Their mission was to help the charity organisation Flying Scholarships for Disabled People – and it involved serving as guard of honour for two very senior VIPs.
A dozen-strong contingent of air cadets from East Dunbartonshire’s super-active 2496 Squadron pulled out all the stops to promote a cause that’s dear to their hearts at the prestigious Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire.
The squadron is based in Cumbernauld, but draws its membership from a wide area which includes Lenzie, Kirkintilloch, Bishopbriggs and Twechar, and several members are pupils at Lenzie Academy, St Ninians and Kirkintilloch Academy.
During their weekend trip they were asked to form a Guard of Honour for the cadets mounted a Guard of Honour for His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Al Hussein of Jordan and Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Andrew Pulford – who chatted with them about his own time as an air cadet.
The cadets also met TV personality Carol Vorderman, who is Honorary Group Captain of the Air Cadets and a champion and sponsor of the flying scholarships charity.
But most of their first day at the show saw them fully engaged in setting up a presentation and awards ceremony enclosure and marquee for disabled scholars, their families, and dignitaries.
Flight Lieutenant Stevie Cairns said: “This is a special event in aviation for Flying Scholarships for the Disabled set up by Group Captain and Second World War ace Sir Douglas Bader” – whose career is celebrated in the war epic “Reach for the Sky”, starring Kenneth More as the legendary disabled RAF ace.
Now they are joining scholarship success Pauline Gallacher, who has a disability, in a bid to raise £200,000 for their remarkabe cause.