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Bristol University Air Squadron wins national charity award

Students from Bristol University Air Squadron (BUAS) have won the Royal Air Force Air Cadets/University Air Squadron of the Year title of the RAF Benevolent Fund’s annual awards. 

The ceremony, held virtually on 13 October, was attended by hundreds of RAF personnel and supporters of the Fund in a night which celebrates the achievements of those who support the RAF’s leading welfare charity, from dedicated individuals and groups to RAF stations and corporate partners.

BUAS Bristol University Air Squadron ahead of their 100km bike ride, from left George Bullock, Matt Carr, Ben Bellchambers, Daniel Colbran, Arsh Dang and Will Gray.

The win comes after years of supporting the RAF Benevolent Fund from fundraising to volunteering – the students have done it all! They have cycled 100km to raise funds, organised quizzes and bake sales, volunteered for bucket collections, performed as a cheer squad for runners taking part in the Bristol Half Marathon – as well as some members running the race – and helped the charity to spread the word about the life-changing support it can offer.

Sqn Ldr Si Brewis, Officer Commanding BUAS, said: “Thank you to my staff and especially thank you to the students. This award is in recognition of their significant efforts and their time that they have put into supporting the RAF Benevolent Fund, both raising funds and indeed raising awareness in the Fund’s 100th year.

“They’ve always wanted to support the Fund in whatever endeavours they possibly can. But we are not unique in that, the same endeavour has been achieved by our fellow nominees, Oxford and Yorkshire.”

The award was presented by Dave Appleby, Director Marketing and Sales at Electronics UK Leonardo, who sponsored it.

Air Vice-Marshal Chris Elliot, Controller of the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: “During my first few months at the Fund I was struck by the dedication of our supporters who go to incredible lengths to ensure we are able to continue our work supporting the RAF Family. The awards are our opportunity to celebrate those who make all of this possible and thank all our supporters.

“Huge congratulations to all of the winners, especially BUAS for all they do. We truly would not be able to do what we do without every single one of our supporters whether it be raising money or awareness, helping us to reach even more members of the RAF Family.”

Now in its eighth year, the RAF Benevolent Fund Awards recognise the outstanding contributions of its supporters, personnel on stations and corporate partners who support the charity each year.

The RAF Benevolent Fund has been supporting the RAF for more than 100 years, providing help through the toughest times. If you know an RAF veteran in need, go to to find out how the Fund could help.

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