Author Topic: R A F ranks  (Read 153 times)

Offline Brentor boy

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R A F ranks
« on: Tuesday 22 September 20 09:02 BST (UK) »
In his book "An Expendable Squadron", Roy Conyers Nesbit briefly describes his enlistment into the RAF in 1940. This includes the statement " At Uxbridge........ we were all promoted to the rank of Leading Aircraftman,  equivalent to the rank of Lance Corporal in the British army"
From personal experience I am aware this was most certainly not the case in the 1960s. Were things so very different in 1940?

Offline KGarrad

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Re: R A F ranks
« Reply #1 on: Tuesday 22 September 20 09:45 BST (UK) »
My father did his National Service in the RAF as a Leading Aircraftsman, 2nd Class.
In his own words, that was because there wasn't a 3rd Class! ;D

From Wikipedia:
There were three grades: leading aircraftman (LAC), aircraftman 1st class (AC1) and aircraftman 2nd class.
The lowest grade was an AC2; also colloquially known as an "AC plonk". With effect from 1 April 1964, the gradings of AC1 and AC2 were abolished, with "aircraftman" becoming the entry rank.
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Offline Brentor boy

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Re: R A F ranks
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 23 September 20 08:49 BST (UK) »
I had hoped to stimulate critical scrutiny of the assertion that the rank of LAC was equivalent to that of L/Cpl.

I suppose that, prior to the introduction of the rank of Senior Aircraftman/ woman (SAC/W) in 1951, it could be argued that both ranks were immediately inferior to that of Corporal but, as an N C O, a L/Cpl surely possessed status and authority that obviated any equivalence to an LAC.

Or have I got it all wrong?


Offline KGarrad

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Re: R A F ranks
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 23 September 20 09:05 BST (UK) »
LAC and SAC have a NATO rating of OR-2.
L/Cpl has a NATO rating of OR-3.

An RAF Corporal had a NATO rating of OR-4.
Lance corporal was only used in the RAF Regiment, and was introduced in 2010?

See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_other_ranks
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Offline Brentor boy

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Re: R A F ranks
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 23 September 20 09:19 BST (UK) »
Thanks.

Looking at the "Origins" section of the site you linked, it is stated that when created in 1918, the rank of Leading Aircraftman was equivalent in rank and authority to that of Lance Corporal in the Army.

One lives and learns!