Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Central Sector Archery Competition

On Saturday, 5th December a team of cadets from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron participated in the Wing Central Sector Archery competition which was held at 1248 (Prudhoe) Squadron.

Despite our team not being regular archers they came a very credible 3rd and received Bronze medals which were presented by our Sector Commander, Sqn Ldr Peter Towns.

The overall winner of the competition was 224 (Hexham) Sqn and in second place was 1313 (Wickham) Sqn.
The 361 Squadron Team
(All photographs courtesy of 1248 Sqn.)

Friday, 27 November 2015

A Birthday Surprise

Members of the Durham/Northumberland Wing Band surprised a former RAF Sergeant on his 60th Birthday today at his nursing home, Covent House in Birtley. 

Brian Davis, who served for 9 years with RAF and is a veteran of the Falklands campaign, suffered injuries in an accident a few years ago and all he talks about according to Linda Trainer, one of the team at Covent House, is his life in the RAF.

So by arrangement with the Royal Air Forces Association and their representative our very own Wing Commander Dave Harris, Linda asked if it would be possible for an RAF band to make a surprise visit to Brian on his birthday. 

With the Wing Commander knowing he could make this wish come true, all be it with his very own ATC Wing Band, which had just returned the night before from the ATC National Band Competition at RAF Halton (where they came a very credible 3rd).

The arrangements were made and finalised literally with a couple of hours to spare and 5 members of the band, from 3 different squadrons, under the command of Sgt (ATC) Darren Taylor came together to surprise Brian on this special day.
Cpl Owen McPake (Clarinet), Cdt Sam Dawson (Trombone) and Cdt William Fletcher (Tenor Sax) all from 361 (Gateshead) Sqn were joined by Cdt Thomas Wilkinson (Trumpet) from 1313 (Whickham) Sqn and Sgt Callum Hartwell from 346 (Tynemouth) Sqn.

With the help of some last minute logistical support from Flt Sgt (ATC) Kevin Laws also of 361 Sqn, the band members marched down the corridor to a very surprised Brian. 

The band then struck up with a very special arrangement of HAPPY BIRTHDAY, turning Brian to tears. The band finished off with one more piece of music before leaving him to enjoy the rest of his celebrations.

All the members of the Durham/Northumberland Wing Band wish Brian “Many Happy Returns” on his 60th Birthday and thank you to Wing Commander Harris for arranging this surprise and allowing the band to be part of this very special occasion.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

The National Band Competition at RAF Halton

Last weekend, three cadets from 361 Squadron attended the National Band Competition at RAF Halton. All three are members of of the Durham/Northumberland Wing Band which was representing North Region against the other five regions of the Air Training Corps. 

The band which is formed of cadets from the 35 squadrons in Durham/Northumberland Wing was only formed within the last two years, and it was a major achievement to reach the National Finals in such a short time.

The 361 Cadets, Cpl Owen McPake (Clarinet), Cdt Sam Dawson (Trombone) and Cdt William Fletcher (Tenor Sax) all performed in the main band competition where the Wing Band were awarded a very credible third place, whilst Cdt Dawson also represented the Region in the Solo Side Drum contest.

Cdt Sam Dawson looking very happy with the Commandant of the Air Cadet Organisation, Air Cdre Dawn McCafferty and Honorary Ambassador, Gp Capt Carol Vorderman at the recent National Band Competition.

Saturday, 3 October 2015

First Time Flyers

On Friday, 2nd October three cadets from 361 squadron went Air Experience Flying for the first time at RAF Leeming and although the day started off very foggy, grounding all flights, the weather later improved and by the afternoon it was clear and sunny allowing flying to take place.
Pictured above are Cadets Sam Donkin, Mark Heatherington and Allanah McNulty fully kitted out and waiting for their turn to fly...

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Come and Join Us!

  • Are you over 12 Years of Age?
  • Are you in or about to go in to Year 8 (or above) at school?
  • Then why not join us and take part in a wide range of exciting and challenging activities.
  • Go to our web site at www.361-atc.com for more information.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Cadet Luke Robinson's Last Parade with 361 Squadron

Last Thursday was Cadet Luke Robinson's last parade with 361 (Gateshead) Squadron before his families move to Australia. 

Luke, who has been a member of both the 361 Squadron and Durham/Northumberland Wing bands, was presented with an Australian flag signed by cadets and staff, as well as a bush hat to keep away the flies in his new home and a kangaroo (not a real one!) to keep him company on the long flight to OZ.
Cdt Robinson pictured wearing his new headwear
Luke hopes to join the Australian Air Force Cadets when he arrives in Australia and we would like to wish him the best of luck for the future.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

361 Squadron Open Day

On Saturday, 11th July we will be holding an Open Day for anyone interested in the Air Cadets and our range of activities.

There will be a wide range of displays and we will also be carrying out a sponsored Flight Simulator Challenge during which a group of cadets will be flying a Grob Tutor (on our flight simulator) to approximately 25 RAF airfields around the UK.

Membership of the Air Cadets is open to all young people over the age of 12 (and in, or about to go in Year 8 at school) and we also have adult volunteering opportunities available both uniformed and civilian.

All are welcome and we look forward to seeing you on Saturday at our squadron headquarters on Alexandra Road in Gateshead between 1000 and 1600hrs.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

361 Squadron Success at the 2015 Wing Competitions Day

On Saturday, 9th May 361 (Gateshead) Squadron participated in the Durham/Northumberland Wing Competitions Day which was held in South Shields.

Competitions held on the day included Banner Drill, Drill, Aircraft Recognition, First Aid, Media and Aero Modelling all of which were open to all 35 Squadrons in the Wing.
The 361 (Gateshead) Squadron Banner Drill Squad

The 361 Drill Team

361 squadron's results for the day were:

1st Place in the Banner Drill Competition (for the 4th year in a row!)
2nd Place in the Drill Competition
3rd Place in the Junior Aircraft Recognition Competition

which resulted in 361 squadron being declared the overall winner of the day.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Beating the Retreat at Edinburgh Castle - 2015

On Saturday, 2nd May 2015 the Tri-Service Cadet Band performed the Beating of the Retreat on the Esplanade at Edinburgh Castle.

The band, which consists of the Sea Cadet Corps, the Black Watch Army Cadet Force and Durham/Northumberland Wing Air Cadets, as well as the Boys Brigade, is the only band of its kind in the United Kingdom and has performed annually in Edinburgh for the past few years.

(Video by Sgt (ATC) Callum Hartwell.)

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Air Experience Flying at RAF Leeming

Today, four cadets from 361 squadron went flying at 11 Air Experience Flight at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire.

Despite some limitations caused by the weather, Cadets Luke Robinson, Jack Tunnell, Logan Gibson and Brad Elliot all had good flights and learnt about take off, circuit and landing procedures.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Ice Skating at Whitley Bay

March 31st was a recreation evening at 361 squadron when a group of cadets went ice skating at Whitley Bay Ice Rink. 

A good time was had by all despite one or two cadets getting closer to the ice than they planned (i.e. falling over!)

Sunday, 29 March 2015

National Navigation Award Scheme Training

Seven cadets from 361 Squadron were amongst a large number from Durham/Northumberland Wing who participated in a Bronze NNAS (National Navigation Award Scheme) training session at Chopwell Woods in Gateshead.

The NNAS is designed to train cadets in the map reading and navigation skills they will need when participating in the Expedition section of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.

After spending a few hours finding their way around the woods, all cadets emerged unscathed so they must have learned something!
Six of the seven 361 Cadets who took part in todays training

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Recently Qualified Instructor Cadets

Cpl Owen McPake, Flt Sgt Sam Hogg and Cpl Ellie Clelland from 361 Squadron recently successfully completed a Method of Instruction Course which qualifies them as Instructor Cadets.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Climbing at Simonside

Some cadets from 361 Squadron at a recent climbing session at Simonside in South Shields.

Watch the video for a bit of a surprise at the end... 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

St John Youth First Aid

Ten cadets from 361 Squadron were recently presented with their St John Youth First Aid Certificates and Badges following successful completion of a weekend training course held at the Squadron Headquarters.
Nine of the ten cadets who recentely received Youth First Aid Awards

Monday, 9 February 2015

361 Squadron Staff Qualifications

Staff from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron with recently gained qualifications including St John Ambulance Activities First Aid, British Heart Foundation Heartstart Trainer, H & S Entry Level Award Tutor and Risk Assessor certificates.

These awards will allow staff to teach these valuable and potentially life saving skills to other members of the squadron.

First Time Flyers

After one aborted visit to RAF Leeming caused by poor weather, Cadets Callum Tearney, Jack Tunnell and Logan Gibson flew last Wednesday.

The weather was clear but cold and all three cadets successfully completed their first flights in a Grob Tutor T1 of 11 Air Experience Flight.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

100 Squadron RAF Visit

Cdts Tearney, Tunnell and Gibson from 361 squadron travelled to RAF Leeming last Wednesday for Air Experience Flying, however unfortunately due to poor visibility the Grob Tutors of 11 AEF were grounded.

However to sweeten the news that they would not be getting airborne that day the cadets were able to visit 100 Squadron RAF and have a close look at the Hawk T1 aircraft used by the squadron and learn about the role of that unit.

The photograph shows the cadets up close and personal with one of 100 Squadron's Hawks.