Previous Page Royal Air Force Apprentice history (page 2) Next Page

Nick' Carter qualified as a pilot and was awarded the DFC. Later for his work in CENTO, he was made a Companion of the Bath. On retirement from the RAF he moved to Australia, selling property in Western Australia, quickly selected to be Commandant of the Civil Defence School in South Australia. He next became the first Director of the Australian Counter- Disaster College. On retirement at age 65, he set up his own consultancy, advising South Asian and Pacific countries, as well as the UN, and produced A Disaster Manager’s Handbook, still the basic guide. He remained active throughout his life, and died in Australia aged 87. Coincidentally, or is it, of the 11 Commanding Officers of the later Administrative Apprentice Training Schools, no fewer than 4 of them were ex-Ruislipians, however, it must be noted that the very first Commanding Officer, Wing Commander D A Reddick, OBE, DFC, was an ex-Halton Aircraft Apprentice. This 'quality checking process' continued when two ex-Ruislip Apprentice Clerks, Air Commodore A P Vicary (then AOC RAF Record Office), and Air Commodore M C M Vau, were Reviewing Officers at the Administrative Apprentice Pass-Out Parades of the 318th and 322th Entries respectively.

To summarise the efficacy of apprentice training, the following statistics are offered: 3% of apprentice clerks were commissioned, four reaching air rank; 16 reaching Group Captain; 51% reached WO/SNCO rank; 21% were selected for aircrew duties; and 15% received honours and awards.

Following the success of the RAF Ruislip Apprentice Clerk Scheme that operated between 1925 and 1942, it was deemed logical to commence a similar scheme post- war. Accordingly the training of the newly-titled RAF Administrative Apprentices began in 1947 at Royal Air Force St Athan. With the increase in the school leaving-age, and following a review of the training that future apprentices would require, the syllabi were considerably revised and the Course length reduced to 12 months.

Another change was in the numbering of Entries which had previously run from Nos. 1 - 46. Now the revised Entry numbers started at No. 301 and continued consecutively up to No. 320 then followed Entries numbered 322, 324, 326, with the final Entry being No. 330.

Individual Entries in the '300' block had more apprentices than in any of the previous 46 Entries, with the 330th, the final Entry, peaking at 165 apprentices.