About the Cadet Summer Training Centre

The Eastern Region Gliding School (ERGS) (in French, l’École de Vol à Voile de la Région de l’Est, formerly l’École des Planeurs) has been in existence since 1975. The school was once located in La Macaza, south of Mont-Laurier, in the Laurentians. In 1976, it moved to the Saguenay region, where it continued to train air cadets who had obtained a gliding scholarship. Theory courses were then given at Cégep de Jonquière, and flight training was given at Saint-Honoré Airport. In 1977, the school moved to an educational institution in Grand-Portage, and flight training was given at Rivière-du-Loup Airport. Finally, in 1978, ERGS moved to the Lafontaine school in Chicoutimi, and flight training resumed at Saint Honoré Airport.

In 1996, after several years at the same location, ERGS moved again. It was at Saint-Jean Garrison, CFB Montreal, that cadets would gain new knowledge of aviation through pilot scholarships and the Introduction to Aviation course.

In 1997, a physics and space education wing (PSEW) was added to the Aviation Wing. PSEW currently accommodates cadets from all three environments. It offers the Introduction to Aerospace, Fitness and Recreation course, and the Fitness Instructor course.

In 1998, the training centre accommodated nearly 580 cadets and a summer staff of nearly 200 officers, non-commissioned officers, civilian instructors and staff cadets. A fleet of 5 Cessna 305 (L-19) Bird Dog tugs and 11 Schweizer 2-33 glider tugs round out the picture. Two more gliders joined the fleet in 2003, and another tug was added in 2005.

For two years, ERGS and the St-Jean Cadet Summer Training Centre shared the various cadet courses between them. Then, in 2002, ERGS once again took over all cadet summer training in the region.

ERGS activities are shared between the CEGEP and the permanent facilities of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Airport (Hangar 3). Administrative offices and theory classrooms are located at the CEGEP, which also houses our cadets and staff. Flight operations are conducted from Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Airport (Hangar 3).

ERGS is also responsible for cadets with power pilot scholarships. In recent years, this training has been given at three schools located in St-Honoré (Saguenay), Trois Rivières and St-Frédéric (Beauce).

The main duty of Cadet Air Operations is to offer gliding familiarization flights for all cadets in the Eastern Region’s squadrons. This activity is conducted from seven gliding sites in Quebec and in Ontario’s Ottawa Valley: Smiths Falls, Lachute, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Trois-Rivières, Bromont, Valcartier and Bagotville. During the summer, Cadet Air Operations become the Eastern Region Gliding School. This shift is due to the nature of the activities, which change at that time of year. To be able to offer the necessary training, the glider fleet is mustered at St-Jean-sur-Richelieu Airport.

In the summer of 2008, after being inactive for several years (since 1996), the Billy Bishop Flight started up again. The region can now train all of the English speaking cadets at a satellite site at Bromont Airport. Since the summer of 2011, the following courses have been offered: Advanced aerospace course (AASC), 6 weeks Gliding scholarship (GS), 6 weeks Pilot scholarship (PS), 7 weeks

ERGS also provides familiarization flights at the Bagotville Air Cadet Summer Training Centre for cadets in the general training course.