Cydweithredu Ddyry Cychwyn
Teamwork Leads the Way

1344 (Cardiff) Squadron
Air Training Corps

Teamwork Leads the Way

FAQs & Parent Information

What sort of activities does 1344 do?

Everything you see on this website and more. Check out our Activity Calendar and News pages for more information.

How old must I be to join?

The minimum age we can accept members is 12, as long as you are in school Year 8 or above. The maximum age is 17. Cadets who reach 17 can apply to stay with us until they turn 20. We cannot accept applicants who are 18/19 because of the training involved.

Similarly staff must be a minimum age of 20 because they must be older than our cadets, but there is no upper age limit after that.

How many times a week does the Squadron meet?

The Squadron has two Parade Nights a week on Monday & Friday evenings from 1830 - 2130. Cadets are expected to turn up regularly to these as they're when the bulk of cadet training & education takes place, as well as where they can sign up for the extended activities, find out information direct and aid their advancement though their cadet service. We do break the programme up with things like fun nights, sports & one-off activities as well.

As an active squadron, we also have many weekend activities, and during the school holidays we extend our programme to include weekday activities.

Meeting times, location and other information are displayed at squadron. A timetable of our activities can be found here.

What about during school term time? 

Occasionally weekday activities do take place during term time (such as available flying slots), though we will always seek permission from the cadet's school to allow them to attend and limit the number of times they can do so. These activities will always be of educational opportunity or part of a major competition or training programme and not simply something 'fun' we want to do.

Do I have to come every Monday and Friday night?

We'd like you to attend as regularly as possible, especially when you first join as we have a training programme you need to undertake before you are enrolled. The less you attend the longer this will take. Once you have been enrolled you continue your intake training until you complete first class. We run a rolling training programme so the lessons will come around again and we do occasionally run weekend catch up days, but missing a parade night may mean missing part or whole of a lesson, which will delay completion of your initial training programme.

From joining to the end of this initial training programme should take around 3 months, with enrolment taking place around 6 weeks from joining, provided attendance has been regular. After that there's further levels of training that will require a bit more commitment and attendance.

How much does it cost?

Our squadron runs on a subs fee which is £10 a month per cadet/family. This can be paid monthly or as a lump sum for half the year or whole year. Cash, cheque or standing order.

We also fundraise to help subsidise costs wherever possible. Most activities are free but things like annual camps, some training exercises and Dining In do incur a fee. Visits to activities and places outside of the ATC may also have a cost, though we’ll seek a discount where we can. These include places like adventure parks, air shows, historical trips and other fun days out.

Basic uniform is free, though things like parade shoes and stable belts need to be purchased by the cadet. More information is given in the welcome talk.

Our Squadron runs a Cadet Credit Scheme (£CCS) where cadets who help raise money for the Squadron through things like bag packing and scout post can earn money they can then use towards activities or special purchases.

When would I get a uniform?

When you've been enrolled [1]. Until then either school uniform or smart white shirt, black trousers and black shoes are to be worn for all parade nights and events attended in uniform.

You will receive basic uniform which includes trousers (& skirt for girls), a light blue shirt (wedgewood), dark blue shirt (working blue), tie, jumper, brassard beret with badge & flight flash. A waterproof coat will be available for loan when possible.

Things like parade shoes, army boots, DPM greens (cammoflage) & stable belts will have to be brought by you. This can be done through sqn. 

[1] Uniform issuing will also depend on availability from central stores, which may cause some delays.

Can Parents/Guardians get involved as well?

YES YOU CAN! Parents/guardians of our Cadets can get involved in a number of ways.

Firstly just by being their for your Cadet. They may need transport to the sqn or a particular event or a few quid to pay for an activity. Don't worry about ironing their clothes and polishing their shoes though as domestic skills is also something they will learn from us and should be putting into practice. By the time they finish with us they should hopefully be more independent than most young people.

Secondly you can get involved with certain Squadron activities, including things like Scout Post at Christmas and other fundraising events. Don't forget we also have a couple of presentation evenings each year where you can come along and see your cadet receive any awards and certificates they've earned.

Thirdly we have a Civilian Committee which looks after the welfare of our cadets and finances and fundraising. You can request to join that if you think you can help to run this.

Finally you can also join as a Civilian Instructor. You don't need to have had any previous Air Cadet experience, though you may have to put up with your cadet feeling embarrassed about you being there (which, being a cadet, they should train themselves to rise above).

For more information or to discuss any of the above, contact the sqn

There are 3 Squadrons in Cardiff, why join 1344?

1344 has a long standing reputation of being the biggest and most active squadron in Cardiff, partially thanks to its central location and dedicated and capable staff and cadets. However there’s nothing wrong with joining the Squadron closer to you for the convenience, or because there are cadets there who are your friends or from your school.

30F (City of Llandaff) is based at the TA centre in Llandaff. It is Cardiff’s original squadron and the current 1344’s parent squadron. Originally it was based in Ely and known as 30F (Cardiff). It served the west side of the city but moved to Llandaff and merged with 2213 (City of Llandaff). Their website is temporarily unavailable

2213 (Rumney), is located in Llanstephan Rd Rumney. Opening in 2010 as our Detached Flight it has since become a full Squadron in its own right, serving the east side of Cardiff. Their website is temporarily unavailable

But back to the original question. Not only is 1344 the biggest Squadron in Cardiff but also the Wing, Wales, and one of the biggest in the corps.

Chances are if you've seen Air Cadets at events around Cardiff it is our cadets you’re seeing. In a typical year we’ll run the equivalent of over 450 days worth of activities from adventures to sports, shooting, community and charity work and more (based on days with more than one activity running). In fact most weekends are taken up with at least one activity so there’s plenty to do and many rewards to reap from doing them. We have cadets from all over Cardiff, and even further afield, joining us because of the things we do.

With our new building opened in June 2013 we've got new opportunities and some new facilities available. The building is wheelchair accessible (as will our Simrod Mk 4 be) and suited to our dynamic and active programme.

Every ATC squadron runs following the corps general guidelines and participate in most of the core activities available. In addition to this they add their own unique activities timetable, depending on what they like doing and what they have available in resources and their location.

All three Cardiff Squadrons do come together for major events such as Armed Forces Day & Remembrance Parades, and do run or participate in many activities together, and with other Squadrons from around No.1 Welsh Wing and even the rest of the country, so no matter which one you join, you'll still get a chance to meet other cadets from other places.

More FAQs can be found here* on the main Air Cadets website.

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