The author, a former graduate of the RAF College, offers a Centennial Celebration history of the college . This book provides a well-researched history of one of the World’s premier military academies. – Highly Recommended.
NAME: 'We Seek The Highest', RAF College Cranwell, A Centenary Celebration FILE: R3060 AUTHOR: Roger Annett PUBLISHER: Pen and Sword, Air World BINDING: hard back PRICE: £30.00 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Centenary, military training, aviation, air training college, officer training, RAF, Lincolnshire, Cranwell
PAGES: 368 IMAGE: B3060.jpg BUYNOW: tinyurl.com/ygd8z2kx LINKS: DESCRIPTION: The author, a former graduate of the RAF College, offers a Centennial Celebration history of the college . This book provides a well-researched history of one of the World's premier military academies. – Highly Recommended. The Royal Navy established, with help from the Royal Aeronautical Society, the first military aviation school in 1911. It accepted volunteers who had already been awarded commissions in the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines. When the RNAS and RFC were merged in 1918, to form the RAF, the objective was to create a new service in all respects, including the training of new officers. Accordingly, the RAF College Cranwell was established in 1919, as many of the aviation officers either returned to their parent Services or became civilians. From that point, cadets could be inducted and be trained as officers with the full range of RAF specializations. During the period between the two World Wars, the RAF was restricted in funding, along with the Royal Navy and the Army. It still needed to train replacements for those leaving the service, but it was essentially a bi-plane service where its active service was restricted to bombing tribal villages to control the population in the Middle East. It was a period of stagnation and lost opportunities. Fortunately, the British aviation industry managed to survive and pioneer technological change. RAF Cranwell contributed to this development, most notably in the pioneering work of Whittle in developing a viable jet engine, and had to attempt to teach its new intakes in a way that prepared them for the times when funding of military equipment would once more expand, and to prepare for future conflict. In the late 1930s, Britain belatedly came to understand the threat posed by Nazi Germany and a major re-equipment program was embarked on. This inevitably saw an expansion of RAF personnel and RAF Cranwell responded to the pressures, turning out a new generation of officers in all specializations. In little more than a couple of years, the RAF transformed into a monoplane air service. Fury biplanes, serving in front-line fighter squadrons, may have been repainted in camouflage, but in a few months the remaining squadrons converted to the new monoplane fighters. The Hurricane shared much technically with the biplane Fury that it was replacing, but it offered a revolution in capability. The Spitfire was somewhat more demanding, particularly for engineering officers, but the RAF rapidly came to master it and exploit its performance. Through World War Two, the RAF dramatically expanded and the requirement for officer training increased accordingly. RAF Cranwell had to adapt to a new world of aviation as aircraft became faster and more powerful weapons, with the first jet fighters joining squadrons before the end of the war. Then, in 1946, the Services had to accept a dramatic reduction of funding, as an impoverished Britain concentrated on an escape from Empire. It was a much more demanding period of change than in 1919 because, numerically, the RAF was still a monoplane propeller service at a time when jet aircraft were making prop planes obsolete and new weapons were becoming available. Once more industry had responded remarkably well and the British aviation industry continued to pioneer in the development of weapons and aircraft with both the US and USSR depending on British technology, in the latter case because the second British national socialist Government was more aligned to the Communists and happy to give Stalin technology that he was soon to turn against Anglo-American interests. RAF Cranwell continued to adapt to the rapidly changing demands of funding, political interest, and international relations. as the Berlin Air Lift marked the start of the new world conflict, the Cold War, moving rapidly to the Korean War, the long succession of surrogate wars, and the withdrawal from the last colonies of the British Empire. The loss of national pride and the betrayal of Britain by its political classes saw the RAF having to adapt to the prospect of disappearing into a new German Empire as the Cold War came to an end. With Britain becoming increasingly Euro-sceptic, a new environment dominated by terrorism, and some large regional conflicts, presented new challenges which the RAF and its College RAF Cranwell had to respond to. It has not ended there, with Britain on the verge of becoming once more a significant sovereign nation there will be new opportunities and new challenges. RAF Cranwell has to adapt once more. It has been a Century of interesting times. Looking forward, and RAF Cranwell has much to look forward to, it remains to be seen if a new Service will need to be created to support the expansion of space exploration and all that that will entail. There is much to encourage the formation of a new service rather than 'compensate' the RAF for the loss of its original primary mission of strategic bombing to the Royal Navy