RAF Air Cadets Celebrate 75 Years During Coventry Cathedral Service


W&B 121_IMG_6681Royal Air Force Air Cadets from Squadrons throughout the Warwickshire & Birmingham Wing marked the start of their 75th Anniversary year with a service at Coventry Cathedral.

The Coventry Cathedral service on Sunday 7th February was held to mark the formation of the Air Training Corps, which was established under royal warrant on the 5th February 1941.

The service led by Reverend Canon David Stone, Sub-Dean of Coventry Cathedral and the Warwickshire & Birmingham Wing Padre, Father Neil Bayliss began with the sounding of the Coventry Peace Bell. The bell rang out to herald the start of the colourful procession of Banners, each representing one the different Squadrons that form the Warwickshire & Birmingham Wing as they marched from the Queen’s Steps into the Cathedral.

The procession included the Banners of 1459 (Heart of England) and 2504 (Archbishop Grimshaw) Squadrons which were being paraded for the final time before the two Squadrons merge to become 2371 Squadron. As a mark of respect the Banners of 1459 and 2504 were received into the Cathedral and were given pride of place on the Drum Head Altar

During the wonderful service the Air Cadets all reaffirmed their Air Cadet promise and the Padre reflected on the comradeship and family spirit fostered within individual Squadrons and throughout the Corps during the last 75 years.

The service concluded as the Wing Banner party retrieved the Wing Banner from the Altar and proudly leading the procession of Squadron Banners from the Cathedral.

Following the service, Wing Commander, Stuart Iles Officer Commanding Warwickshire & Birmingham Wing said, “The service was a huge success and a wonderful way to mark the start the 75th Anniversary year of the Air Training Corps. It was so good to see so many cadets and staff from all over the wing on parade to support what is undoubtedly one of the most important occasions in our 2016 calendar”.