Logistics Chef CURRENTLY RECRUITING

As a chef in the RAF, you will have a varied role, preparing food at five-star themed banquets one day and cooking in the field the next.

Full-time regular Spare time reserve

Learn more about this role

Pay During Initial Training £15,670+ + Benefits

After Successful Completion Of Phase two Training £20,000+ + Benefits

DAY RATE STARTS AT: £37.12 + Benefits

Is this for you?

APPLICANTS MUST:

  • Be aged 16 – 47 (Must attest before 48th birthday)
  • No formal qualifications required
  • For qualified entry please see requirements below
  • Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, holder of dual UK/other nationality or have been a Commonwealth citizen since birth
  • Commit minimum 3 years post Phase Two Training
  • Pass the Airmen Selection Test
  • Pass a Fitness test - Details below

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Helping people
  • Analysis and maths

Apprenticeships available

Intermediate Apprenticeship in Catering & Professional Chefs

Learn more

APPLICANTS MUST:

  • Be aged 18 – 54 (Must attest before 55th birthday – Ex Regulars over the age of 55 may be considered on a case by case basis)
  • No formal qualifications required
  • If a qualified Chef, have a NVQ Level 2 or 3 in Food Preparation and Cooking; and Level 2 or 3 Certificate in Hospitality and Catering Principles (Professional Cookery) or any other appropriate recognised civilian qualification
  • Be a UK, Republic or Ireland or Commonwealth citizen
  • Commit 27 days per year
  • Pass a General Fitness Test

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Helping people

Locations

501 Sqn RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire
502 Sqn Aldergrove Flying Station, Co Antrim
504 Sqn RAF Wittering, Cambridgeshire
505 Sqn RAF St Mawgan, Newquay
603 Sqn Edinburgh (Extremely Ltd Vacancies)
605 Sqn RAF Cosford, Shropshire
606 Sqn RAF Benson, Oxfordshire
607 Sqn RAF Leeming, Northallerton
611 Sqn RAF Woodvale, Merseyside (Extremely Ltd Vacancies)
614 Sqn Cardiff, Glamorgan
4626 Sqn RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire (Extremely Ltd Vacancies)

VIEW ALL ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

WHAT WILL YOU DO?

TYPICAL RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Prepare meals in RAF messes
  • Order, store and account for food
  • Help plan menus for everyday meals and VIP occasions
  • Prepare in-flight meals for cabin crew and passengers

Once fully trained you will have organisational, time management, communication and number skills with the ability to stay calm under pressure. You will be able to work in Military Messes preparing hotel standard fare and fine dining experiences for Military personnel, in a field kitchen supporting exercises and operations worldwide or in an In-flight production kitchen producing meals for fast jet pilots, helicopter crews, large aircraft crews and passengers travelling to all corners of the globe. With experience, you could volunteer to work in our VIP Team and cook for high ranking Officers, Government Ministers and even members of the Royal Family.

If selected, you could compete in culinary competitions and eventually gain an invitation to represent the Royal Air Force on the Combined Services Culinary Arts Team who compete internationally against the best industry Chefs in the world.

Your day-to-day tasks will vary with your role, but they will include: preparing attractive menus to nutritional standards, controlling stock, preparing meat, fish and vegetables for cooking, presenting food creatively, maintaining quality, adhering to hygiene and health and safety regulations whilst instilling a knowledge of allergens, nutrition and diets so you can cater to the diverse Royal Air Force family.

WHY JOIN THE RAF?

Thanks to subsidised food, travel, accommodation and free gym you get more money in your pocket.

Salary
Benefits Salary
Civilian Role
RAF Role
  • Rent from £75p/m
  • Free gym
  • Subsidised food
  • Health care
  • World travel
  • 6 weeks holiday

See All Benefits

WHY JOIN THE RESERVES?

The skills you acquire as a Reserve won’t just prepare you for the RAF, they will enhance your work and civilian life.

You might be called up to assist with our operations worldwide for up to six months, during which you may be able to claim a pay award to cover your and your employer’s costs.

  • Training
  • Free gym
  • Subsidised food
  • Paid pension
  • Paid holiday

See All Benefits

TRAINING AND CAREER

TRAINING YOU’LL RECEIVE

Your career will start with a 10-week Basic Recruit Training Course (BRTC) at RAF Halton in Buckinghamshire. The course is designed to help you adjust to a military environment. As well as fitness and military training, you’ll also learn about the RAF lifestyle.

SPECIALIST TRAINING

If you are joining with little or no catering experience, you will need to complete specialist training at the Food Services Training Wing at Worthy Down. This 16-week course will train you to maintain excellent standards of personal, food and kitchen hygiene whilst using specialist kitchen equipment to produce a variety of dishes. You will also undertake a 10-day Introduction to Deployed Operations with No 3 Mobile Catering Squadron where you will be trained to set up field kitchens under tents, enabling you to provide catering support to deployed operations worldwide as well as supporting exercises both based in the UK and abroad.

If you have the relevant qualifications and experience in professional cookery you will be offered the opportunity to undertake a diagnostic test at Food Services Training Wing at Worthy Down. Applicants would need to pass 60% in written and theory tests to be put forward to the fast-tracking process with scores of 80% plus making them eligible for accelerated promotion thereafter.

Fast Track students will automatically progress to the last 4 weeks of the chef course where they will complete familiarisation training and the 10-day introduction to Deployed Operations with No 3 Mobile catering Squadron.

More details +

ONGOING TRAINING/DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES

As your career progresses, we will continue to train you to the highest standard and equip you with the skills you require to take on new responsibilities.  This means that there are opportunities for management, leadership, health and safety training and other associated qualifications.  These include -

  • Catering Advanced Skills Course
  • Catering Supervisors/Managers Course
  • Advanced Deployed Skills (ADS) Course
  • Food Safety and Nutrition Courses up to Level 4

YOUR FIRST TOUR

For your first tour, you will be working either an Officers’, Sergeants’ or Junior Ranks’ Mess, where you will produce a wide range of high-quality food. During your first tour, you will consolidate your training and gain valuable experience that will prepare you for your first operational tour of duty supporting 3 Mobile Catering Squadron in the field or on a deployed Airfield anywhere in the world. The consolidation period includes your Trade Ability Tests (TATs). Successful completion of TATs demonstrates that an individual has achieved an initial level of competence and is a prerequisite for promotion to the rank of SAC, unless you are on a FastTrack engagement. A first tour is always demanding but also highly rewarding and you will be given the time to develop your skills and become an effective member of the team.

YOUR FUTURE CAREER PROSPECTS/PROGRESSION

Further promotion to the rank of Corporal and beyond is by competitive selection. We want you to grow and experience all the opportunities, challenges and responsibilities that being an RAF Chef has to offer, but it will be up to you manage your career and tell us when you are ready for a new challenge. You can expect to remain in your first post for 2-3 years and following tours will be 3 - 5 years. SACs can be employed on Catering Retail and Leisure Units, 3 Mobile Catering Squadron and on VIP duties. On promotion to Corporal you can add Instructional duties and embedded Chef on RAF Regiment Sqns to possible employment areas.

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS

Qualified Chefs and Catering skills are sought after by civilian organisations. Therefore, on leaving the RAF you are extremely employable and well placed to find a new job such as:

  • Head Chef
  • Baker
  • Butcher
  • Catering Manager
  • Consumer Scientist
  • Food Factory Manager
  • Food Manufacturing Inspector
  • Food Scientist
  • Publican
  • Hotel Manager

QUALIFICATIONS YOU CAN ACHIEVE UNDER THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAMME

All Chef entrants are offered the opportunity to enrol on to the Production Chef Intermediate Apprenticeship. The Apprenticeship is completed during your first tour of duty following an independent End Point Assessment

The Chef training programme includes the following elements:

  • Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering
  • Level 2 Award in Health and Safety in the Workplace
  • Level 2 Award in Nutrition

TRAINING YOU’LL RECEIVE

INITIAL TRAINING

Your training will start with a Basic Recruit Training Course consisting of 4 weekends at your chosen RAF Reserves Squadron, followed by a 15-day residential training course at RAF Halton in Buckinghamshire.

SPECIALIST TRAINING

Unqualified Chef: If you are joining with little or no catering experience, you will complete specialist training at the Catering Training Squadron at Worthy Down. This course will give you an overview of catering in the RAF and the basic craft skills required of a chef. You will also undertake the Deployed Skills Course at 3 MC Squadron based at RAF Wittering. The professional training phase will be delivered over 2 training years. After successful completion of year 1 and your Trade Ability Tests you will be promoted to Leading Aircraftsman where you will be classed as interoperable and will be able to deploy on UK based exercises. After successful completion of year 2, you will be promoted to Senior Aircraftsman.

Qualified Chef: You may be eligible for fast-track promotion if you already have acceptable academic catering qualifications and suitable catering experience in the hospitality industry or previous military catering experience. Before you join your qualifications will be considered, and if you have the relevant qualifications and experience you will complete a 2-day diagnostic test. If you achieve a pass rate of 80% or higher on all practical and theory tests you will qualify for promotion to Senior Aircraftsman. Following this you will complete the Deployed Skills Course.

More details +

ONGOING TRAINING/DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES

As your career progresses, we will continue to train you in new skills, including management and leadership. In addition, you will have the opportunity to complete further courses in higher culinary skills, food hygiene, and instructor duties. You will also receive regular training in deployed catering and food ordering, accounting and storage.

CAREER PROSPECTS/PROGRESSION

You initially join the RAF Reserves for a period of 12 years. Following time and experience in the rank of Senior Aircraftsman you will be eligible for further professional training and, subject to recommendations from your Flight Commander, consideration for promotion to the rank of Corporal and beyond; this is by competitive selection and subject to you obtaining positive annual appraisals.

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS

The skills you will learn are transferable to any catering establishment and are as valuable in the civilian world as they are in the RAF – which means that whenever you decide to leave the Reserves, you will be well placed to find a job in the catering and hospitality industry. Qualifications You Can Achieve Under The Apprenticeship Programme

Commitment and location

You will have to commit to 27 days per year for 12 years minimum.
Each year includes a 15-day block for general RAF training, and 12 separate days for extra training or exercises.
You might be deployed to a UK or overseas base for up to 6 months after the first year.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

ALL APPLICANTS MUST:

Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, holder of dual UK/other nationality or have been a Commonwealth citizen since birth. Employment restrictions may be imposed within the Logistics Branch and Trades in relation to the rapid and effective deployability of RAF personnel to countries that apply travel restrictions to non-UK personnel. Non-British personnel applying for these fields of employment are required to certify that they have been advised of the nationality-imposed employment limitations and the consequences of not naturalizing as a British citizen.

Be aged 16–47 (Must attest before 48th birthday).

ALL APPLICANTS MUST:

Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, holder of dual UK/other nationality or have been a Commonwealth citizen since birth.

Be between 18 and 54 years old.

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

If joining the RAF as an unqualified Chef, there are no educational requirements.

If joining the RAF as a qualified Chef, you will need the following:

At least 12 months of suitable experience working as a chef/cook in a hotel, restaurant, hospital or industrial canteen, or other catering establishment (not fast food).

You will also need one of the following:

  • NVQ Level 2 or 3 in Food Preparation and Cooking.
  • Apprenticeship in Commis Chef or Production Chef Standards.
  • Any other appropriate recognised civilian qualification.

NATIONALITY & RESIDENCY

Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, holder of dual UK/other nationality or have been a Commonwealth citizen since birth. Employment restrictions may be imposed within the Logistics Branch and Trades in relation to the rapid and effective deployability of RAF personnel to countries that apply travel restrictions to non-UK personnel. Non-British personnel applying for these fields of employment are required to certify that they have been advised of the nationality-imposed employment limitations and the consequences of not naturalizing as a British citizen.

Whether or not you were born in the United Kingdom, you should have resided there for the 5 years immediately preceding your application. However, candidates with a minimum of 3 years will be considered.

Following the MOD announcement that the UK Armed Forces will now be able to recruit commonwealth citizens without the 5 year residency requirement, please note that the RAF continues to apply standard residency requirements for security clearance,  ie, DV employment requires 7-years UK residency immediately prior to enlistment; SC requires 3-years.

Applications from personnel who do not meet the required 3 year UK residency requirement are now closed until further notice, please continue to check the website for further updates.  If you have previous service and are applying to rejoin the Royal Air Force, or meet the UK residency requirements for service, please call 0345 605 5555 and ask to speak to a RAF Recruitment Specialist.

FITNESS REQUIREMENTS

You must be physically fit to complete both initial and specialist training, and to do your role effectively. To check your fitness levels, we put every candidate through at least two separate fitness tests as part of the application process.

The first of these is the Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT) which takes place at a fitness centre local to you. This consists of the following:

  • 2.4km (1.5m) run on a treadmill (set to zero incline)
  • Achieve the required number of press-ups - within 60 seconds
  • Achieve the required number of sit-ups - within 60 seconds

The second fitness test will take place at RAF Halton as part of your three-day Pre-Recruit Training Course (PRTC). This consists of the following:

  • Achieving the required score on the Multi-Stage Fitness Test (MSFT or Bleep test)
  • Achieve the required number of press-ups - within 60 seconds
  • Achieve the required number of sit-ups - within 60 seconds

How fit you need to be to pass these tests can vary depending on role, age and gender. The requirements are listed on the charts below (Male and Female).

MALES - 100% pass rates:
AGE2.4 Km RunMulti-Stage Fitness TestPress-upsSit-ups
(Mins)(Score)(No.)(No.)
15-1611.399.032035
17-2911.119.102035
30-3411.369.041932
35-39128.091829
40-4412.268.031726
45-4712.547.071623

FEMALES - 100% pass rates:
AGE2.4 Km RunMulti-Stage Fitness TestPress-upsSit-ups
(Mins)(Score)(No.)(No.)
15-1613.546.071032
17-2913.237.021032
30-3413.476.08929
35-3914.136.04826
40-4414.485.08723
45-4715.195.04620

You can see the protocols for Press Ups & Sit Ups here:

PJFT/PRTC Protocols

You can download an MP3 file of the Multi-Stage Fitness Test below, listen to the introduction file first:

RAF MSFT: Intro

RAF MSFT: Bleep Test

You can see a video demonstration of the PRTC Fitness Test here:

RAF PRTC Fitness Test

A 12-week fitness plan with detailed information to help you get ready for all of the fitness tests can be downloaded here.

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

BEFORE YOUR APPLICATION:

There are health requirements that must be met by all applicants:

  • Body Mass Index requirements:
AgeMale and female minimumMale and female maximumMale maximum with additional assessmentFemale maximum with additional assessment
18 +18283230
16 to < 1817272727
  • Eyesight requirements vary for different roles. A requirement to wear glasses or contact lenses may be allowed for aircrew.

Get in touch if you have any questions about the health criteria, or would like to find out if any additional health requirements apply to your role of interest.

DURING YOUR APPLICATION:

The Medical Risk Assessment that all candidates undergo is there to make sure that you are healthy enough for the intense training required by the RAF. Your application will be rejected if you fail to meet the minimum acceptable medical standard for entry. Your medical history is confidential and is not disclosed to those not authorised to hold this information.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

YOU MUST:

  • Declare any previous spent and unspent convictions
  • Check if you qualify under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 through this summary
  • Have a basic background check to get Security Check level clearance

DISQUALIFYING FACTORS

YOU CAN'T APPLY FOR THE RAF IF YOU:

  • Have been or are member of a group that stirs up racial hatred and violence
  • Are waiting to appear in court, or have unspent convictions. You may also have to declare spent convictions for certain roles
  • Misuse drugs, solvents and anabolic steroids. But each case is considered upon its own merits
  • Have tattoos, brands or bead implants that are obscene or offensive. 
    Any permanent or temporary tattoos, whether ordinarily visible or not, must not be obscene or offensive (eg, racist, anti-religion or belief, crude, overtly sexist, homophobic, drug related or of an extreme political nature). Tattoos may be worn on the side and back of the neck but tattoos on the back of the neck must not extend above the natural hairline (scalp tattoos are not permitted). In addition, tattoos must not be visible below the sleeve cuff while wearing uniform, although a single finger (not thumb) tattoo that could be covered by a ring may be permitted
  • Have body piercing which causes holes that do not close up
  • Declare yourself to be an 'undischarged' bankrupt

Beard Policy: A revised facial hair policy has been agreed by the Air Force Board which will allow serving personnel to wear a smart, neatly-trimmed, full-set beard whilst maintaining high standards of appearance. The length of acceptable beards is between Grade 1 (2.5mm) and Grade 8 (25.5mm). The wearing of beards during Phase 1 and Phase 2 training is currently under consideration and details will be advised when available

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

If joining the RAF as an unqualified Chef, there are no educational requirements.

If joining the RAF as a qualified Chef, you will need a NVQ Level 2 or 3 in Food Preparation and Cooking; and Level 2 or 3 Certificate in Hospitality and Catering Principles (Professional Cookery) or any other appropriate recognised civilian qualification.

NATIONALITY & RESIDENCY

Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, holder of dual UK/other nationality or have been a Commonwealth citizen since birth.

Whether or not you were born in the United Kingdom, you should have resided there for the 5 years immediately preceding your application. However, candidates with a minimum of 3 years may be considered.

FITNESS REQUIREMENTS

You must be physically fit to complete both initial and specialist training, and to do your role effectively. To check your fitness levels, we put every candidate through a Pre-joining Fitness Test. 
How fit you need to be to pass this test can vary depending on role, age and gender.

MALES
Age Limits2.4 Km Run (Minutes)Multi-Stage Fitness Test (Level)Press-ups (Number)Sit-ups (Number)
15-1611.399.032035
17-2911.119.102035
30-3411.369.041932
35-3912.008.091829
40-4412.268.031726
45-4912.547.071623
50-5413.277.011520
FEMALES
Age Limits2.4 Km Run(Minutes)Multi-Stage Fitness Test (Level)Press-ups (Number)Sit-ups (Number)
15-1613.546.071032
17-2913.237.021032
30-3413.476.08929
35-3914.136.04826
40-4414.485.08723
45-4915.195.04620
50-5415.534.09517

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

BEFORE YOUR APPLICATION:

There are health requirements that must be met by all applicants:

  • Body Mass Index requirements:
AgeMale and female minimumMale and female maximumMale maximum with additional assessmentFemale maximum with additional assessment
18 +18283230
16 to < 1817272727
  • Eyesight requirements vary for different roles. A requirement to wear glasses or contact lenses may be allowed for aircrew.

Get in touch if you have any questions about the health criteria, or would like to find out if any additional health requirements apply to your role of interest.

DURING YOUR APPLICATION:

The Medical Risk Assessment that all candidates undergo is there to make sure that you are healthy enough for the intense training required by the RAF. Your application will be rejected if you fail to meet the minimum acceptable medical standard for entry. Your medical history is confidential and is not disclosed to those not authorised to hold this information.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

YOU MUST:

  • Declare any previous spent and unspent convictions
  • Check if you qualify under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 through this summary
  • Have a basic background check to get Security Check level clearance

DISQUALIFYING FACTORS

YOU CAN'T APPLY FOR THE RAF IF YOU:

  • Have been or are member of a group that stirs up racial hatred and violence
  • Are waiting to appear in court, or have spent or unspent convictions that may be excluded from certain roles
  • Misuse drugs, solvents and anabolic steroids. But each case is considered upon its own merits
  • Have tattoos, brands or bead implants that are obscene or offensive. 
    Any permanent or temporary tattoos, whether ordinarily visible or not, must not be obscene or offensive (eg, racist, anti-religion or belief, crude, overtly sexist, homophobic, drug related or of an extreme political nature). Tattoos may be worn on the side and back of the neck but tattoos on the back of the neck must not extend above the natural hairline (scalp tattoos are not permitted). In addition, tattoos must not be visible below the sleeve cuff while wearing uniform, although a single finger (not thumb) tattoo that could be covered by a ring may be permitted
  • Have body piercing which causes holes that do not close up
  • Declare yourself to be an 'undischarged' bankrupt

Beard Policy: A revised facial hair policy has been agreed by the Air Force Board which will allow serving personnel to wear a smart, neatly-trimmed, full-set beard whilst maintaining high standards of appearance. The length of acceptable beards is between Grade 1 (2.5mm) and Grade 8 (25.5mm). The wearing of beards during Phase 1 and Phase 2 training is currently under consideration and details will be advised when available

If you don’t have any of the above, you might still be able to apply. For more information contact your local AFCO.

GOT WHAT IT TAKES?

Apply here and receive an email that invites you to your full online application.

Apply as a Regular

GOT WHAT IT TAKES?

Apply here and receive an email that invites you to your full online application.

Apply as a Reserve