Bedford School's RAF section of the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) can now take to the skies whatever the weather thanks to a new high-tech flight simulator, which was officially opened by Head Master James Hodgson in May 2018. The new simulator system is capable of simulating 24 different aircraft and variants, from helicopters, aeroplanes of all sizes and even a space shuttle.
The school, which has one of the largest and most active CCF Corps in the country, aims to get its RAF cadets flying as often as possible with the Cambridge University Air Squadron. Thanks to the new simulator, cadets can now supplement their flying sorties with regular, realistic flight training - regardless of weather conditions or pilot availability.
The simulator system was further enhanced with a purpose-built cockpit, with the kind help of the school's Design and Technology department and a grant from the Bedford School Trust, which was used to purchase flight instruments, a cockpit radio and autopilot.
CCF Commanding Officer Major Peter Lumley-Wood told us, “We believe the system is the most advanced operated by any Cadet Force, and our RAF liaison officer is aware of no other like it (operated by cadets) anywhere in the country. It has been the culmination of a wide collaborative effort across the school, and I would like to thank the Bedford School Trust, the Design and Technology Department and, of course, the officers of the Corps for working so hard to bring it to fruition.”