Personnel Support Musician CURRENTLY RECRUITING

As an RAF Musician, you will enjoy a varied life that includes performing, individual practice, rehearsals and travelling.

Full-time regular Spare time reserve

Learn more about this role

Minimum Average Pay Over Your First Year £17,000+ + Benefits

Initial pay after training £25,525 + Benefits

DAY RATE STARTS AT: Depends on role, rank and experience

Is this for you?

APPLICANTS MUST:

  • Be aged 17.5 -47 (Must attest before 48th birthday)
  • Perform to a minimum Grade 8 standard as defined by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music or equivalent; current instrumental vacancies include Oboe, Clarinet, Cornet, Tuba and Percussion
  • Have GCSE at Grade G/1-3 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 6/Scottish National 4 in English language
  • 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
  • Meet the health and fitness criteria
  • Pass a Fitness test - Details below

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Travelling the world
  • Helping people

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)
  • Be a UK, Republic of Ireland or Commonwealth citizen
  • Perform to a minimum Grade 8 standard as defined by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music or equivalent
  • Have GCSE at Grade G/1-3 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 6/Scottish National 4 in English language
  • Meet the health and fitness criteria
  • Commit 27 days per year for 12 years minimum
  • Pass a General Fitness Test

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Travelling the world
  • Helping people

Locations

RAF Aux Band RAFC Cranwell, Lincolnshire

VIEW ALL ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

WHAT WILL YOU DO?

TYPICAL RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Perform at concert halls, graduation ceremonies and military parades
  • Play dance music, chamber repertoire, military marches, symphonic concerts and jazz
  • Provide musical support for events like dinners, dances and visits by Heads of State

RAF Musicians provide musical support for the RAF, ranging from Military and State events to concerts, television and radio broadcasts and studio recordings.

The military engagements include Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, Royal Jubilees, Royal Weddings and Funerals, Remembrance Sunday at the Cenotaph in London and graduation parades for new RAF Recruits at RAF Halton.

On completion of training you will be assigned to a regular band at either RAF Northolt in West London or RAFC Cranwell in Lincolnshire. All our musicians - whether woodwind, brass, percussion or string players – are required to perform a variety of playing styles as well as performing on parade.

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 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

The next step is a period of specialist Workplace Induction Training (WIT) at Headquarters Music Services (HQMS) based at RAF Northolt. If at audition you have performed to a high level, you will spend approximately four weeks studying your primary instrument, learning band drill, completing academic work while also learning about the ethos and core values of RAF Music Services. If at audition you perform to the required standard but areas for development are identified, you will spend up to twelve weeks at HQMS and provided with mentoring to help you develop areas of your performance.

More details +

ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATIONS

Musicians who choose to enrol on the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) scheme will study instrumental performance, harmony, orchestration, history and conducting with well-respected specialists in each field working towards gaining the following diplomas:  

  • DipABRSM in performance
  • LLCM in performance
  • LTCL in performance
  • DipLCM in music direction
  • DipABRSM in music direction
  • LRSM in music direction

ONGOING TRAINING/DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES

As well as the chances to develop your musical skills, there are countless opportunities to develop other skills through the Training and Development Section at your RAF unit. This could include academic study such as courses in management and leadership or adventurous sports training, allowing you to participate in sports like skiing, sailing and mountaineering with the possibility of becoming a qualified instructor in a sport of your choice.

YOUR FIRST TOUR

Following on from WIT will be a posting to one of the three Regular Bands. Central Band and Regiment Band located at RAF Northolt and the Band of the RAF College at RAFC Cranwell. Your posting will depend on where there is a vacancy for your instrument with the initial length of your first tour being a minimum of 18 months however, this may vary due to operational demands.

YOUR FUTURE CAREER PROSPECTS/PROGRESSION

You will begin your career in a Regular Band as an SAC, from there you will be considered for promotion up to the rank of Warrant Officer after gaining the relevant qualifications through the CPD scheme. Personnel deemed suitable and qualified may elect to undertake selection for commission as a Director of Music.

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS

As a musician in the RAF you will have many personal development opportunities and the chance to gain unique experiences whilst working around the world. Upon leaving the Service, many RAF Musicians re-enter the civilian musical world as either performers or teachers. Progression through the ranks will increase your leadership and management skills and you'll have the opportunity to transfer these skills to civilian qualifications.

TRAINING AND CAREER

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. This training course will prepare you for service life in one of the most respected military forces in the world; it is also designed to help you tune into the military environment and way of life. As well as military training, you will learn about the core values, code of conduct and history of the RAF, as well as its unique lifestyle.

 

More details +

ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATION OPPORTUNITIES

Musicians who complete the rank related Performance Exams, have the opportunity to gain the following diplomas in music performance: Dip ABRSM, LLCM and LTCL.

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS

As a Musician in the RAF Reserves, you will have all the personal development opportunities and career prospects of your RAF Regular counterparts, together with the chance to gain unique experiences whilst working around the world.

 

FUTURE CAREER PROSPECTS AND PROGRESSION

You will initially join the RAF Reserves for a period of twelve years. Musicians have the opportunity to be considered for promotion up to the rank of Flight Sergeant, this is by competitive selection and subject to you obtaining positive annual appraisals.

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.

Should a PTVR Musician be mobilised within the UK they may be employed to deliver the full spectrum of functions as performed by RAF Regular Bands.

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.

Be aged 17.5–47 (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 aged 18 – 54 (Must attest before 55th birthday – Ex Regulars over the age of 55 may be considered on a case by case basis)

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

Perform to a minimum Grade 8 standard as defined by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music or equivalent

Have these minimum grades:

  GCSE GCSE 2017 SNE
English Language G Grade 1-3 Grade 4

You can see what the RAF accepts in lieu of GCSEs & A Levels here.

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 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.

Full details for Commonwealth applicants can be found here.

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 Familiarization Visit (PRFV). 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:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Multi-Stage Fitness Test Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (Score) (No.) (No.)
15-16 11.39 9.03 20 35
17-29 11.11 9.10 20 35
30-34 11.36 9.04 19 32
35-39 12 8.09 18 29
40-44 12.26 8.03 17 26
45-47 12.54 7.07 16 23

 

FEMALES - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Multi-Stage Fitness Test Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (Score) (No.) (No.)
15-16 13.54 6.07 10 32
17-29 13.23 7.02 10 32
30-34 13.47 6.08 9 29
35-39 14.13 6.04 8 26
40-44 14.48 5.08 7 23
45-47 15.19 5.04 6 20

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

PJFT/PRFV 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 PRFV 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:
Age Male and female minimum Male and female maximum Male maximum with additional assessment Female maximum with additional assessment
18 + 18 28 32 30
16 to < 18 17 27 27 27
  • 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 a 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

Perform to a minimum Grade 8 standard as defined by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music or equivalent

Have these minimum grades:

  GCSE GCSE 2017 SNE
English Language G Grade 1-3 Grade 4

You can see what the RAF accepts in lieu of GCSEs & A Levels here.

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 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

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

MALES - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (No.) (No.)
15-16 11.39 20 35
17-29 11.11 20 35
30-34 11.36 19 32
35-39 12 18 29
40-44 12.26 17 26
45-47 12.54 16 23

 

FEMALES - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (No.) (No.)
15-16 13.54 10 32
17-29 13.23 10 32
30-34 13.47 9 29
35-39 14.13 8 26
40-44 14.48 7 23
45-47 15.19 6 20

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

PJFT/PRTC Protocols

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:
Age Male and female minimum Male and female maximum Male maximum with additional assessment Female maximum with additional assessment
18 + 18 28 32 30
16 to < 18 17 27 27 27
  • 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 a 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.

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