Cadets attended a shooting practise at Pirbight Ranges on 20 Feb 05. After a bad start as the range had been doubled booked we were able to get two ranges up and running including a Falling Plate practise.
In spite of the biting wind it didnt snow and a number of Cadets achieved the following Marksman:
On Wednesday 6th April 2005, the Armed Forces Memorial Appeal was launched at a ceremony held in the cinema of the Imperial War Museum, London. The Appeal is to raise money (four million pounds to be exact) to build an Armed Forces Memorial at the National Arboretum, Staffordshire.
The memorial is to commemorate all the members of Armed Forces who have died whilst in service since the end of the Second World War in 1945. It will be unique in that it will include service personnel who have died during exercises or accidents as well as those who have lost their lives on operations.
There were many high profile guests at the launch including Air Chief Marshal Sir Brian Burridge, CinC Strike Command; General Sir Mike Jackson, Chief of the General Staff and a high ranking Naval Officer as well as BBC news reporter John Simpson and Falklands veteran Simon Weston.
Also invited to attend was Plt Off Daniel Davies, Cdt FS Daniel Goldman and Cdt Sgt Michelle Cheah all of 241 (Wanstead and Woodford) Squadron. Two Army Cadets and two Sea Cadets as well as their members of staff joined us. The cadet’s job was to meet guests at the entrance to the museum and escort them to the cinema where the appeal was being launched. The staff were tasked with escorting their respective Service VIP and showing them to their seats.
Once we had completed our task we were free to enjoy the complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits and listen to the appeal launch. Once the launch was over, a reception was held during which the many reporters present took pictures of the models of the memorial and the VIPs. Myself and Cdt FS Goldman tried to strategically place ourselves in the frame but we were politely requested to move!
Overall, it was a very prestigious event and one which I am extremely proud to have been a part of, albeit a small one.
Plt Off D. Davies
As part of the Sqns continuing efforts to gain the Cadets outside recognition for their many achievements five cadets and one ex Cadet have been awarded a 1st Diploma in Public Services BTEC, which is the equivalent of 4 GCSE at A*-C grades. We now have a total of eight cadets who have this prestidgious and valuable award. The certificates were awarded by Sqn Ldr Julian Loxton, London Wing Training Officer.
CWO Holly Brogden Knight – Distinction
FS Michelle Cheah – Merit
FS Charles Barnes – Merit
Sgt Matt Guilford – Merit
Cdt Sam O’Brien – Distinction
Ex Sgt Katy Kennedy – Merit
CWO Nic Hanson has just passed a Wing Board for promotion to Adult Sergeant. This means he will some be joining the Adult Staff of the Sqn and will become offically responsible for training the Cadets on the Sqn. Well done!
The Shooting Team attended a weekend camp at Pirbight on 16 – 17 Apr. Training was carried out on the L81 Target Rifle and live fire practises carried out at Stoney Castle and Pirbright Ranges. many of the Team were new to the L81 and the capabilities of the rifle were an eye opener to them.
Scores where generally good, and have opened the 2005 season in fine style. Congatulations to Ben Filer, who was the best shot at 300 yards (with 32.1) and the best overall shot of the weekend (with 60.1 out of 70), and to Dave Zealander and Kris Pisano who were the joint best shot at 500 yards (with 32.2 out of 35).
Also happy birthday to Brad Davis who celebrated his 14 birthday on the range.
Cadets attended Henly Park Range in Surrey on Sunday 22 May to fire the L98 5.56mm Rifle. Fortunately the rain kept off and a good day was had, with a tremendous ammount of ammunition fired by the Cadets at various targets and distances, inlcuding falling plate, where armoured plates which fall when hit by a bullet, are fired at.
Congratulations to CWO Holly Brogden-Knight who has been appointed as a Lord Lieutenants Cadet for Great London. This honour is for her outstanding service to the ATC over the last seven years.
The Lord Lieutentant is the Queens Offical representative in Counties and Cities, and appears on her behalf at many ceremonies and investitures. Holly will spend the next year assisting him at these events, and will be awarded a special badge to indicate her status.
In addition FS Paul Fothergill has been appointed a Deputy Lord Lieutenants Cadet for the Borough of Redbridge, which has a similar role at Borough Level. He will recieve his award in March at Redbridge Town Hall.
3 more Cadets have completed their Gliding Induction Courses at 614 VGS Weathersfield on Saturday 16 Apr 05, and can now go onto their Gliding Scholarships.
Cdt Ashton – Griffiths
Another update from our ex cadet on Everest.
At 0939hrs GMT on 20th May, myself and five other members of the expedition, together with Sangi Sherpa, succesfully reached the North Col of Everest – 7050m/23,000ft!!!!!!
It was an amazing experience to be climbing on the world’s highest mountain and to be alongside climbers heading for the summit! It was also an incredibly tough day with the weather being the worst on the mountain so far this season (typical!) and the decent was somewhat of an epic – but we all made it back ok!
We were joined on the last section by a Chinese climber who seemed as happy to reach the North Col as we were and called over his comrades to assist with the team photos! From what we’ve heard, the Chinese Expedition later went on to put about 20 climbers on the summit and it would be very interesting to know if he was one of them!!
Sadly, we also learned that one of the Seven Summits Team died whilst decending from the summit – his body was found by the Chinese.
Quite a few of the teams have taken advantage of the brief weather window from 20th-23rd May but most of the big teams, such as Jagged Globe, are waiting until the end of May/beginning of June when much calmer weather is expected. A small number of climbers ventured above the North Col early on but got quite a beating – we saw some very sorry looking people indeed!!
We were also priviledged to be able to spend a great deal of time with the Jagged Globe North Ridge summit team – they are a great bunch and some of the things written by the very silly Times journalist, Stephanie Marsh, may well be inaccurate, so do bear that in mind should you happen to read them. I wish them all the very best of luck in their summit quest – but especially Sibusiso Vilane. He is a wonderful man (an African Game Ranger) and is aiming to be the first black person to climb Everest from both the North and South sides. He previously summited Everest in 2003. I have given Sibusiso several Tibetan prayer flags that I bought in Lhasa – should he again be successful, Sibusiso has agreed to do me the most profound honour and place those prayer flags on the summit for all my friends and family. A quite remarkable act of generosity.
Well, I shall sign off for now. I hope you are all well and I look forward to catching up with you all again soon!!!!
Recruit Course 48 attended Crowborough Training Camp in Sussex over the weekend of the 25 – 27 Feb 05 for their attempt to gain the Sqn’s Black Witch Badge. The Cadets took part in a variety of activities, including Drill, Camp Assault Course, Natural Obstacle Course, Navigation Trg, and a Night Navigation Exercise on the Training Area. The weahter was grim, with both of the early morning runs being in snowy conditions, and several miniblizzards were experienced on Sunday.
However all Cadets passed the Course and were awarded their Black Witch Badge. Special congratulations go to Cdt Pierce who was selected as the Best Cadet of the Course. He will recieve his Trophy from the CO tonight.