PGAC Joining Instructions

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1. Attendance. You have been nominated to attend a Potential Gunner Acquaintance Course (PGAC) commencing at Royal Air Force Barnham for four days.

2. Course Aim. The aim of the PGAC is to select potential Gunners to the Royal Air Force Regiment and to inform them of the nature and content of the Trainee Gunner initial training course and the fitness standards required of Regiment personnel. If you have not already seen the RAF Regiment video, contact your AFCO Staff to watch the video before you attend your PGAC Course.

3. Travel. Royal Air Force Barnham is situated in Suffolk, 12 miles north of Bury St Edmunds. The easiest method of travel to RAF Barnham is by train, with the nearest railway station located at Bury St Edmunds. You will be collected by coach and moved to Royal Air Force Barnham at 2100 hours on the first day of the course. If living locally you must travel to RAF Barnham on this transport. If for any reason you fail to make this transport you are to contact the PGAC administration cell on 01359 237550 or 07799695283, who will advise you further. Candidates who arrive after 2100 are to contact PGAC Staff in the first instance. If you are advised to make your own way to RAF Barnham by taxi (ensure you get a taxi receipts for this journey as without it you will not be reimbursed) and report to the Main Guardroom RAF Barnham.Average cost for the journey is £12 - £15 (before midnight & not including Bank Holidays). Candidates are not permitted to bring their own vehicles.

4. Accommodation. Accommodation space at Royal Air Force Barnham is limited before and after the course. Where possible, you are to arrive at Bury St Edmunds Railway Station on the day of the course and await collection by the shuttle service.

5. Course Content. Your visit to the Depot will last from Monday evening to the Thursday afternoon. You will depart by approximately 1500 hours on the last day of the course. The Potential Gunner Acquaintance Course will consist of:

a. Briefings about the Royal Air Force Regiment and the Trainee Gunner Course.

b. Physical Assessments and familiarisations which you will be expected to attempt your Maximum Effort:

(1) Multi Stage Fitness Test (minimum 9.01) 

(2) Maximum Sit-up in one minute (minimum 25).

(3) Maximum Press-up in one minute (minimum 10). 

(4) Swim assessment, 50m (any front stroke).

(5) Physical Education Skirmish Exercise.

(6) Three mile run - 1.5 miles in 13 minutes, 30 seconds for water and 1.5 miles best effort in 10 minutes 30 seconds.

(7) Assault Course Test (minimum 5 minutes 15 seconds). 

Remeber these are the minimum standards you must reach to be considered for selection, attaining them is not a guarantee of selection.

c. Educational Assessments.

During the Course, you will be required to take part in both gym and outdoor physical tests and a team exercise that will test your initiative as an individual and your ability to work as a member of a team. The Course has been designed to give you a good insight into the world of a Royal Air Force Regiment Gunner and what is expected of you during basic training and beyond. If you are ill or injure yourself before attending your PGAC, contact your AFCO Staff and ask them to book you onto a later Course.

6. Legal Aspects.

The MOD considers claims on the basis of its legal liability in common law, which means that liability for compensation for injury or loss will be accepted where it can be shown that the MOD, its servants or agents have acted negligently in the course of their official duty.

7. Equipment Required. Potential Gunner Acquaintance Course Students are required to bring the following personal items for use during the course:

a. Gym/running shoes, shorts and shirt, sport socks, shower kit and towel.

b. Personal washing and shaving kit.

c. Swimming trunks and towel. (Swimming trunks rather than shorts are preferable)

d. One passport size photograph

e. Loss of Earnings Claim Form as issued by AFCO.

f. Sturdy boots. These should be military-type high leg black boots with no steel toe caps (preferably with heel and ankle support) well used prior to PGAC. We have a very limited supply of various sized service issue boots which personnel can use for the duration of the course.

g. 2 pairs of thick socks.

Any further equipment required will be supplied to you for the duration of your visit.

8. Dress. On arrival at Royal Air Force Barnham, you should be dressed in a smart and presentable manner in shirt, trousers and tie (no jeans or training shoes). Jeans and other casual clothing may be worn during your recreation time at Royal Air Force Barnham. Furthermore, the dress codes of the Royal Air Force state that Airmen should not wear any form of jewellery except for a wristwatch and/or a plain ring (wedding). During your Potential Gunner Acquaintance Course you are to refrain from wearing jewellery such as earrings, necklaces or nose rings/studs etc. For reasons of safety please remove any body piercing.

9. Correspondence. All correspondence regarding your visit should initially be made to your sponsor, i.e. your Senior Careers Liaison Officer (SCLO), Careers Liaison Officer (CLO) or Armed Forces Careers Office (AFCO) concerned. However, if required the contact address for the Royal Air Force Regiment Depot is:

Acquaintance Course/RRRSF

Royal Air Force Honington

Bury St Edmunds


IP31 1EE

10. Should you be unable to attend the Potential Gunner Acquaintance Course, you should cancel your attendance through the Careers Office in which the nomination was made. You should also cancel your pgac if you have received an injury or have been unwell just prior to your course start date. The PGAC is physically and mentally demanding, you need to give yourself the best chance of success.


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