1406 Stamford Squadron

Welcome to
1406 Spalding Squadron
Royal Air Force Air Cadets

Parade Nights
Every Tuesday at 7.00pm - 9.30pm
Every Thursday at 7.00pm - 9.30pm



Flying and gliding

Being in the Air Cadets opens up lots of opportunities when it comes to chances to fly! We like to get you airborne either as a passenger in a light aircraft, a glider or even on-board RAF operational aircraft as often as we can.

Air Experience Flights

Air Experience Flight (AEF) is your chance to get flying, at one of 12 AEF’s around the country, we fly out of RAF Cranwell, with pilots who are all current or former RAF service pilots.

You’ll be shown how the aircraft flies and given the chance to take control yourself.

The History

Once you’ve experienced your first flight you’ll join a long list going back over 50 years – the first AEF’s were formed in 1958 and flew the DeHavilland Chipmunk for 40 years, replaced by the Scottish Aviation Bulldog, which helped train many RAF pilots too.

We now fly the Grob Tutor (picture bottom right), with great visibility and agility to perform full aerobatics; you’ll experience flight and want more!

Just take a look at this diagram of the Tutor cockpit!

(click me)

The aircraft

Flying is an amazing experience and one of the main reasons cadets have joined for many years. Just imagine floating on thermal currents solo in a glider or taking control of a single engine light aircraft. We have aircraft which will make your first and every flight to totally exhilarating. They are part of the cadet experience, help you understand training, be confident and if you’re ready even go solo!

The Viking T1 (top)

The Grob G103A Twin II Acro – better known as the Viking T1 – a modern, high performance two-seat glider. The Viking gets airborne via a winch-launch – a cool experience in its own right. The height you reach depends on wind strength at the time, but normally lasts around 5 minutes. In warmer months the pilot can use thermals (warm rising air) to stay aloft for longer periods of time – circling to gain height.

The Vigilant T1 (middle) – now ceased from active flying.

The Grob G109B, or Vigilant T1, is the best of both worlds, it’s a motor glider with an engine and propeller, so can launch itself like a normal powered aircraft but flown as a glider. The engine isn’t powerful enough for aerobatics or for rapid climbing but Vigilant is an agile aircraft, capable of soaring in thermals under the right conditions. Instead of being seated in front or behind your instructor like in the Viking, the Vigilant seats two, side-by-side. As it can take off and land under its own steam, flights last much longer too – usually 45 minutes.


Flying and gliding – courses

Gliding Induction Course

Provided you have no medical conditionsthat could prevent you from flying safely. You’ll get gliding experience at a Volunteer Gliding Squadron (VGS) aiming to complete the Gliding Induction Course (GIC).

The GIC consists of three levels of instruction; you’ll learn all about aerodynamics and controlling the aircraft, first in a classroom, then taking control and practicing what you’ve learned in the air, completed the course and you’ll be awarded a GIC certificate.

Course Content

Aircraft Course level / flight time


  • GIC 1 – 20 minutes
  • GIC 2 – 25 minutes
  • GIC 3 – 30 minutes


  • GIC 1 – 3 launches
  • GIC 2 – 4 launches
  • GIC 3 – 5 launches

Prove yourself here and you can move on to a Gliding Scholarship (GS) course to continue your flight training.

Gliding Scholarship Course

To be nominated for a Gliding Scholarship (GS) just let your squadron or unit staff know you want in. It’s open to anyone over 16 and you’re not required to have completed a GIC 1, 2 or 3, but it’s great if you have. Once you pass the standard medical check, it’s just a matter of waiting for a place on the course to become available.

Course Content

Aircraft Flight time/glider launches

Vigilant 8 Hours (extra 20% allowed for further training to solo standard)

Viking 40 Launches

Courses can be taken either over successive weekends until completed or as a continuous week-long course (usually in the summer). Course time can vary due to your progress and the weather, so motivation and commitment are key. If you’re successful, you can look forward to wearing your blue GS wings on your uniform.

Going solo and beyond

If you show aptitude you could be invited to progress to solo standard and achieve your silver GS wings for flying solo!

If you’re one of the best you could be invited, or apply, to become a Flight Staff Cadet. Training to a much higher level, your gold GS wings for Advanced Glider Training (AGT)?

Pilot schemes

The Air Cadet Pilot Scheme

Why not aim for one of nearly 140 light aircraft courses available to air cadets each year at Tayside Aviation in Dundee?

A further 27 places are available at the Air Experience Flights (AEF) embedded with the RAF’s University Air Squadrons across the UK.

To apply you’ll first have to complete your non-solo flying course and win your blue wings or, preferably, have achieved a gliding solo and won your silver wings.

Air Cadet Pilot Navigation Scheme

You could be one of up to 30 cadets that win a place each year on the Air Cadet Pilot Navigation Scheme – run at Air Experience Flights. The entry criteria for applicants are the same as the Pilot Scheme. It’s a great chance to really expand your knowledge of aviation navigation.


Flying scholarships

There are several scholarships available to air cadets each year. These are sponsored by the Royal Aero Club, the Air League Educational Trust, the RAF Charitable Trust, the Geoffrey DeHaviland Foundation, Babcock Defence Services, the RAF Association and the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators.

For many cadets these courses are the stepping stone to their PPL – Private Pilots’ Licence – and potentially a career as a pilot with the RAF, the Royal Navy, Army or commercial airlines.

Some cadets achieve their PPLs before they even get their driving licence, so the sky really is the limit!



Gliding Scholarship Blue Wings

Gliding Scholarship Silver Solo Wings

Advanced Glider Training Gold Advanced Wings

Air Cadet Pilot Navigator Scheme

Air Cadet Pilot Scheme

RAF Flying Scholarship

 award_to  award_to award_to  award_to  award_to  award_to


 Sgt Oxby A


Cpl Davey G

Cpl Barnett S

Cpl Birchell  R

Sgt Kirk K



Sgt Birchall R


Sgt Davey G