UPDATES.

RAAF Radchool Association's Celebration.

100th Anniversary of the Air Force.

 

12 April, 2018.

 

Allan George and I met with the RAAF's 2021 organising committee (leaving names out) in Russell Offices in Canberra to discuss our plans for the Celebration and to learn of the RAAF's official intentions. It seems the dates we have planned will have to be changed (again) as the RAAF has a large official function planned for the 31st March 2021 (The actual Anniversary day) which will be held in Canberra and at which the RAAF's Band will be required.

 

The Avalon Airshow, at which the RAAF will have a very large presence, is usually held late in Feb, early in March so the week prior to our original dates (15th to the 24th March) could be available but as Easter Sunday in 2021 falls on the 4th April, the immediate week after is no good. We could perhaps go for the following week, 8th April to the 17th April.

 

The earlier period (15 - 24March) is not really suitable as it will conflict with the Melbourne GP - making accommodation very expensive, but there is not a lot on in Melbourne around the latter time (08 - 17April). We checked with the Melbourne Visitor Centre in Federation Square and that week we would only conflict with the Comedy Festival which shouldn't worry us too much.  School holidays in Melbourne during that period will be 01 April -  19 April. That could be a benefit - cheaper accommodation, less traffic.

 

One concern the RAAF had was they did not want us to represent as being the official RAAF Celebration, though they have no quarrel with us organising as the Radschool Association's Celebration - we have and will continue to do that.

 

The RAAF has not planned an Open Day at Point Cook so that won't happen, unfortunately.

 

 

 

17 - 21 April, 2018.

 

Band.

I had several meetings in Melbourne that week. First up was at Laverton to see and hear the band. They allowed me to sit in during one of their practice jazz sessions and if you've never seen or heard the band in full cry, you're missing something, they are fantastic. With them and the Army and Navy bands providing the entertainment for the Sunday we, along with the people of Melbourne, are in for a wonderful treat.

 

Army and Navy Bands.

I've spoken with the ADF's Joint Operations Support people in Melbourne re asking for the Army and Navy Bands for the Sunday event. They have given me a form which I have to fill in asking for the "Assets". We'll wait until we confirm the dates before filling it out.

 

Hangars.

After Laverton it was over the road to Point Cook to see the XO of 21 Sqn who generously gave an hour or so of his time and showed me around the Base. We were hoping to hold the "Meet and Greet" and the "Farewell Dinner" in one of the hangars at either Laverton or Pt Cook but we couldn't find anything suitable, most were either not big enough or were condemned or were being used. We've got an inquiry into the Melbourne Show-grounds to see what they have available and at what cost. More on that later.

 

We did discuss using some hard stand areas at Point Cook for bus assembly for the day out events and that looks promising.

 

Channel 7

I had an appointment with one of the Execs at Channel 7 in Melbourne to discuss the station's thoughts on televising the Sunday event at the Myer Bowl but unfortunately we couldn't hold a face to face meeting as he was preparing for an overseas trip to cover the Villers-Bretonneux event but we did have a phone hook-up. He said he has studied our plans for the Sunday event (at the Bowl) and without committing anything, at this stage CH 7 are very interested. We left it at that and will continue to liaise with him.

 

Shirt

I went out to Summit Safety in Bayswater to see them about a Celebratory shirt which everyone who attends will receive. It's got the Radschool Crest on the left (no pocket though) and the words "RAAF Radschool Association, 100 year Anniversary of the RAAF" on the right sleeve. This is the shirt, it's not confirmed but it's a start.

 

AFL.

I met with the Head of Broadcasting and Scheduling at AFL House in Melbourne and in memory of the RAAF being stationed at the MCG during WW2, asked whether it would/could be possible for the AFL to make available sufficient free seats for all at the Radschool Celebration to watch a game at the "G". Although not promised, this request was received very favourably - more on this later. And - thinking along the same lines, we also discussed the possibility of a RAAF style CEO sleep-out where current and ex-members of the RAAF could sleep rough for one night at the "G" in memory of and similar to the RAAF bods during the war. The AFL could not OK this request as they don't have control over the MCG, it has to be submitted to the MCG trust - but it looks hopeful.  Any and all proceeds raised from this event will be given to a charity.

 

RAAFA

We saw Carl Schiller, the National President of the RAAF Association. If/when the Sunday event goes ahead there will be possibly 10,000 people at the Music Bowl, all of whom will be looking for a program, a soft drink, something to eat, etc, (the Bowl people have the liquor licence and sell the alcohol) but the RAAFA supports several charities and we discussed whether they could involve these charities to provide people to sell programs, food and drink and raise much needed funds.  More on that later too.

 

 

We're still some years away from the event but the cogs turn slowly - we'll be ready when it happens.

 

 

 

 

23 April 2018.

 

We've heard from the Melbourne Show-ground, they have this facility below under construction which will be finished mid 2019. As we're expecting about 1,000 people, this looks perfect for our Registration/Meet and Greet and for the farewell dinner. Train service is available right to the door.

 

There is an excellent possibility that we will get the building rent free, paying only for catering. Drinks will be available at cost.

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

14 May 2018

 

We've received approval from the Melbourne Showgrounds for us to hold a "Sleep Rough" night at the Showgrounds as part of the celebration. There will be more on this later but it will be open to all ex and current serving RAAF people, both male and female. We'll encourage you to get sponsorship and all funds raised will go to the RAAF Association which will donate them to one of their charities.

 

We'll organise the food and drink (water) - all you'll need to do is bring something to keep you warm as you'll be sleeping in the open in one of the Showground stands or somewhere else as directed by the Showground management.

 

02 October 2018

 

We heard back from the ADF's JOSS (Joint Operations Support Staff) which is the outfit that you have to go through to ask for ADF assets (to organise a fly-over, to book the bands etc). They have told me their calendar does not yet cover the year 2021 and won't until July 2019 - so, we can't confirm anything until then.

 

Rest assured, on the 1st July we will re-submit our request for the Army, Navy, Air Force bands for the Sunday Concert.

 

Unfortunately, everything is now on hold until then.

 

 

 

 
 
 

 

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