Well August can only mean one thing for Kent Army Cadet Force (and many other Counties I am sure), loading up the car with enough stuff to last a month and heading off to Annual Camp!
I thought I had done quite well this year, one huge suitcase (with civvies), two bergans, a flight bag, duvet, bedding, mess dress, ironing board and iron, and then I remembered the office equipment: laptop, printer, files, extension leads, stationery etc and of course the coffee machine! I couldn’t have fitted another pea in my little car but off to Cornwall I went!
I have been County Public Relations Officer for KACF for 5 years now but this was my first camp as head of the team, our photographer Lt Col Barry Duffield had recently retired and so the reigns fell to me and my trusty webmaster turned photographer Sgt Jason Kemp.
We had been discussing for months how things would run at camp, and I had been given the opportunity of having Cadet Corporal Hannah Drinkwater (17, Cranbrook Detachment) help us take photographs (ironically Hannah is the daughter of my old Detachment Commander Captain Steve Drinkwater who taught me as a cadet over.. ahem 15 years ago!).
Having settled in at RAF St Mawgan (after a 6 hour drive) we set up office, and collated the nominal rolls, no photo lists (our holy grail), training programmes and planned our two weeks ahead. Not only did we want local press coverage but we wanted feature ideas for regimental magazines, coverage of visitors day, for our own newsletter and videos to use on our websites!
Hannah and Jason took excellent photos during our time at camp, really great teamwork which has resulted in some excellent local press coverage; the videos are up on our website and the newsletter will be out soon.
Jason wrote two computer applications, one which resized over 700 photos to 300 DPI in seconds, and secondly a nifty piece of kit to draw all of the captions and photos out into the separate newspaper files in a split second too – saving us hours! Great when our county has over 40 separate titles to cover (different paper areas and towns covered!)
We all had a really busy but fabulous camp (somewhat fraught at times), it is great to be able to see first-hand Cadets and Adults working and training hard, this helps us to find out what they really enjoy about the ACF – which in turn helps us to promote the good news stories in the press and other media!
The adults do a tremendous job and without them and my fellow officers KACF wouldn’t be able to offer the young people of Kent the opportunity to Live the Adventure!
Camp certainly isn’t two weeks of the usual rest and relaxation but it sure is fun and only 6 months until the next one! Bring it on!
A great new video abouth the Adult Instructor is now available on the link below……..