Those Days! Graduation

103rd Entry Shield

Eventually reached the end of the 3 years, and it was time for the Passing Out parade. Do you remember we had a “wet weather” parade in one of the hangars, so no glory on the Parade Ground, but I’m sure our Mum’s and Dad’s thought we were great anyway!
If anyone has real prints of the day, please send me in a JPG file and I’ll upload them.

Click on any picture for a better view to start your viewing, then use the arrow buttons to step through the photos.

Photos from various members.

Graduation Day

Below is the address given by Air Chief Marshal Sir Wallace Kyle, who was reviewing officer for our passing out parade. It’s a useful overview of some of the things many of us have probably forgotten. Below this is the list of Prizewinners, a list of all those awarded School Colours for sport, and all the “officials”, including us, who were on parade.

Report on 103rd Entry of Aircraft Apprentices
by Air Chief Marshal Sir Wallace Kyle
Reviewing Officer

I begin with my report on the 103rd Entry. The Entry started training in January 1963 with a strength of 179 RAF, 8 Malaysian and 2 Rhodesian Apprentices. A few of these have fallen by the wayside throughout training, some being medically unfit and others being found unsuitable. Our two Rhodesian Apprentices returned home at the beginning of November leaving 177 Apprentices passing-out today.

Technical Training
177 Apprentices of the Entry were presented for the final Trade Test examination; 9 qualified as substantive Corporals and, with five exceptions, the others qualified as Junior Technicians; the remaining 5 qualified as Senior Aircraftmen. The average mark achieved – 69.9% – maintains the high standard set by previous entries. Five Apprentices (2.8% of the Entry) gained distinguished passes; this achievement is worthy of special note because the honours were shared by all trades.

Education Training
On the education side the basic requirement for successful completion of an apprenticeship is to pass the Final Examination in educational subjects. 178 Apprentices sat this examination. The average mark of 63% and the proportion of Class A passes (25% of the Entry) is very high; only one failed.

Those who were considered to have the ability were given an advanced course in educational subjects leading to the award of an Ordinary National Certificate in Engineering. 78 members (44% of the Entry) have qualified.

Entirely voluntarily, 86 Apprentices entered for the City & Guilds of London Institute examination and achieved a pass rate of 81%; this is much above the National average.

Also voluntarily, 150 Apprentices took one or more subjects in the General Certificate of Education. Two gained Advanced Level Certificates. At Ordinary Level, out of 336 subject entries, there were 263 passes, giving an excellent pass rate of 78%. Altogether, this Entry has achieved commendable educational results.

General Service Training
The third main part of the Halton Apprenticeship is concerned with General Service Training. This aims at producing young men who are fit to be members of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces. It is therefore concerned with developing character, physical fitness, qualities of leadership and comradeship. Games, drill and life in the Wings are the important features here.

At sport the Entry has done well. During the first year of training they became the first Entry to win the Cock of the Walk Trophy for Inter-Squadron Sport in two successive terms. To date 37 Apprentices have been awarded School Colours. A number of Apprentices have represented Technical Training Command and ten have been members of RAF Junior teams. In addition to the normal games such as rugby, cricket and football, members of the Entry have successfully taken part in such sport as equitation, sailing and the Devizes/Westminster Canoe Race. In June 1965 six members of the Entry successfully completed a 60 mile trek across Dartmoor in the Ten Tors expedition. In company with another patrol of Halton Apprentices they were the first members of the RAF ever to complete the Senior Ten Tors.

Among this record of successful endeavor the 103rd Entry have not overlooked the needs of those less fortunate than themselves. They have subscribed generously to many appeals for charity. Together with members of other entries they have given parcels of Christmas food and groceries to elderly people in the neighbourhood.

The standard of drill has been satisfactory and the Entry has played a full part in ceremonial occasions throughout their training. Between February and June 1964 they provided Halton’s Guard of Honour, and 125 members of the Entry have lined the route in London on four State visits. 100 members of the Entry marched in the processional party at Sir Winston Churchill’s funeral.

The voluntary Apprentice Bands have been well supported by the 103rd Entry. Thirteen belong to the brass band, 14 are members of the pipe band and 7 are members of the Corps of Trumpeters. These bandsmen have taken part in many ceremonial functions including the Royal Tournament, the Bath Tattoo and the Lord Mayor’s Show. In the Inter-Wing Pipe Band Competition the Entry has twice provided the entire band representing 2(A) Wing and individual members have won a number of competitions. Worthy of special mention is Cpl.App Rattray who in August this year became the first apprentice to win the Silver Pipes award on three successive occasions.

Special Service Attainments
Six Apprentices of the Entry have been selected for Cadetships – Peele, Neal and Dillon J. in the General Duties Branch, Peele and Neal as Pilots, J. Dillon as Navigator; Slawson and Starbuck in the Technical Branch and K. Dillon in the Equipment Branch. The two Dillons are brothers. This is the first occasion on which two brothers have been awarded cadetships on passing out from Halton. Two other Apprentices have been selected for training leading to commissions – Cockram in the General Duties Branch as Pilot and Forbear in the Technical Branch.

To conclude my report on the 103rd Entry I would like to say that they have settled down well to Service life and to training at Halton and they have made excellent contributions to all Apprentice activities.

Parade Officials

Reviewing Officer
Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Bomber Command

The Reviewing Officer was accompanied by:

Air Marshal Sir DONALD R. EVANS, K.B.E., C.B., D.F.C.
Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Technical Training Command

Air Vice-Marshal B. ROBINSON, C.B.E.
Air Officer Commanding No. 24 Group

Air Commodore D. M. STRONG, C.B., A.F.C.
Commandant, No. 1 School of Technical Training

Group Captain C. V. G. USHER
Senior Training Officer, No. 1 School of Technical Training

Group Captain H. H. MAYOH
Principal Education Officer, No. 1 School of Technical Training

Group Captain D. S. GRANT
Officer Commanding, Medical Training Establishment

Wing Commander D. A. FLINT
Officer Commanding, Technical Training Wing

Wing Commander W. T. BUSSEY, M.V.O., O.B.E., B.E.M.
Officer Commanding, No. 3 Apprentice Wing

Squadron Leader V. A. GOUGH, A.F.C.
Officer Commanding, No. 2 Apprentice Wing

The Parade was under the command of Flight Sergeant Apprentice R. A. Peele.
Other N.C.O. Apprentices were subordinate Commanders.

Entries on parade were the 103rd, 104th, 105th, and 302nd.

Parade Adjutant
Parade Warrant Officer  
Colour Bearer  
Colour Warrant Officer 

Cpl. App. P.R Slawson
Ldg. App. R.E Craig
Sgt. App. D. Cockran
Cpl. App. G.R McMenemy

Colour Escorts

Ldg. App. D.G. Avery
Ldg. App. W.A. Davidson


Cadetships have been awarded to:-

Flt. Sgt. App. R. A. Peele
Sgt. App. B. R. Neal
Cpl App. J. Dillon
Cpl App. P. R. Slawson
Cpl App. T. A. Starbuck
Sgt. App. K. Dillon

General Duties Branch
General Duties Branch
General Duties Branch
Technical Branch
Technical Branch
Equipment Branch

Apprentices selected for commissions are.-


Sgt. App. D. Cockram
Cpl. App. J. S. Forbear

General Duties Branch
Technical Branch

Highest in Order of Merit, All Subjects
Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson

Highest in Order of Merit, Educational Subjects

First Prize
Second Prize

Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson
Air. App. R. E. Searle

Cpl. App. J. A. Dillon

Highest in Order of Merit, General Service Efficiency

First Prize
Second Prize

Flt. Sgt. App. R. A. Peele
Sgt. App. B. R. Neal

Highest average for practical fitting over three-year course
Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson

Best Tradesmen in Trade Standards Trade Test

Airframe Fitter
Electrical Fitter (Air) 1st
Electrical Fitter (Air) 2nd
Engine Fitter
Instrument Fitter (Gen)
Instrument Fitter (Nav)

Air.App. D. Murphy
Ldg. App. P.R. Coate
Air. App. T.A. Milne
Cpl. App. P.R. Slawson
Air. App. M.J. Bossy
Cpl. App. R. Dent


Monsignor Beauchamp Memorial Prize
The late Monsignor Beauchamp was Principal Roman Catholic Chaplain for the Royal Air Force and for almost 20 years Roman Catholic Chaplain at Halton. On his death a fund was raised to provide among other presentations a book prize to the best all round Apprentice passing out with each Entry.
Winner-Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson

Pioneer Trophy
Presented by the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Naval Air Service Ex-Boys Association to the Apprentice who obtains the highest marks in all technical training subjects at the final examination of each Entry.
Winner-Cpl. App. R. Dent

Quinton Memorial Trophy
On 13th August, 1951, Flight Lieutenant J. A. Quinton sacrificed his life in saving an A.T.C. Cadet when both were flying in an aircraft which was involved in a mid-air collision. For this supreme act of gallantry flight Lieutenant Quinton was posthumously awarded the “George Cross”. As a mark of esteem all A.T.C. Cadets at that time subscribed one penny per head so that the Quinton Memorial Trophy and replica could be presented to the best all round ex-A.T.C. Cadet passing out with each Entry at Halton.
Winner Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson

Crebbin-Robinson Cups
At the 1936 Model Engineering Exhibition held in London certain examples of basic exercises carried out by Apprentices at Halton were on display. These exhibits were admired by a Dr Robinson and a Mr. Crebbin who kindly offered a Cup for the best Trade Standards Practical Fitting Test at the Final examinations of each Entry. In December, 1960, a second Cup was provided from School funds. One Cup is now awarded for the best Trade Standards Practical Fitting Test in Mechanical Trades and the other for the best Trade Standards Practical Fitting Test in Electrical and Instrument Trades.

Winner:-Mechanical Trades
Cpl. App. P. R. Slawson

Winner:-Electrical and Instrument Trades
Cpl. App. S. S. Keen

Elliott Memorial Prize
Mr. R. D. Elliott was Sir Alan Cobham’s ground engineer during his many flights to India and South Africa in the early 1920’s. In 1926 Mr. Elliott was killed during the first England to Australia flight. In 1927 a Memorial Prize was awarded by the Royal Aeronautical Society to be presented to the Apprentice who gained the highest marks in English and General Studies at the final examinations of each Entry.
Winner-Ldg. App. 1. P. Johnston


S.A.A.  J. E. Carhart – 1964
C.A.A.  C. S Frame – 1965
L.A.A.  R. Mawson – 1964
A.A.  C. J. Wales – 1965
A.A.  G. R. Weallans – 1965

A.A.  Y. C. Leon – 1965

A.A. Lim Mah Hooi – 1964
A.A.  M. B. Smith – 1963/64/65

A.A.  I. A. Armitage – 1964
A.A.  T. Baldwin – 1964
C.A.A.  J.R. Bromley – 1964
A.A.  J. Griffin – 1964

S.A.A.  N. B. Johnson – 1965
A.A.  J. W. Myers – 1965

Cross Country
A.A.  J. McKenzie – 1963/64/65

A.A.  J. Bell – 1965

C.A.A.  N. J. Pearson – 1965
A.A.  R. W. Procter – 1965
A.A.  C. J. Wales – 1965

A.A.  B. C. Houston – 1965
A.A.  M. G. Lewry – 1965
A.A.  A. T. Taulbut – 1965

Modern Pentathlon
A.A.  C. J. Wales – 1965

A.A.  P. Batt – 1965
C.A.A.  J. Bromley – 1965
S.A.A.  B. R. Neal – 1965
C.A.A.  A. Parr – 1965
F.S.A.A.  R. A. Peele – 1965
L.A.A.  M. H. F. Watts – 1965
A.A.  G. R. Weallans – 1965

A.A.  A. R. Born – 1965
S.A.A.  F. T. T. Maxwell – 1965

A.A.  W. J. Gallagher – 1965
L.A.A.  R. Mawson – 1965
A.A.  J. Mole – 1965
A.A.  J. Mooney – 1965
C.A.A.  N. J. Pearson – 1965
A.A.  K. P. Sheehan – 1965
L.A.A.  A. A. Shevells – 1965
A.A.  J. R. Taylor – 1965
L.A.A.  C. A. R. Worth – 1965

A.A.  C. G. Jones – 1965

A.A.  C. R. Bayes – 1964/1965

Table Tennis
A.A.  B. C. Houston – 1964

A.A.  J. R. Taylor – 1964

L.A.A.  D. M. Adams – 1965
A.A.  N. J. Beale – 1965

Ten Tors
S.A.A.  D. Cockram – 1965
C.A.A.  R. Dent – 1965
S.A.A.  K. Dillon – 1965
C.A.A  J. Dillon – 1965
A.A.  M. G. Lewry – 1965
L.A.A.  M. H. F. Watts – 1965