Trenchard ' s own opinion of the post-war R A F episode was that he was left with 'heaps of rubble ' and had to 'create something out of nothing ' , a claim that sounds remarkably similar to an earlier one he had made when he was left behind in England in 1914, but a claim that was partially correct.12 Because he agreed to drastic reductions (on paper), Trenchard , in a way, produced some of his own 'rubble'.13 Yet 'Geddes axe' budget reductions clearly did force Trenchard to accept such political realities, although he then was able to turn a poor situation in his favor. He had learned valuable bureaucratic skills, which he used to convey the negative effects on to civil aviation, the Army and the Navy so that the R A F side of the Air Ministry was able to prosper during the next decade.14 Where Trenchard ' s pronouncement fell short, however, was in lack of recognition that he was assisted greatly in his rebuilding effort by the administrative and organizational work Sykes had already done.