“No education is complete which does not
fit its recipients to take part in the defence
of his country,” so said the headmaster
of Abingdon, William Grundy, at Speech
Day in July 1913 when announcing that
the School would be forming an Officer
Training Corps (OTC). Loud applause and
cries of ‘hear, hear’ greeted his words and
Abingdon’s OTC was gazetted the following
year, on 18 April 1914. The First World War
was still not even a speck on the horizon.
In 1942, OTCs became known as JTCs,
Junior Training Corps, and then in 1948
the CCF, the Combined Cadet Force, was
formed as a Ministry of Defence youth
organisation. For many years Abingdon’s
CCF used to have an army, navy and
RAF section, these days there is no naval
As You Were – Abingdon CCF Over 100 Years
A CCF Annual Inspection on Upper Field in the
1960s. The headmaster, James Cobban, is on
the right with the Inspecting Officer
The OTC on their summer camp
in August 1938 at Tweseldown
near Aldershot in Surrey.
Abingdon’s newly formed OTC in 1914
drawn up outside School House led by
the headmaster, William Grundy.
There is no date on this photograph but the length
of the hair would suggest that it’s probably the
1970s. John Griifin, Contingent Commander of
Abingdon’s CCF from 1966 to 1988, is on the left.
RAF section at RAF Bawdy in 1987.
Chris Biggs, Contingent Commander from 1988
to 1996 is on the left
Abingdon School’s OTC cap badge
Remembrance Day 2009
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