January 24th 2017

Newark Air Cadets complete history project

History & Heritage of 1260 Squadron

The book's title

1260 (Newark and District) Squadron of the Air Training Corps have completed a project to research the history of the unit since its foundation in March 1941 that has led to the production of a book, DVD and website.

The squadron was successful in applying for funds from the Heritage Lottery Fund – Young Roots programme and Newark Youth Trust for the publications that outline how the unit began and developed up to the present day.

With the assistance of project partners, the Magnus School, where the squadron was formed, Newark and Sherwood Museum Service, and the Newark Advertiser, current cadets traced former squadron members who gave them photographs and told stories on camera of their time with the unit.

Amongst those interviewed by current Air Cadets was Jack Oliver who was present on the squadron’s very first parade, weeks after the Air Training Corps formed. He went on to serve during and after the Second World War as a pilot, in the Royal Air Force and is still connected to Newark Air Cadets as a member of the civilian committee.

Charles Neville Shereston joined in 1942 and spoke about how cadets regarded this as the obvious route to joining the RAF and perhaps becoming a fighter pilot.

Roddy Dickinson, who joined Newark Air Cadets in 1960, recollected how he had always shown an interest in flying and joining Air Cadets was a natural course for him to take. Roddy said that being an Air Cadet significantly influenced his professional life having taught him how to present himself, how to respect others and gave him confidence. He also recalled how Newark Air Cadets were the best in its Wing at drill.

Also interviewed was the squadron’s current Commanding Officer, Flight Lieutenant Martin Derbyshire who was himself a Newark Air Cadet, joining in 1997.  Martin said: “ On 5 February 1941 King George V1 signed the Royal Warrant creating the Air Training Corps, including 1260 Squadron based in Newark, and our Royal Warrant remains proudly on display at our headquarters building on Sherwood Avenue in Newark.

“75 years to the date since the Royal Warrant was signed, Newark Air Cadets celebrated the anniversary with a dinner at Kelham Hall, Newark.  This special occasion included the first public showing of a short film made by current Air Cadets featuring former Air Cadets telling the story of our group from inception to the present day.”

You can order a copy of the book or DVD for free. To request copies email

More details may be found on the squadron’s web site.

"Current cadets traced former squadron members who gave them photographs and told stories on camera of their time with the unit."