‘Major’ surprise for Batley Grammar School pupils as pilot arrives in a helicopter

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Members of Batley Grammar School’s Combined Cadet Force were inspired by a ‘flying’ visit from a former pupil who is now a senior army officer.

Major Philip Goodier, a instructor in the Army Air Corps who now teaches trainee pilots to fly, caused huge excitement when he arrived in a helicopter to conduct the annual inspection of the school corps last week.

The Major, who left the school in 1998, gave an address to cadets before watching a March Past ceremony and holding a review of the training programme. Cadets demonstrated archery skills, command tasks, drill and a concealment and observation exercise to the decorated soldier.

The 19 pupils were then given ten-minute flights in the helicopter, which had earlier landed in the school grounds at Carlinghow Hill.

Major Goodier belonged to the CCF during his time at the school, reaching the rank of cadet sergeant. He also played football for the first XI and was a member of the school orchestra.

The visit was a great opportunity for teenagers to learn more about life in the armed forces as well as the chance to meet a successful alumnus of Batley Grammar School.

The CCF at the school is open to pupils in years 9-13 and aims to teach social intelligence, leadership, resilience, grit and self-control to students who are aiming for both military and civilian career paths.