Training Ship Hastings (TS Hastings) celebrated their oldest cadet’s birthday last week when he turned 90 years of age. Bernard Mallion was a cadet in 1939 the year the unit was first formed in Hastings.
On the evening Mr Mallion toured the classes, where the cadets were practicing Drill, Seamanship, leadership skills and map reading. Following this he had a birthday tea with the cadets and then fielded questions from them on how the unit has changed over the years.
When he first started parading the unit was based at the Bathing Pool and he was on one of 30 but within a few months there were over 130 cadets. Not having enough instructors some of the cadets including Mr Mallion were turned away. Devastated he mulled it over for a while and realised that the instructors hadn’t taken any names, so chancing his luck he returned the following evening only to allowed back in. He remained a cadet for a few years before joining the Royal Navy and serving on board HMS Ramillies.
Mr Mallion has kept his ties with the unit and been a loyal supporter even to this day as he still carries out regular maintenance at the unit every week, even on the day of his 90th Birthday. MR Mallion a retired firefighter was even climbing the 30ft mast only a few years ago, however we have now banned him from this practice.
Our youngest cadet Junior Sea Cadet Maisie Bridges said “I had an amazing evening and it was interesting to find out about what the unit was like when it first started. We still do activities that they learnt about then plus a whole lot more.”
Whether on land or at sea the Sea Cadets offer an environment where young people can find new confidence and inspiration. Across the UK 14,000 young people are challenging themselves and learning new skills through nautical adventure. Help us to keep inspiring the next generation and giving them the best possible head start in life. Hastings Sea Cadets is open two nights a week, for further information please email email@example.com or visit www.sea-cadets.org/hastings