Tag Archives: Army Cadet Force

Oxfordshire (The Rifles) Battalion Army Cadet Force Annual Camp 2016 Part.2


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2nd Lieutenant Wayne Thrussell is a former cadet and has been an instructor for 18 years specialising in water sports training. He is also the 2nd In Command of Nivelle Company based in Abingdon.

Wayne, whose day job is a sales trainer said “The kids are sometimes apprehensive about the water based activities and it is great to see their confidence grow once they get on the water and start to build their skills.  As a former a cadet I feel it is important to give something back.”

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Being on Annual Camp gave Cadet Tom Norton the opportunity to try archery.  Tom who is with the Kidlington Detachment said “I would like to join the Army and I think that being a cadet will give me a headstart. I have only been a cadet for 4 months but I am really enjoying it, the range of activities and the chance to do things you don’t do in normal life.”

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Lance Corporal Millie Warwick parades with the Witney Detachment said “I love the environment of camp and especially the shooting and fieldcraft. I think being a cadet is a great opportunity to develop yourself, have fun with friends, we learn to be independent and capable of doing things for yourself.”

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Seeing an advert for the ACF led Lance Corporal Kate Harris to join the Abingdon Detachment almost 2 years ago. She hopes to join the Army as a geographic technician but at the moment she says “Cadets is great fun, I have become more confident and made lots of friends.”

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A member of Shrivenham Detachment, Lance Corporal Mairi Balmer has been a cadet for almost 3 years.  She said “My twin is a member of the Air Training Corps but I couldn’t join due to my fear of heights. I think the ACF offers more than the other cadet forces, activities are so varied.  Our Detachment Commander is so experienced and really keeps us motivated as well as making sure that we have fun. Being a cadet is a genuinely a good thing to do.”

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Cadets from the Corunna Band and Bugles came together at Annual Camp to practise their musical skills, culminating with playing in the Officers Mess during a formal dinner. Lieutenant Kaz Raffael, Director of Music said “The Commandant invited us to come along to Swynerton and to spend a week together on a music camp. We rarely have the opportunity to spend so much time together and the benefits are immeasurable. It is great to see how much progress the cadets have made including learning a number of new pieces.”

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For Lance Corporal George Walkui the ACF has been a great way of developing his musical skills. George plays the trombone, bugle and percussion, and has been a cadet for 3 years. He said “I joined the ACF because of the opportunities to improve my playing. I am a member of the Band and also of Wallingford Detachment. We have some great opportunities to play at events including at a Sandhurst family open day. It is great for us to be able to spend so much time together just playing.”

For more information please visit https://armycadets.com/county/oxfordshire-acf/

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Oxfordshire (The Rifles) Battalion Army Cadet Force Annual Camp 2016 Part.1


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A total of 264 Army Cadets and their instructors from across Oxfordshire came together at Swynerton Training Camp, Staffordshire for 2 weeks of fun, friendship and action at their annual camp (6th-18th August). The action started with 4 days out on the training ground putting into practice skills learnt at local detachments. This included a theoretical scenario based exercise in which a sudden and massive invasion of Western Europe by land and air had been launched.  As a result the senior cadets were deployed to the front line to defend the training area, while the junior cadets were called upon to secure a suspected enemy position, known as “Emergency Government Head Quarters, Bunker 6.”

As part of the exercise the cadets cleared bunkers, slept out in the field under a basha, cooked rations from an army ration pack, and practised their navigation and ambush skills. Lending a feeling of reality to the exercise and creating a fast moving scenario, senior instructors communicated to the cadets on the ground via Skype and news updates on the “invasion” were broadcast.

During the second week of camp the cadets took part in a variety of adventure training activities including raft building, canoeing, paddle boarding, climbing wall, archery, cycling, range firing.

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Corporal Megan Norwood has been a cadet for four years with the Donnington Bridge Detachment.  Although originally she didn’t want to follow in her brother’s footsteps she now says that she loves being a cadet.  She said “I became a cadet because I wanted a new challenge, with the ACF I have achieved my silver Duke of Edinburgh Award and gained adult first aid qualifications. Camp gives us the opportunity to take in activities we don’t normally do and to take part in an exercise.”

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Polly Davey lives in Goring and parades with the Wallingford Detachment.  She said “Being a cadet gives you the chance to try new things and to get skills for life. At camp I have really enjoyed firing rifles on the ranges and the raft building challenge.”

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Lance Corporal James Bennett, Kidlington Detachment was taking part in Annual Camp for the second time. James said “I have been a cadet for 2 years. Camp is a great experience, it is fun and you are always busy with a routine, we have to get up early and keep things clean and tidy.” James is hoping to take a painting and decorating apprenticeship, and at the same time build his fitness levels with the ambition of joining the Parachute Regiment.

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Army Cadet Varisha Hussain who was experiencing Annual Camp for the first time said “Camp has been lots of fun so far and I have made lots of new friends. I have really enjoyed the bike riding today, the scenario training and sleeping out under a basha.

Varisha lives in Cowley and joined the Blackbirds Ley Detachment in October 2015, she said “I wanted to do something different. Cadets gives you lots to do and there is the chance to learn lots of new things.”

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Based with the Shrivenham Detachment, Cadet Beth Leo has been a cadet for almost a year. She was encouraged to join by her brother who got a job because of the skills he had acquired through the ACF. She said “This is my first time at camp and I am having a great time. Cadets is a great way of learning new skills that aren’t taught at school.”

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Sergeant Instructor Melissa Layden combines her Army Cadet instructor role with a busy life working as a healthcare assistant at a mental health unit. A former cadet, Melissa returned to the Blackbird Leys Detachment when she finished at university.

Melissa said “Becoming an instructor was a natural progression, particularly as my father was an instructor. The ACF is a brilliant environment, fun, gives you transferable skills, gets you out in the fresh air and gives your friends for life. I have met my two best friends and my partner through cadets.

For more information please visit https://armycadets.com/county/oxfordshire-acf/ 

Surrey Army Cadets Annual Camp 2016 Part.5


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Cadet Amy Ringshaw, 14, is a pupil at Charters School and has been a cadet with Chobham Detachment ACF for almost two years.  She said “I saw people in uniform at school on Remembrance Day and wondered what it would be like to be part of the ACF and so I went along to find out and here I am … “  She continued “This Annual Camp is really good fun, especially as we don’t have to do PT at 6.30am every morning this time!  I’ve enjoyed the Detachment and Company Days very much where we’ve been to Weymouth and done the cliff jumping and coasteering.”  Amy is having a lot of fun as an Army Cadet, she said “I think I’m more confident in speaking to people and I’ve got a lot more discipline and my values have changed too.  I really enjoy the social element and the fact that as a detachment we get to do so many different things”.

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Cadet Matthw Ringshaw, 15, is a pupil at Silesian College in Farnborough and has been a cadet with Chobham Detachment for a year and ten months.  He said “I thought it would be fun to join the ACF and I love it, it’s been great.  I’ve met loads of new people and done some great activities.  The Company Days have been the best part of this Annual Camp as it’s so good spending time with your friends.”  He added “Since I’ve been with the ACF I’ve grown more confident.  I work better in a team and am able to take charge of more situations.”

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Corporal Marco Toledo, 17, is a cadet with Chobham Detachment ACF.  He said “I joined the ACF five years ago because I wanted to do something positive and pro-active with my time.  I needed more discipline and I was very shy and couldn’t talk to people.  That’s all changed now.  I’ve got a lot more confidence to communicate and every Annual Camp I come along to, I make a new friend.”  Marco who is going to Guildford College in September to study media has enjoyed this year’s annual camp.  He added “It’s very well organised and the fitness regime that we’ve got as senior cadets has been been really hard but very good for me.  I’m been running every day and it’s been good for my personal admin and discipline.”  For Marco, the highlights of his five years with the ACF have included his promotion to Lance Corporal; the responsibility made him want to inspire the younger cadets and he has enjoyed being on parade and representing the ACF which has filled him with immense pride.

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Cadet Ethan Dye, 12, is a cadet with Mytchett Detachment ACF and this has been his first Annual Camp having only joined 8 months ago.  A pupil at Ash Manor School, he wanted something else to do and finds that he has a real passion for shooting.  On Annual Camp he particularly enjoyed shooting the scorpion air rifle.  Ethan was one of a group of cadets who climbed the cliffs at West Weares on the Isle of Portland.  He said “It was very steep and I didn’t dare look down.  At first I wanted to stop but then I just got on with it.  I’m scared of heights so I’m really proud of my achievement.  At least I don’t feel sick any longer!”

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Cadet Owen Gibson, 13, is a pupil at Ash Manor School and has been a cadet with Mytchett Detachment ACF for a year.  He said “My Dad, who is a major with 5RIFLES in the Army, suggested I join the ACF and so here I am.  This is my first Annual Camp and it’s really good fun.  Better than I thought.  It’s hard work but in a fun way.  I didn’t like the caving and tunnelling that much but I did it – I overcame my fear and I’m quite proud of myself for that.”

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Cadet Sergeant Major Sophie Verrinder, 18, is a student at Alton College and has been a member of Mytchett Detachment ACF for almost six years.  Heading off to Portsmouth University in September to study Law with International Relations, this is her final Annual Camp as a Cadet.  She said “I’ve got so much out of being a cadet.  So many friends, so much confidence, life skills and shared experiences that I wouldn’t have got if I’d been on my own rather than with a team of people. I was lucky enough to go on the exchange to Australia last year and also took part in the Njmegen Marches. In the ACF it’s a real community and there’s a lot of peer support.  I’d definitely like to come back as an Adult Instructor.”

https://armycadets.com/county/surrey-acf/

Surrey Army Cadets Annual Camp 2016 Part.4


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Cadet Alice Saker, 15, is a pupil at Winston Churchill School and has been a member of Woking Detachment ACF for just over one year.  She said “I joined with friends but they’ve actually all left and I’ve stayed.  I like to see the way I’ve improved. I’m normally quite girly but it’s fun to do stuff that is more outdoorsy like the shooting.”  She added “The coasteering was very scary but I have a real sense of achievement for having done it and the sea kayaking was fun but we kept capsizing”.

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Cadet Chloe Greaves, 13, is a pupil at Charters School in Sunningdale and has been a member of Chobham Detachment ACF for seven months.  She said “I joined the ACF as I thought it’d be a good and new experience and this is my first Annual Camp.  I have never swum in the sea before because I’m scared of the water but we went coasteering and I actually jumped off the rocks.  I’d definitely do it again and I’m not so scared of swimming in the sea now.”  She added “I’m making lots of new friends and I’m enjoying camp far too much to even call home – it’s really fun!”

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Adult Under Officer Mike Curtis, 23, is the Commander of Woking Detachment Surrey ACF.  A former cadet he has spent the past four years volunteering as an instructor.  Mike is in the middle of a gap year having graduated from Surrey University in November 2015 with a BA Hons in Business Management.  He said “I did so much as a cadet including travelling to Lesotho in South Africa for Cadet 150, two scuba diving trips to Egypt, and trips to Cyprus and France, I really wanted to give something back.”  He added “I get a lot of real satisfaction in seeing the cadets progress and there’s fun and a good social scene amongst the staff and other volunteers.  The support and experiences I have had from the ACF have played such a key part in my life and I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to get my degree without my ACF skills and qualifications.

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Staff Instructor Natasha Chessman, 26 is an Adult Volunteer at Woking Detachment.    A former cadet herself, Natasha joined the ACF as an adult eighteen months ago.  She said “Once my daughter was of an age where I could go back to work, I got a part-time job as a pre-school assistant and then thought I’d like to volunteer as well and so came back to the ACF.  We’ve got a very strong Company doing a lot of fundraising and other very rewarding things and there are lots of opportunities for me to develop my own skills and qualifications.  I would like to do a Skill at Arms Course and also become an Official Assessor on First Aid courses as well as a Mountain Leader’s Course.”

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Cadet Chloe Alma-Daykin, 16, has been an ACF Cadet for just over a year at Chobham Detachment.  Hoping to go to Farnborough College, Chloe joined the ACF because she wanted to test herself and push herself out of her comfort zone, as well as wanting to meet and make new friends.  She said “This is my first Annual Camp and it’s more fun than I expected.  I was really scared doing the coasteering but so proud of myself for doing it and the sea kayaking was really fun.  I learnt that if I put my head in the right zone I can do it”.  For Chloe, Fieldcraft is her favourite activity and she likes the fact that she has a whole new community of friends who aren’t from school”.

https://armycadets.com/county/surrey-acf/

 

Surrey Army Cadets Annual Camp 2016 Part.3


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Lance Corporal Sebastian Edwards, 16, was a pupil at St Bede’s School and is hoping to go to Reigate College in September.  A cadet at Redhill Detachment ACF, Sebastian joined the ACF three years ago with friends as it sounded good and he wanted something fun and challenging to do.  He said “I love the field exercises and the shooting because we don’t often get the opportunity to do it.  The coasteering was fun – I’ve never done it before but I enjoyed it.”

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Lance Corporal Kevin Perera, 16, is a pupil at St Bede’s School where he is about to go into the Sixth Form.  A member of Redhill Detachment, he joined the ACF three years ago with friends and to get the military experience.  He said “This Annual Camp has been great and I’ve enjoyed the adventure training days a lot, as well as the field craft and assault course which was good fun.”  The highlight of Kevin’s ACF Career to date has been his promotion which took place during this year’s Annual Inspection as well as last November taking part in the Orienteering Nationals in Yorkshire where he achieved fifth position.

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Staff Instructor James Armstrong is a volunteer Adult Instructor at Dorking and Reigate Detachment.  He joined the ACF as staff two years ago having been a cadet himself.  He said “I was trying to join the Army and sustained an injury so as I had enjoyed my time as a cadet so very much I wanted to give something back.  I enjoy it and I get a lot out of it; especially watching the cadets get something out of it.  It’s very rewarding seeing them progress and develop.  James is an Emergency Care Support Worker for SECAMB (South East Central Ambulance) and enjoys the fun and social side of volunteering with Surrey ACF.  He added “I’m able to develop my people management skills and via cadets I’m now trained to teach first aid which is a skill and qualification I can take into my civilian workplace”.

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SSI Michael Exley, 43, volunteers as a Cadet Force Instructor at Redhill Detachment ACF.  A wedding and portrait photographer as well as a stay at home Dad for his two year old daughter, Michael joined Surrey ACF three and a half years ago.  He said “I spent 21 years in the Army as a radio operator with the Royal Logistics Corp and when we moved from Manchester to Crawley, I thought it would be a good way of meeting new people and making new friends.  I’m always interested in my local community and I also wanted to utilise my qualifications from my military service.  I find it very rewarding and a lot of fun.  I especially enjoy seeing the marked improvement in the cadets after they’ve been coming along for a while”.  He added “It does take up a lot of time but my wife is very supportive and understanding especially as she is an Army Reservist herself with 150 Recovery Company in Croydon”.   Michael wants to build on his existing skills and is currently doing his Duke of Edinburgh Assessor qualification which will be of great benefit to Surrey ACF.

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Cadet Chloe Link, 15, is an ACF Cadet at Yorktown Detachment having joined in October last year.  A pupil at Frogmore Community College, she joined the ACF because she needed to do something with her spare time.  She said “I wanted to make new friends that I have shared interests with and I want to join the Army.  This is my first Annual Camp and I’ve enjoyed the shooting most of all as well as the adventure training days, especially the tunnelling, low ropes, army tanks, mountain biking and the coasteering.  It’s all been great fun”.

https://armycadets.com/county/surrey-acf/

Surrey Army Cadets Annual Camp 2016 Part.2


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Cadet RSM Shauna Lawless, 18, has been a member of Caterham Detachment ACF for four and a half years.  She said “My arms are killing me – we’ve just done the sea kayaking – it was really good fun.  This camp has been brilliant as there has been so much adventure training and sport.  Sadly it’s my last one as I’ll be leaving soon and hopefully going off to university”.   Shauna, who has been a student at Warlingham Sixth Form, joined the ACF for a different experience.  She said “I wanted to meet new friends and do something different with my time.  I like fitness and so cadets seemed a good idea.  I want to teach sport and so the teaching qualifications you can get really help.  I did the Senior Cadet Instruction Course last year and all the experiences I’ve had at Surrey ACF, including going to Australia on the three week exchange, definitely helped me to stand out on my Personal Statement.  In fact, I’ve been given a reduced grade offer from Bath University on the back of my cadet skills and qualifications. So instead of needing 3A’s I now need ABB.”

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Cadet Rowan Hendrie, 15, has been a member of the Royal Alexandra and Albert School Detachment for three years.  He said, “Coasteering was amazing.  I was quite scared to jump into the water because you don’t know what’s beneath you, but I did it!”  Rowan, who joined Surrey ACF to help develop his teamwork skills, discipline and to conquer some of his fears, said that this summer camp was the best so far and the highlight of his cadet career, with the coasteering, sea kayaking and rock hopping being stand out activities.

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Cadet Scarlett Millar, 13 has been a member of the Royal Alexandra and Albert School Detachment for almost a year having joined for all the activities, especially the athletics and other sports.  She said “This is my first Summer Camp and it’s been brilliant. I did my Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expedition which was a ten and a half hour hike along the coast in Swanage and Corfe Castle, spread over two days.  I love meeting new people, making new friends and learning new things.  The adventure training days like today have been the most fun.  I do canyoning outside of cadets so I loved the coasteering and sea kayaking.”

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Cadet Rose Guy, 14 is a pupil at The Beacon School and has been a cadet with Banstead Detachment for a year and a half.  She said “This is my first Annual Camp and it’s really good.  I’m meeting loads of new people.  The adventure training days are the best and I like the coasteering, climbing and sea kayaking.  I also really enjoyed the shooting.”  Rose is set on a career in the Army and joined the Army Cadets to get an insight into some of the military skills.

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Lance Corporal Zara Branco, 14, is a member of Horley Detachment ACF.  A pupil at Oxted School, she joined Army Cadets two and a half years ago because she had lots of free time and she wanted to meet new people.  She said “I love the fact you can say that you’ve done something that other people haven’t and it’s a different community to school friends”.  Zara added “This Annual Camp, I’m seeing friends from previous annual camps that I don’t get to see as well as meeting new people”.  Zara is enjoying her cadet experience and has gone on a trip to Normandy, and has achieved a BTEC in Leadership and Teamwork.  She said “It’s great to get a qualification for doing something that you love”

https://armycadets.com/county/surrey-acf/

Surrey Army Cadets Annual Camp 2016 Part.1


SURREY ARMY CADETS HAVE THE TIME OF THEIR LIVES ON DORSET’S JURASSIC COAST

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ARMY CADETS from across the whole of the county of Surrey have returned home after spending two weeks on Dorset’s Jurassic Coast  (24th July – 5th August) for their Annual Summer Camp.

For the Cadets, aged between 12 and 18 years old, Summer Camp is an exciting and enjoyable two weeks packed with fun and adventure and sees them take part in a huge variety of outdoor activities.  This year’s camp, with “teamwork” as the overriding theme, enabled the cadets to make the most of their coastal location and saw them coasteering, rock hopping, sea kayaking, orienteering, mountain biking and climbing as part of their adventure training activities.  This was undoubtedly the highlight of the camp for the Cadets, many of whom were away from home for the first time.   The adventure training activities took place at several Dorset locations; Lulworth Cove, Wareham and Weymouth and the Isle of Portland.

In between these outdoor activities, the Cadets practiced their first aid skills, drill, map & compass reading on orienteering courses, their military knowledge, tent building and safe weapon handling. A group of Two Star Cadets also took part in a field training exercise and dismounted close combat training, swimming and obstacle course at Bovington Camp, as well as undertaking their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expedition.  The most senior cadets spent four nights in the field, and had the opportunity to practice long range shooting and navigation.

Throughout the fortnight, the 215 Cadets were looked after by 64 Adult Instructors all of whom are volunteers and manage a broad programme of military and adventurous training activities designed to develop character and leadership.  Surrey ACF were also joined by 18 cadets from Western Australia Army Cadet Force and their five adult volunteers as part of their ongoing exchange programme.