I had never had any interest in, or appreciation of, bagpipe music until I joined the RAF as an Aircraft Apprentice at the age of 16, in 1958. I served a three-year full-time Apprenticeship at RAF Halton, near Aylesbury, and found that RAF Halton was the centre of bagpipe music training for the RAF, with there being three full-size pipe and drum bands, all manned by Apprentices. One of my first RAF memories is that of the “Hoovers” being tuned in the early morning Autumnal mists during my first term at Halton, with the sounds echoing back from the Buckinghamshire beeches which cover the Chiltern hills which surround half of the camp.Read more »
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