Home' Air Force News : September 1st 2011 Contents Battle of Britain Church Service
at St David's Cathedral, Hobart
September 10: The Air
Force Wind Quintet and the
Ceremonial Band will support
the annual Battle of Britain
Dinner in Hobart from 7pm.
September 11: The
Ceremonial Band will sup-
port the annual Battle of
Britain Service at the Hobart
Cenotaph from 10.30am.
To confirm dates and tim-
ings, call (03) 9256 2514.
September 7: Battle
for Australia in
September 18: Battle of Britain in
For information on events, visit
September 16: Australian Teenage
September 18: 315SQN
For more, visit the 'Air
Force Balloon' page on
September 1 2011
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your future workforce?
Have you considered offering
placements through the Defence Work
This Program provides opportunities to
students to experience the ADF or
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Send enquiries to:
Battle of Britain in
Battle of Britain in
September 18: RAAF
Band will sup-
port the 76SQN
Freedom of the
City Parade in Glen Innes, NSW.
September 10: The Low Brass
Ensemble will provide music for the
Air Force on show
AUGUST 13, 1921, was the day
the Royal Australian Air Force
gained Royal assent.
On that day the Governor-
General signed an order approving the
Ninety years later, RAAF historian
Dr Chris Clark looks back on a his-
tory of the RAAF's founding that he
rates as "quite interesting."
"It involves several dates that
could be considered the RAAF's
birthday," Dr Clark said.
"During WWI, the squadrons of
the Australian Flying Corps (AFC)
were part of the Australian Imperial
Force and were attached to the larger
British formations of the Royal Flying
Corps and, from 1918, the Royal Air
During WWI, air power had
clearly demonstrated that it was an
essential fighting element to any mili-
A right Royal day
tary force and the Australian Flying
Corps (AFC) had demonstrated that
it was the equal of the air arms of any
As part of the international dis-
armament program, in 1919 the
AFC -- an Army-managed unit of the
Australian Imperial Force -- was dis-
banded and there followed a period of
considerable debate and negotiation
between Army, the Royal Australian
Navy and the new Defence organisa-
tion as to what Australia's future air
arm should best be.
The debate had in fact started in
1917 and centred on whether the new
force should be another air corps,
again under Army command or a new,
completely independent air force.
In January 1920, an interim solu-
tion was found when the Australian
Air Corps was formed but on March
31, 1921, it was disbanded and
the order signed by the Governor-
General on August 13 approving the
'Royal' title, was published in the
Consequently, it was that day
and not June 20 upon which the new
RAAF took its first steps on its jour-
ney to become the service that has
served Australia well in war and peace
over the subsequent 90 years.
replaced by a new, completely inde-
pendent service; the Australian Air
In February that year, even as the
new service prepared to take its place
in Australia's military history, the Air
Council proposed that the new service
should called be the Royal Australian
Air Force and wrote to the UK
requesting the king grant the title.
Permission was not long coming
and on May 11, British Secretary of
State for Air Winston Churchill wrote
to the Governor-General of Australia,
Lord Forster, and informed him that
His Majesty had "been graciously
pleased" to approve the request.
For some reason, however,
the Defence Department was not
informed of the decision until June 20
and, although the newspapers reported
the granting of the title just three days
later, it was not until August 18 that
EUROPE: CAPT Reg Francis, AFC 3SQN pilot, with
his RE8 in Europe during WWI.
Right, AFC gunnery
class with a Lewis
gun in the Middle
East during WWI.
PALESTINE: 1SQN AFC 2 SE 5A on the ground in Palestine in WWI.
Photos courtesy RAAF Museum
Stepping stones in
a glorious history
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