John Adrian Chamier

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John Adrian Chamier
Sir John Chamier.jpg
Chamier in 1931
Nickname(s) "Founding Father of the ATC"
Born (1883-12-26)26 December 1883
Died 3 May 1974(1974-05-03) (aged 90)
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch Royal Air Force
Years of service 1902-29
Rank Air Commodore
Commands held Air Training Corps
Battles/wars World War I
World War II
Awards Knight Bachelor
Companion of the Order of the Bath
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George
Distinguished Service Order
Officer of the Order of the British Empire
Mention in Despatches (2)
Other work Secretary of the Air League of the British Empire
Director of Vickers (Aviation) Ltd.
BBC Correspondent

Air Commodore Sir John Adrian Chamier CB CMG DSO OBE (26 December 1883 – 3 May 1974) was a British officer of the Royal Air Force. Chamier is known as "The Founding Father of the ATC" for his role in the foundation of the Air Training Corps.

Military career[edit]

Indian Army and Royal Air Force[edit]

Chamier was educated at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. After passing out on 27 August 1902, his name was added to the Unattached List of the Indian Army. He was commissioned into the Indian Army as a second lieutenant on 11 January 1904, but with seniority from 27 August 1902, and on 5 February 1904 was attached to the 33rd Punjabis, an Indian Army regiment. He was promoted captain on 27 August 1911. Chamier was commissioned as a flying officer into the Royal Flying Corps on 26 August 1915 and served as a pilot in the First World War.

After the war, he transferred to the newly formed Royal Air Force, in which he served the rest of his career, eventually retiring in 1929.[1] From November 1921 to February 1922, as Deputy Director, Directorate of Operations and Intelligence, Air Ministry, he was a delegate to the Washington Conference on the Limitation of Armaments.[2]

Air Training Corps[edit]

After retirement from the RAF, Chamier became secretary of the Air League of the British Empire.[1] During his tenure as secretary Chamier became involved with the founding, in 1938 of the Air Defence Cadet Corps, which on 5 February 1941 evolved into the Air Training Corps because the ADCC was seen as too forceful and decided to change it to a more subtle name of ATC.[1] He set up the ATC to promote recruitment in the RAF and to get young people who are interested in aviation to be able to go to their local squadron at their own free will, making it more enjoyable.

After it was founded, Chamier became the Air Training Corps' first Commandant, until his retirement in 1944. He was succeeded by Air Marshal Sir Leslie Gossage.

Civilian career[edit]

Between 1928 and 1931 Chamier was a director on the board of Vickers (Aviation) Limited.

Chamier was, at one time, the aviation correspondent for the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).


Chamier had a Mignet HM.14 Flying Flea light aircraft registered G-ADME in his name between 1935 and 1938.[3]


Chamier received several decorations for his service to the British Empire. He was made a Companion of the Order of the Bath, the Order of St. Michael and St. George and the Distinguished Service Order, and an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. In 1944 he was knighted as a Knight Bachelor.

Published works[edit]

  • The Birth of the Royal Air Force (1943) ISBN B0007IVX9W


  1. ^ a b c Air Cadet Publication 31: General Service Training, 2000. Section 1, p. 31.1.1-1
  2. ^ Register of the Department of State 1922
  3. ^ United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority - G-ADME

External links[edit]