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The 72nd Entry of Aircraft Apprentices at Royal Air Force Halton.
September the 5th 1952 saw the first members of the 72nd Entry arrive for the start of three years training as aircraft apprentices in the Royal Air Force.A right motley selection of young lads from all walks of life.
Over the next few days the numbers swelled to 297 all given their individual service number between 587831 and 588243. A block of 112 numbers were allocated from this batch for apprentices joining the radio chool at RAF Locking. Apprentices were also added from The Pakistan Air Force and the Ceylon Air Force. The numbers varied over the three years for a whole variety of changes in personal circumstances which meant training schedules were lost.
Life through the following three years shaped the future lives of many. Thousands of years service were accumulated.Some spent just a few years before returning to civilian life,some completed their initial engagement of twelve years. Many re-enlisted and saw service until Father Tyme refused to issue another bike.
A chance meeting in 1980 between two members started the search to rekindle friendships which had been made in those early days. pounding a typewriter and handwriting envelopes was quite time consuming and progress was slow.
Eventually it lead to three small lunchtime reunions at Northampton,Farnham and Ripon.these were followed by the first full reunion at Aston Clinton and since then these have taken place at various locations at regular intervals.
Much has been done to trace and locate members but there are still many unaccounted. Should you know any members, please ask them to make contact.
From the Trenchard Museum at Halton