From Cadet to Fast Jet Pilot

We joined Wing Commander Simon Batt, Commanding Officer of IX(B) Squadron RAF flying the Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4 , ex cadet of 305 (Ashford) Squadron.

Many who join the RAF Air Cadets go on to join the forces. On Thursday 23rd July cadets from across Kent were joined by Wing Commander Simon Batt, Officer Commanding IX(B) Squadron RAF.

Wing Commander Batt took command of No. 9 Squadron on 2nd May 2019, transforming it from a Tornado GR.4 Squadron into a Typhoon FGR4 Squadron.

As an aspiring pilot this talk has enabled me to deeply understand the various instruments and intricacies of the typhoon whilst also allowing me to better understand the thrilling but challenging life of an raf pilot. 

FS Salami, 213 (City of Rochester) Sqn
Wg Cdr Batt formally taking command of IX(B) Squadron

As a young boy, Wg Cdr Batt had a passion for aviation so joined his local Air Training Corps Squadron in Ashford where he enjoyed flying the de Havilland Chipmunks at Air Experience Flight (AEF) Squadrons.

Cadet Simon Batt seen carrying the 305 (Ashford) Squadron Banner

Wg Cdr Batt was successful in gaining a RAF Scholarship through his A-Levels and University and then went on to join the Royal Air Force.

Having completed his officer training, Wg Cdr Batt faced a hurdle during his pilot training in that he discovered he suffered from air sickness. This did not deter him however and over a few years of flight training he overcame the air sickness. In fact, he performed so well during his flight training that he was selected to become an instructor on the Hawk which he undertook for 3 years.

After instructing on the Hawk, Wg Cdr Batt then moved to 54 Sqn, flying the Jaguar in a ground attack and close air support role. Only 2 years later saw Wg Cdr Batt transferring again, this time into 3 (Fighter) Squadron and the Operational Conversion Unit, flying the brand new Eurofighter Typhoon.

The talk was an exciting and unique insight into the life of a fast jet pilot, the role of the Typhoon, and the equipment a pilot uses.

FS Strand, 129 (Royal Tunbridge Wells) Squadron