Civilian Courses

The two main categories of employment in the Mapping and Charting Establishment (MCE) at Feltham which attended courses at Hermitage were the Map Research Officers (MRO), and Cartographic Draughtsmen. The former were recruited as geography graduates and from 1975, shortly after they joined Military Survey they attended an Induction Course at Hermitage which over a three week period introduced them to the map production process.

Cartographic draughtsmen were initially trained at MCE’s own training department at Feltham although during the 1960s and early 70s it also ran a basic training course in Block D at the SMS. Many ‘cartos’ then attended more advanced cartography courses at Kingston College. From 1980 they also attended an Induction Course at the SMS as did some newly joined reproduction staff. However, cartographic draughtsman also attended 5-week basic air survey courses at the SMS from 1962 until 1987 with MROs having similar training from 1978. This basic air survey knowledge was extended for many ‘cartos’ by attendance on a topographic air photo reading course or an instrument operator course and later other more specialised courses related to Project Petros.

Currently all staff are encouraged to attend specialist Geographic Information Systems and imagery analysis courses. In 1980 junior management courses were instituted to include all employments. These were run until 1987 when they were replaced by technical management courses, which continued into the 1990s. Since when the Geospatial Managers’ course was introduced with the aim to provide DGC middle management training.