It may be your first experience of flying in the cockpit of a small aircraft, and you may be both excited and nervous. The flight will usually last between twenty and thirty minutes, and the aim is to give you an experience of flying and give you an insight into what you will be expected to do on a Gliding Scholarship later in your cadet life.

What will it consist of?
When you arrive at RAF Halton near Aylesbury, you will be given a brief tour of the Gliding School facilities. Then you will be given a ground brief on how to enter and leave the cockpit, how to wear the parachute and what to expect during the flight. The flight is structured to get you used to flying in a light aircraft.  The Gliding Induction Course (GIC) provides the opportunity for Air Cadets to learn how to operate the Vigilant in the upper air. The course enables you to experience practical flying training before you are old enough to actually undertake a Scholarship or solo. Instructors ensure that this is a very pleasurable experience, hopefully leaving you with a thirst for more. You will be shown local sites of interest, and are free to ask questions. This is usually a very enjoyable experience for cadets.

What do I have to do to get one?
Cadets should be at least 13 years and 3 months of age and must have consent to fly signed in their record book. Cadets must also show a high level of motivation, and no temporary or permanent medical condition that would make flying unsafe for the Student or the Pilot. The flight is only for between 20 and 30 minutes but will be assessed for suitability for a Gliding Scholarship. A certificate is awarded on completion.

GIC course content

Introduction to the Vigilant
Using the Parachute
Handover/ Take over Control
In flight Cadets are shown and given the opportunity to practice a handling exercise

20 Minutes Duration
General handling flight in the local area plus;
Introduction to Normal Glide Attitude
Pitch up and down using the elevator

25  Minutes Duration
General handling flight in the local area plus ;
revise Pitch up and down using the elevator
Roll left and right using Ailerons

30 minutes duration
General handling flight in the local area plus ;
revise Pitch up and down using the elevator
revise Roll left and right using Ailerons
Yaw Left and Right using rudder
Straight Stall Demonstration


Gliding Scholarship

A Gliding Scholarship course is an opportunity for ATC cadets to undergo further training and achieve Gliding Scholarship Wings. The course consists of up 8 hours in a Vigilant to achieve GS wings. Cadets showing the necessary aptitude are invited to progress onto the ‘solo’ standard and achieve the GS Solo Wings.

After you have completed the medical and your doctor has signed it to confirm that you are fit to undergo glider pilot training, you are ready for a course. Courses are available in two formats, either successive weekends until you have completed the course or a continuous week long course (usually in the summer, however they are held all year round at the Air Cadet Central Gliding School which is at RAF Syerston in Nottinghamshire). You must have the commitment to attend a GS course as it can be difficult to predict the exact time it will take to complete. This depends on your own progress and the weather. For cadets showing the required aptitude, there is the opportunity to progress on to ‘Solo’ standard and attain Solo GS Wings. There is also further training for cadets who apply to become staff cadets with the advanced courses whereby cadet can progress to attain ‘Gold’ wings denoting AGT or Advanced Glider Training.

Gliding Badges