Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation

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Air Vice-Marshal G C Cairns (57721)

Geoffrey Crerar                        b: 21 May 1926                       r: 21 May 1980        d: 6 Feb 2009

CBE 13 Jun 1970, AFC 1 Jan 1960, FRAeS - 1979.

Plt Off: 22 Feb 1946, Fg Off: 22 Feb 1947, Flt Lt: 22 Aug 1949, Sqn Ldr: 1 Jul 1956, Wg Cdr: 1 Jul 1961, Gp Capt: 1 Jul 1966, Act A/Cdre: 8 Jun 1970, A/Cdre: 1 Jan 1971, Act AVM: 7 Dec 1974?, AVM: 1 Jan 1975.

xx xxx 1944:     U/T Pilot, ?

xx xxx 1946:     Pilot, No 43 Sqn. (Spitfire IXc)

xx xxx 1947:     Pilot, No 73 Sqn.

15 Jul 1948:     Appointed to a Permanent Commission in the rank of Flying Officer

xx xxx 1949:     Flight Commander, No 72 Sqn. (Vampire F3/FB5)

xx xxx xxxx:      Attended QFI Course, Central Flying School

xx xxx 1952:     QFI, No ? FTS.

xx Aug 1953:    Adjutant, Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force.

xx xxx 1956:     Attended Course No 15, Empire Test Pilot's School.

xx xxx 1957:     Test pilot, A. & A.E.E.

22 Aug 1961:   Member, Joint Planning Staff.

xx xxx xxxx:     Attended Helicopter Pilots Course.

xx xxx 1963:     Chief Helicopter Instructor, Central Flying School (Tern Hill).

23 Mar 1964:   Officer i/c Flying, RAF Ternhill.

xx Jan 1966:     Attended Joint Service Staff College.

26 Aug 1966:    Deputy Director, Directorate of Operational Requirements (3)

15 Dec 1967:   Superintendent of Flying, A. & A.E.E.

 8 Jun 1970:     Director of Defence Operational Requirements.

12 Aug 1972:   Commandant, A. & A.E.E.

 7 Dec 1974:    Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Operational Requirements).

13 Oct 1976:    Commander, Southern Maritime Air Region.

 7 Mar 1978:    SASO, No 18 Group.

 7 Mar 1978:   Chief of Staff, HQ Commander Maritime Air Eastern Atlantic Area.

 7 Mar 1978:   Chief of Staff, HQ Maritime Air Channel Command.


Joining the RAF too late to see operational service in WW2, he joined No 43 Sqn in Italy in 1946 and later moved to No 73 Sqn in Malta, initially equipped with Spitfire F22's but soon replaced by jets in the form of Vampire F3's. 

During his time at A & AEE he flew trials involving the Hunter, Swift and Javelin as well as their associated unguided and guided weapons and towards the end of 1957 he was appointed as the Project Officer for the English Electric Lightning and later also carried out trials on the Folland Gnat, which was rejected as a fighter but was redesigned to become the RAF's advanced fast jet trainer.  As Superintendent of Flying at Boscombe Down, he was involved in the testing of three Anglo-French helicopter projects as well as work on the Harrier, Phantom and Buccaneer.  On his third tour at Boscombe as Commandant of A & AEE, he worked on the new Tornado.

Retiring from the RAF at his own request, he joined Marconi Avionics as a Consultant but left there to become a Director of Trago Aircraft Ltd in 1982 until 1987. In 1992 he became a Consultant to FLS Aerospace (Lovaux) Ltd.

This page was last updated on 08/06/17 using FrontPage 2003

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