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24 Intake Skunks 1970

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Intake Organiser: Dutchy Holland EMAIL HERE  or 0499 229911

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Number 24 Engineer Apprentice Intake formed at the RAAF School of Technical Training located at RAAF Base Wagga on 10th January 1970.

About 120 fifteen and sixteen year old boys from Australia, and two from New Zealand, commenced initial training on 12 January 1970 in six training flights formed by grouping members in alphabetical order. The first ten weeks of training comprised subjects normally completed by all recruits entering the RAAF- drill, general service knowledge, character development, weapons training and more during this time we also undertook refresher training in Mathematics, Physics and English to prepare us for our initial trade training.


The highlight of initial training was a trip to RAAF Base Williamtown by C130 Hercules designed to assist us in selecting our preferred trade for Stage 2 of the training. A lesser highlight was being ‘rumbled’ by members of No 23 Intake one Saturday night early in the training. As a consequence they were made to ‘panic’ (clean to within an inch of life) our accommodation blocks while we went  to the pool for a swim. Not good for inter-intake relations!


At the end of 10 weeks of initial training, we progressed to basic trade training comprising machine shop, welding, blacksmithing and just learning basic hand skills. Basic hand skill training involved inordinate time in the Basic Fitting

Hangar trying to file blocks of metal into smaller, much squarer blocks of metal, that were then scraped to make them perfectly flat. The only relief to that tedium came in visits to the ‘Basic Club’ (toilets across the road) to read the graffiti that had accumulated on its walls since 1940.

We marched and marched

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Graduating Apprentices

Our Apprenticeships were done

but the Friendships remain forever

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