Joel’s joy at RAF honour

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A FORMER Chesterfield College student who has forged a successful RAF career has received a top honour for his role in a training and heritage programme.

Senior Aircraftsman Joel Diggle, 34, from Clay Cross, received the Chief of the Air Staff’s Commendation for his significant contribution to the Training and Development Flight Air Power Awareness Programme at Royal Air Force Odiham, in Hampshire.

His father John said: “We’re very proud. This is also a credit to Chesterfield College and Joel’s former air cadets’ group because only those who have done something beyond the call of duty are selected for this honour.”

Joel studied at Tupton Hall School before completing Chesterfield College’s BTech National Diploma in Public Services and he was a member of the 2326 Clay Cross Squadron of the Air Training Cadets.

He has completed tours in Bosnia, Canada, Cyprus, the Falkland Islands, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland and received his commendation certificate on Friday, September 30, at RAF Northolt, London, as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

His father explained how Joel has also been recognised for arranging memorials for deceased Battle of Britain heroes and for organising plaques to mark former RAF bases.

RAF Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton, chief of the air staff, told Joel: “This is a thoroughly well-deserved recognition.

“Your initiative, commitment and leadership have been truly inspirational and you have set a very fine example.”