Monthly Archives: October 2018

Here’s what the Reserves get up to! #Re

Here’s what the Reserves get up to!

#Reserves #ArmyReserves #RMR #RNR #RAF

Trip of a lifetime for Chichester Air Cadets


Recently, two Air Cadets from Chichester travelled 6000 miles to South America for a once in a lifetime trip to Peru.

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Cadet Sergeant Elyot Harmston and Cadet Corporal Jonty Parkin were part of a selected group of 24 Air Cadets from all over Sussex. During their three-week expedition they helped to construct a new building at an Orphanage called Azul Wazi – translated as ‘The Blue House’. Their reward for such hard work was a 75km expedition at heights of over 4,500 meters over five days along the Salkantay trail to reach Machu Picchu.

The unique part of this trip was that the Cadets ran the entire expedition, with Staff supporting them in the decision making if needed. Elyot and Jonty had been selected for this expedition, and to earn a place had to go through a grueling selection. Once selected they took part in military leadership training and training from the Edale Mountain Rescue Team in the Peak District.

Many of the cadets raised their own funds to make the trip and one even arranged crowd funding for new clothing and musical instruments to be purchased for the 19 orphans who live at Azul Wasi.

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Reflecting on the trip Cadet Sergeant Elyot Harmston, said:

“Working at the orphanage had a big impact. I have done construction work like that before and it was interesting to see the different building methods. However, seeing what a huge impact our work would make to the orphans and orphanage was really eye opening for me.”

One of the Staff on Jonty and Elyot’s trip was one of the Officers from their Squadron. Flying Officer Richard Foster, said:

“To have enabled a group of keen and enthusiastic young people was a privilege. To see how they overcame various obstacles and challenges, and to help them to overcome them was really rewarding and it was a privilege to be a part of their journey. I was lucky to have taken part in a similar trip at their age, and it changed and shaped my life for the better – it hope it does the same for them.”

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Could you be the next Elyot or Jonty and take a trip like this? Overseas expeditions are one of the many things that Air Cadets get to take part in including the Duke of Edinburgh’s award, visiting RAF Stations and Adventure Training.

It’s never too late to join, Chichester Air Cadets is recruiting, if you are interested in joining and are aged 12-17, you can contact us on for details of our next open evening. We also welcome applications for adult volunteers, who can contact us on the same address.

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Credit – Richard Foster

The Duke of York’s Royal Military School “Exercise Dukie Warrior 2018”

This year as a Contingent, we planned and executed our own summer camp at Salisbury Plain Training Area (SPTA) Wiltshire. We took 90 Cadets and 11 staff of enthusiastic adult volunteers drawn, in the main, from teachers within the School.
We deployed the day after Grand Day to SPTA, a training area used by British Armed forces and forces from around the world. The training area has many challenging training facilities with Battle Camp accommodation.

Challenge, adaptability and tenacity – there was time for self-reflection for the Dukie Cadets this year on Exercise Dukie Warrior ‘18. At SPTA we conducted build up training which felt seamless due to the year’s hard work and training preparation by the cadets and staff at the Schools unique training area and range.
Enthusiastic to hone their military skills further, the training programme for the cadets was full of new demanding and enjoyable challenges, culminating in a final confirmatory exercise set in an urban environment at Imber Village SPTA. We also had assistance from the 1st Battalion the Princesses Royal Regiment who brought with them two Warrior Armoured infantry fighting vehicles and a selection of Infantry platoon weapons. They instructed the Cadets in the role and effectiveness of a Warrior and platoon weapons.

The training began with vehicle check point drills, section attacks, weapon handling, team building, battlefield first aid, Bulford Ranges and a competition day.

The younger cadets were commanded by the Cadet JNCO and SNCO’S who the potential junior under officers were for 2018/19. They acted in an enthusiastic, strong-minded, confident professional manner with drive and determination, when put under pressure from their command appointments.
“Young Dukie leaders emerge from the shadows of Imber village”

The Potential Officers were given appointments to prove their leadership skills during the final exercise phase at Imber Village. This allowed the RSM and staff to select competent and confident Potential Officers to take up the role of under officer in September. This consisted of leading sections in a physically, mentally and demanding urban tactical environment.

The final attack consisted of 2 platoons attacking and securing Imber. It was then that the ambush was set for the enemy who were re-grouping to attack and take back Imber from the Dukie’s.  Imber was saved and the enemy forced to retreat.
The Dukie cadets worked hard all week during the build-up, training and the final exercise phase. For their hard work and efforts they were rewarded with some RNR with a fun day at Thorpe Park.

All the cadets and staff enjoyed their summer camp and looked forward to a well-earned and deserved summer break.
Credit to – CSgt Russell

678 Squadron Army Air Corps support the Medical Detection Dog team

The Milton Keynes Regional Support Team of the Medical Detection Dogs (MDD) have been to visit the 678 Squadron AAC. To enable the dogs to train, the charity needs human sample swabs to help with their scent work.  678 Squadron have volunteered themselves to help out and were given the opportunity to meet and greet the dogs with their handlers.


Guest speaker Tom Borland is one of the MDD volunteers and became involved after he saw an advert which peaked his interest and led him to go along to one of their open days.  He was hooked on day one and it inspired him to work for the charity after seeing first hand the life saying work the charity does.

678 Squadron AAC volunteered not only to help with proving samples but on the day also announced that would help to raise money for the charity and that they had named them as their sponsored charity of the year. 


Major General Bill O’Leary was in attendance, alongside Lieutenant Colonel Marcus Brown 6AAC CO.  In addition to being the Deputy Commander Field Army, the Major General is also the Deputy Lieutenant of the County, which enables him to visit some extraordinary charities in the County.  One those that he visited was the Medical Detection Dogs, he said: “It struck me that they were struggling to get samples that are vital to the training of their dogs.  It was obvious to me that a cohort of Army Reserves from Milton Keynes were an obvious solution to the problem, linking the charity to the unit.  Today has been an wonderful example of that being taken forward and I am so pleased to be able to be here to see that happening today.”


Sandhurst Leadership Challenge

Employees from companies that receive Silver and Gold status, have had the opportunity to attend the Sandhurst Leadership Challenge. The event is held at the nation’s prestigious Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) in Surrey, where officers in the British Army are trained, to take on the responsibilities of leading the soldiers under their command.


The Employer Recognition Scheme encourages employers to support defence and inspire other organisations to do the same.


The scheme encompasses bronze, silver and gold awards for employer organisations that pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to defence and the armed forces community, and align their values with the armed forces covenant.

The leadership challenge is organised and run by the Army’s 11 Infantry Brigade (South East) and the South East Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (SERFCA). The executives and employees who take part, are from a wide range of public sector organisations such as the emergency services, local authorities, NHS trusts and executive agencies are also eligible to be recognised.


Lieutenant Colonel Graeme Macpherson who is responsible for employer engagement at 11 Brigade said: “Todays been a fantastic day, all the candidates have really enjoyed themselves, there’s a real buzz amongst them now. They’ve not only had a great day but also have learnt a huge amount and we hope that they take away this not only an understanding of leadership as it is delivered in the army but also and understanding and awareness of the reserve forces and how that can be compatible with their civilian employment.”