HRH the Princess Royal visited Honiton on Friday 15 July in order to officially open the town’s recently built Joint Cadet Centre. Princess Anne was welcomed to the Joint Cadet Centre by the Lord Lieutenant of Devon, Mr David Fursdon.
The Joint Cadet Centre is shared by the town’s Army and Air Cadet units who parade at the building on separate nights. The purpose built Cadet Centre includes an indoor rifle range, classrooms, stores and office facilities with a shared parade area. The new classroom facilities provide an ideal venue for training although both the Army and Air Cadets spend much of their time outside taking part in Fieldcraft, Adventure Training, Flying, Gliding and Sports.
Princess Anne was given a tour of the facility and met many of the town’s young Army and Air Cadets together with their Volunteer Staff. Demonstrations of various Cadet training activities were provided including First Aid, Fieldcraft, Target Shooting and a Flight Simulator. Citizenship training is also a significant part of both the Army and Air Cadets training syllabus.
Princess Anne spoke with many Cadets and asked questions about their Cadet Force training & experience and was particularly interested in their future career aspirations.
Media Communications Officer, Squadron Leader Dave Rolfe said, “The MOD is investing in the future of youth via the Cadet Forces. The Joint Cadet Centre at Honiton is a good example of this policy, allowing both the town’s Cadet units to expand. Our Royal visit has been enjoyed by all the Cadets, their parents and the Volunteer Staff alike, a very memorable day”.
Army Cadet Staff Sergeant Zoe Herridge and Air Cadet Sergeant Louis Dixon thanked the Princess Royal for her support and the visit concluded with the unveiling of a commemorative plaque.
Several Cadets from Exmouth 299 Squadron Air Training Corps were busy competing in the Wing Activities competition at Okehampton Camp last weekend, with fellow Cadets from across the Devon and Somerset Wing.
In the First Aid competition they won the team event with Corporal Bagnall achieving the highest individual score. The under 18 First Aid team comprised Corporal Matt Bagnall, Cdt Jodie Pointer, Cdt Josh Parker and Cdt Lewis Eaglesfield. This is the tenth year in a row that the Sqn have won the First Aid competition.
Cadet Warrant Officer Dan Bagnall and Cdt Safeen Kay also won the over 18 Young Adult First Aid award. The teams are now off to compete in the Regional Championships later in the year.
The Sqn look forward to representing the Wing again at the Regional Activities Day and hope to go on to represent at the National Competition in October.
Cdt Kay took first place in the over 16 aircraft recognition competition and first place in the Aviation and Non – Aviation photography competitions winning the Aviation Artistry award.
Congratulations to all teams that competed during the Wing Activities Weekend.
I joined 13 (City of Exeter) Sqn ATC in 2002 when I was 13 years old. I joined with other like-minded teenagers who wanted to fly or even just make friends outside of school.
PICTURE: Me (left) and my older sister Sophie (right) immediately after my graduation parade 28 Jun 2016.
I moved to Australia in 2005 when I was 15 but continued to pursue my interest in flying by taking lessons in my school holidays. When I applied to the Royal Australian Air Force I was just under the maximum height restriction but I failed the aptitude test. I went back a year later and I had grown ¾ of an inch so it seemed that I was destined not to be a pilot after all. I returned to the recruitment process several years later with an open mind and ended up enlisting as a Telecommunications Systems Technician in the Australian Army in 2011. 3 years later I decided to transfer to become and Officer. I wanted more of a challenge, and I certainly got it!
I was accepted into the Royal Military College-Duntroon (RMC-D) in Canberra, Australia. It is the premier leadership training centre for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and its curriculum is derived from West Point, the Royal Military College-Canada and, of course, Sandhurst. The 18 month course is designed to take both civilians and existing serving soldiers and teach them everything that they will need to know to become junior Officers. Subjects range from military history, strategic studies and tactics to physical/ mental toughness training and ceremonial and protocol lessons. We worked 6 day weeks and often 16+ hour days. We started with 130 members in our class and graduated with 96 and our course had a reasonably low attrition rate compared to some.
So what you’re probably thinking at this stage is ‘how does this apply to me?’. Well its simple, I spent nearly 3 years in the ATC. I made friends that I still keep, I learnt skills that I still use but, most importantly, I made memories that I will never forget. So as I begin the next phase of my career as a Lieutenant in the Royal Australian Armoured Corps I can’t help but ask, where will your time in the ATC lead you?