign by presenting to Number 1 School of Technical Training RAF Halton a colour. The first to be awarded to an apprentice school, and the first ever to be presented to an 'other' rank, when Sergeant Apprentice Hines of the 63rd Entry, received the colour from Her Majesty.
On 31 October 1997 Her Majesty presented RAF Halton with its own colour.
I was lucky enough to work on these in 1968 at 115 squadron at Watton and Cottesmore. I say 'lucky' because I was an engine fitter (or A.Fitt.P as they called it) and it gave me a wonderful (and oily) experience into what had been normal in the 'old…Continue
"Stuart, you may want to put this photo on the site of our oldest living member. Richard Martin who was in the 1st Halton Entry in Jan 1922 is now 103 and still ackling. Min" (12 January 2010)With all due respect to Fallen Comrades, longevity seems…Continue
I see that the BBC Archives now contain the footage of Churchill's funeral. Richard Dimbleby is the commentator during the many hours of broadcasting. From time to time he draws attention to the Royal Air Force Apprentices, both those escorting the…Continue
Anyone who is a RAFA member (or who joins) and has moved/is moving to the Salisbury area, we would like to see them at our Branch meetings and social gatherings/visits.
Contact details/programme here:-…Continue