THE BEST OF the best was the description given to two RAF Lossiemouth apprentices on their receiving special awards in a recent ceremony at RAF Halton.
The RAF Apprenticeship scheme and its apprentices are celebrating almost 100 years of history, tradition and excellence in delivering specialist ground crew who are capable of supporting today’s expeditionary Royal Air Force.
It is a concept that may be traced back to Lord Hugh Trenchard and the birth of the Royal Air Force – so it was fitting that this year’s awards ceremony was held during National Apprenticeship week.
SAC Lewis Goodman was recognised for his professionalism, work ethos and team spirit with a Highly Commended award.
Since his posting to Lossiemouth, Lewis continuously worked to engineering standards commensurate with an experienced technician, belying his time in rank. He also developed into an excellent mentor for trainees following in his footsteps in the General Engineering Flight.
Additionally, SAC Goodwin was specifically selected as part of the Station’s support to a major overseas NATO exercise, and volunteered for additional duties in support of recent operational commitments.
SAC Colin Appleton is a general technician in the Station Workshop at Lossiemouth. He was awarded a Personal Achievement Award for his efforts to succeed despite his severe dyslexia.
After being given support to raise his awareness of his necessary approach to learning, Colin progressed and gained an understanding of his condition. By showing great tenacity and motivation and displaying a high level of maturity he took ownership, going from strength to strength by self-directing his learning, outperforming his peers in all aspects of his training.
During his initial training Colin was awarded the Commanding Officer’s Trophy for best all round performance, the Harlech Trophy for the highest standard of RAF core values and military skills, the Physical Education shield for best overall performance, the Cameron Award for the most improved student, and the prestigious Worshipful Company of Turners Award for achieving the highest average during the turning phase of his training
Commenting on his award SAC Appleton said: “It was a real surprise to win an award especially with my learning difficulties and I know my parents are really proud”.
Colin’s parents Gill and Keith echoed his sentiments when his Mum said: “It’s unbelievable what he has achieved in the RAF and we’re very proud of him.”
Gp Capt (Retired) Duncan Grant from the RAF Halton Apprentice Association summed up the event when he said: ”I found every story inspiring and not just in the technical aspect but also in the personal and leadership aspect and it was nice to see their families supporting them”.
Air Vice-Marshal AM Turner, Air Officer Commanding of 22(Training) Group, presented the awards and said of the event: “It was fabulous again to present a glittering array of awards to the finest of our young airman and airwomen.
“Their technical prowess is beyond question but what is especially noteworthy is how engaged they are beyond their immediate work and in what the Royal Air Force can offer.”