Thursday, 28 December 2017

Squadron Bag Packs

On Saturday, 23rd December cadets from 361 Squadron carried out bag packs at the Sainsbury's Superstores at Washington Galleries Shopping Centre and Team Valley Retail World.

It was most unusual to be able to carry out bag packs simultaneously at two locations on the same day however our cadets rose to the challenge and were able to raise a total of £1,902.44 (plus a few assorted foreign coins!) for the squadron welfare fund at the two venues.

Well done to all the cadets who took part (and the squadron band who played at the Team Valley store) and thanks to Sainsbury's for the opportunity for us to raise some much appreciated squadron funds in this way.

361 Squadron Presentation Evening 2017

The squadron recently held its annual presentation evening with numerous cadets receiving a variety of awards including Training Certificates, Duke of Edinburgh Awards, Radio Certificates, BTEC Awards and 361 Squadron Merit Awards.
Four cadets were promoted to the rank of corporal.
Cpls Brad Elliott, Akeesha Adamus, Adam Sexton and Jay Jackson proudly displaying their new rank stripes.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Remembrance Sunday 2017

On Sunday, 12th November members of 361 (Gateshead) Squadron participated in the Remembrance Parade and Service in Gateshead, with the squadron band leading the parade of Veterans, Armed Forces as well as Sea, Army and Air Cadets.
The parade was a great success and our cadets were complimented by many people on their appearance and performance.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Our Latest High Flyers

On Wednesday, 25th October four cadets from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron went flying with 11 Air Experience Flight at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire.

For brothers Bradley and Tyler Crook (pictured) it was their first flight in a two seat Grob Tutor T1 aircraft and they both took control of the aircraft in the air.

The other two squadron members, Cdt Jubb and Cdt Saadatirad, had flown previously so they both took the opportunity to experience some aerobatics and found out what it was like to fly upside down!

Monday, 16 October 2017

Latest Duke of Edinburgh Award Expedition

Our latest Duke of Edinburgh Award Bronze Expedition took place last weekend starting at Gilsland near Hadrians Wall.

 The weather was a little damp on Saturday morning but improved over the rest of the weekend.
In the Minibus before setting off
Ready to Go...

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Blue Communications Awards

One of the new awards that can be gained by RAF Air Cadets is the Blue Communications Badge.

To qualify for this award a cadet must learn about the use of two-way radios, correct radio procedures and basic cybersecurity.

Sixteen cadets from 361 squadron were amongst the first in Durham/Northumberland Wing to qualify and be presented with their badges and certificates.

Level 1 BTEC Presentations

RAF Air Cadets can now qualify for a Level 1 BTEC award by completing their basic training and recently ten cadets were the first at 361 (Gateshead) Squadron to be presented with their certificates.

Well done to all!

Flt Sgt William Fletcher

Sgt William Fletcher has been promoted to the rank of Flight Sergeant. 

Well deserved and congratulations on behalf of all at 361 squadron.

Pre-Duke of Edinburgh Award Badges

Cadets Lucas Corrigan and brothers Bradley Crook and Tyler Crook were recently presented with their Pre-Duke of Edinburgh Award badges which recognises the achievement of set standards in Volunteering, Skills, Expedition Training and Physical Achievement.

Well done to all three cadets who have now achieved the first step towards gaining their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award.

Battle of Britain Parade and Service at Durham Cathedral

The 10th September saw the Battle of Britain Parade and Service at Durham Cathedral which was attended by cadets and staff from all around Durham/Northumberland Wing including members of 361 (Gateshead) Squadron.

Despite a heavy rain shower after the service the March Past went ahead with the salute taken by the Lord Lieutenant of County Durham.

Wing Adventure Training Challenge

Cadets from Durham/Northumberland Wing (including a team from 361 squadron) recently took part in the Wing Adventure Training Challenge at RAF Spadeadam. 

Cadets competed in a range of activities including a day hike, mountain biking, first aid, orienteering and archery.
Cadets & Staff at the 2017 Adventure Training Challenge

Saturday, 29 July 2017


Last Thursday, four members of 361 squadron were presented with HeartStart certificates having successfully completed a British Heart Foundation approved CPR course.
Pictured are Cdt Wilson, Cpl Kulik, Cdt Corrigan and Cdt Nixon

All cadets receive basic First Aid training when they join the squadron and can later progress to more advanced Saint John Ambulance approved courses.

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Onesie Charity Walk

On the 1st May, cadets from 361 squadron supported the Heel & Toe Children's Charity which supports children with Cerebral Palsy & Other Physical Disabilities at their sponsored charity walk in Saltwell Park, Gateshead.
The squadron provided marshals at checkpoints along the course and drummers from the squadron band headed the walk around the park.

Some cadets modelled the latest air cadet uniforms which have a striking similarity to Telly Tubbies characters!

A number of cadets were sponsored by friends and relatives to raise money for this very worthy cause.

Beating the Retreat

Recently Flt Sgt Owen McPake, Sgt William Fletcher and Cpl Sam Dawson from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron once again headed north with a contingent from Durham/Northumberland Wing to join cadets from across the UK on the Esplanade of Edinburgh Castle for the ACFA Beating the Retreat.
Performing alongside over 100 cadets from all services, the retreat culminated in a phenomenal finale by the Massed Bands of the Tri-Service Military Bands and the Cadet Force Pipes and Drums.

Well done to all who were involved!

Monday, 24 April 2017

2017 Tri-Service Band Camp

Earlier this month six cadets from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron attended the annual Tri-Service Band Camp at Redford Barracks in Edinburgh.

The Camp culminated on the Friday evening with a public concert in Portabello Town Hall in Edinburgh where the band, consisting of cadets from the Sea Cadet Corps, the Army Cadet Force, The Royal Air Force Air Cadets and the Boy's Brigade, gave an spirited performance of music for all tastes and the complete concert is in the video below.

The band will also be performing the Beating Retreat ceremony on the esplanade of Edinburgh Castle (the same location as the famous Edinburgh Military Tattoo.)

At the end of the camp, Cadet Stefan Istrat from 361 Squadron was presented with the award for the Most Improved Cadet Musician in the Junior Band.

 (All members of 361 Squadron get the opportunity to play in the squadron band - No experience or previous music knowledge necessary!)

First Time Flyers

On the 19th April, 3 cadets from 361 squadron experienced their first flight in a Grob Tutor T1 training aircraft with 11 Air Experience Flight at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire.

Cadets Jubb, Jackson and Wilcox all had the opportunity to take control of the aircraft in the air and were presented with First Flight Certificates to mark the occasion.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Recent Presentations

Recently four cadets from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron received a variety of awards.

From left to right: Flt Sgt McPake was presented with a St John Ambulance Activity First Aid Certificate which allows him to teach other cadets up to Youth First Aid level. Cdts Istrat and Ruddick were both awarded their First Class Cadet badges and Cpl Fletcher was promoted to Sergeant.

Lord Lieutentant's Presentations

Ten cadets from Durham/Northumberland Wing were recently presented with BTEC Diplomas by Mrs S Winfield, the Lord Lieutenant of Tyne & Wear in a formal ceremony held at HMS Calliope on Gateshead Quayside.

Amongst these recipients was Flt Sgt Owen McPake from 361 squadron (pictured third from the right) who was presented with with his BTEC in Music for Practical Performance which is one of three BTECs available to members of the RAF Air Cadets.

Friday, 17 March 2017

New First Class Cadets

Last night, eight cadets from 361 squadron completed their basic training and were presented with First Class Cadet badges to mark this stage of their progression in the RAF Air Cadets syllabus.
Pictured (in no particular order) are Cadets Wilson, Starling, Jackson, Adamus, Wilcox, Jubb and the Atkinson twins with their newly presented badges.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Air Cadet National Concert Band

Recently Corporal Sam Dawson from 361 Squadron attended the Air Cadet Organisation National Concert Band Camp at the Royal Air Force College Cranwell.
This camp is attended by selected cadets from all around the UK, most of whom had never played together before, and after a week of intense rehearsals the camp culminated in a final concert in Whittle Hall at Cranwell.

Cpl Dawson who is also a member of the 361 squadron band and the Durham/Northumberland Wing band (which won the ACO National Marching Band competition in 2016) is this week attending another band camp with the Air Cadet North Region Band making it a full house having played in the Squadron, Wing, Region and Corps bands!

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

2017 Wing Cross-Country Competition

Last Sunday 361 squadron took part in the Durham/Northumberland Wing Inter-Squadron Cross-Country Competition at the Rising Sun Country Park in Wallsend. Unfortunately the park did not live up to it's name as the sun remained hidden and the weather was wet, cold and miserable throughout the day.

Nevertheless our team, consisting of Cadets Atkinson and Hunter as well as Corporals Mos, Frazer-Denham, Kulik, and Craig, battled through the mud and finished the course successfully and the photo shows them at the end of the competition.

Well done to them all!

Air Experience Flying at RAF Leeming

On Friday, 10th February four cadets from 361 (Gateshead) Squadron went flying with No. 11 Air Experience Flight at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire.

Cadets Jack Fisher, Ryan Jackson and Alesha Ruddick all experienced their first flight in Grob Tutor T1 aircraft whilst cadet Akeesha Adamus had her second flight.