About

216 (Redditch) Squadron

216 (Redditch) Squadron is based at the Army Reserve Centre in Redditch, and serves the areas of Redditch, Bromsgrove and further afield.

216 Redditch Squadron was formed in 1984 and has a long proud history within West Mercian and also the Wales and West region. The squadron is based at the Army Reserve Centre in Winyates, Redditch and operates 50 weeks a year. With a strength of 40+ cadets and a determined professional staff team the Squadron has loads of opportunities for its members ranging from flying to shooting to sport.

In 2019 we were nominated as one of the Top 6 Small Squadron’s in the country, we firmly believe we are one of the best units nationwide.

‘Semper Ad Sequitur’ – Always Achieves

‘Semper Ad Sequitur’; this is our Squadrons motto and means ‘always achieves’; its something the cadets and staff endeavour to live by. We want to get the most out the opportunities offered, and to always come away with the best results. Be that going for gold at competitions, or making sure cadets get some amazing experiences, it’s what really makes this the organisation to be part of.

As a member of the Squadron you’ll take part in local activities on the unit on parade nights. Dotted throughout the year you’ll get a chance to go on visits to camps, try your hand at kayaking, hill walking, camping, caving, mountain biking, offshore sailing and winter sports to name just a few. Our activities are challenging, and we’ll always push you to get the most out of what’s available.

It’s not just training in the UK either. We’ve recently run expeditions to India, the Alps, Cyprus, South Africa & Everest Base Camp!

Meet the Staff

Our volunteers are the inspirational connection between the organisation and our cadets. All Air Cadet Squadrons are run by Adult volunteers, from all walks of life.

Some are ex-cadets, some ex-forces and some joined when their child joined as a cadet, but all have a desire to make the cadet experience a great one. All our staff are fully trained and qualified in the activities they run, and all are strictly checked through the Disclosure and Barring Service, along with internal security checks.

Squadron Leader Kylie Cheston RAFAC

Officer Commanding

Sqn Ldr Cheston joined the Air Training Corps in September 1995 at 216 Redditch Squadron. Achieving her gold D of E and rising to the rank of Cadet Warrant Officer Sqn Ldr Cheston remained on the Squadron until commissioned in the RAFAC in 2003.

Sqn Ldr Cheston took command as Acting OC of 216 in February 2008, taking over as Officer Commanding in October 2008. In May 2017 she took on the role of West Mercian Wings Training Officer and was promoted to Squadron Leader. Sqn Ldr Cheston is a qualified Range Conducting Officer, Weapons Instructor and also holds expedition and first aid qualifications. She also runs the D of E Scheme on the Squadron. Sqn Ldr Cheston is also West Mercian Wings Training Officer, responsible for all training in over 27 Squadrons.

Warrant Officer Nick Lyons RAFAC

Squadron Warrant Officer, Adjutant & Media Officer

WO Lyons joined the Squadron in 2003. He remained at 216 for 7 years as a cadet, rising to the rank Cadet Warrant Officer. He was appointed as a Squadron SNCO in 2010 in the rank of Sergeant. In August 2014 he was promoted to the rank of Flight Sergeant. In May 2018 he was promoted to Warrant Officer, the highest rank an adult Senior NCO can obtain.

WO Lyons is currently the Adjutant on the squadron along with radio training and ground based classification training. He is also the Squadron WO, responsible along with the rest of the SNCO staff team for drill dress and discipline within the Squadron. He is also the Squadron Media and Communications Officer, maintaining the squadron IT equipment, website and marketing material. He is also West Mercian Wings Webmaster.

Sergeant Heather Quinney RAFAC

First Class Training & Ground Training Instructor

Sergeant Quinney joined the Squadron at the start of 2012. She undertook her silver D of E award with the Squadron and successfully qualified in Youth First Aid. Sgt Quinney also completed her BTEC in Aviation Studies and qualified as an Instructor cadet, having passed her Method of Instruction course. Throughout her cadet career she was promoted to Corporal and then Sergeant. In August 2015 Sgt Quinney was appointed as a member of staff on 216 Squadron in the rank of Sergeant.

Sgt Quinney is a ground training instructor who works with the other members of staff and undertakes classification training with all Junior and First Class Cadets. She is also a qualified shooting coach, and holds a number of expedition qualifications.

Sergeant Alife Pavitt RAFAC

Shooting, Sport & Ground Training Instructor

Sergeant Pavitt joined 216 Squadron as a cadet towards the end of 2008. During his time on the Squadron he undertook First Aid training, completed his BTEC in Aviation Studies and qualified as a Instructor cadet. He also completed his Gold D of E at the end of his cadet career. Sgt Pavitt progressed to the rank of Flight Sergeant during his time as a cadet. He then spent a short time as a CI and in August 2015 was appointed as a member of staff on 216 Squadron in the rank of Sergeant.

Sgt Pavitt is responsible for shooting training on the Squadron along with the sports activities the Squadron takes part in. He is a ground training instructor, assisting in engineering and radio projects. He is also a qualified Shooting coach & Range Conducting Officer.

Sergeant Berkeley Hodge RAFAC

Drill Instructor, Bandmaster & Ground Training Instructor

Sergeant Hodge joined 216 Squadron as a cadet in June 2009. Sgt Hodge took an active role in the Squadron, successfully completing his classification training to the highest level and qualified as an Instructor Cadet. He also completed first aid training, attended annual camps and led the banner team and drill squad at a number of Wing events. Sgt Hodge progressed to the rank of Cadet Warrant Officer, the highest rank achievable for a cadet, by the end of his time as a cadet in the Squadron. He was appointed as a member of staff in March 2016 in the rank of Sergeant.

Sgt Hodge is responsible for the Squadron band as Bandmaster, along with working as a ground training instructor, assisting with classification training. In early 2019 he qualified as a Drill Instructor at RAF Cranwell, and is now responsible for drill training on the Squadron.

Sergeant Jack Birch RAFAC

Ground Training Instructor

Sgt Birch joined the Squadron as a cadet in 2011. He remained on 216 Squadron taking an active role, attaining the rank of Cadet Sergeant and completing his Master Cadet Classification Training. He also completed his Gold Duke of Edinburgh award, undertaking his residential section by sailing around Scotland on a 72 foot ketch. Sgt Birch works with the other staff and ground training instructor.

Civilian Instructor Adam Marthews

Ground Training Instructor

Civilian Instructor Marthews joined the Squadron in May 2018, after having been a cadet on the Squadron in the late 90’s early 2000’s. CI Marthews works with the other staff and ground training instructor.

Reverend Stephen Levett

Squadron Padre

Reverend Levitt is currently the Chaplain for 216 Squadron offering Moral Guidance and Support to the Cadets on the Unit, he also helps to teach the Core Values of the RAF (Respect, Integrity, Service and Excellence).

As a unique role in the organisation, our chaplains provide appropriate pastoral care for all personnel within the Air Cadets, irrespective of religious belief or status.

Rev Levitt joined the Squadron in 2012 and leads a regular Padre’s hour on the Squadron along with enrolling new cadets. Squadron Chaplin’s are fully supported by the RAF Chaplain’s Branch.