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Training For Freedom
Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum
Brandon , Manitoba


   This Community Memories
exhibit focuses on the
personal histories of the men
and women who participated in
the British Commonwealth Air
Training Plan (BCATP) during
World War II in Manitoba.

   The Commonwealth Air
Training Plan came to life in

1939 to school air and ground
crew personnel at bases that
were built in Brandon,
Virden, Neepawa, Rivers,
Carberry and Dauphin. It was
a life-altering event for
these communities in
southwestern Manitoba, for
the recruits and for future

   By bringing men and women
from all over the
Commonwealth to these
training facilities, the
BCATP opened up these
Manitoba communities to the
rest of the world. They
learned about other regions,
other provinces, other
countries. Many women from

the local community married
men from other provinces or
other Commonwealth countries.
   Flight and air travel
before the BCATP was uncommon
and now the skies were filled
with aircraft. The remarkable
infrastructure put into place
for training in these small
communities had an immediate

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