On 30-31st October, No.3 (Ironside) Company held two non-residential training days at Waterbeach Cadet Training Centre. 61 Cadets attended, supervised by 19 qualified instructors. The weekend was planned by newly appointed 3 Company Training Officer Lt Vicky Houghton. SSI Lee Harris was acting Company Sergeant Major for the weekend, and the Coy's new Officer Commanding, Captain John Kell MBE, was in overall command. The focus of the weekend was on Skill at Arms training on the Scorpion Air Rifle and the L98 A2 Cadet GP rifle, and navigation training, testing cadets map reading skills and improving their understanding of the subject.
Captain Knights gives instruction on the Scorpion Air Rifle. Picture: SSI Cole
The Basic Cadre, which consisted of 30 new recruits, was under the supervision of Staff Sergeant Ben Sanderson. They completed a variety of skill based subjects including first aid, where they learnt how to conduct cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and put people into the recovery position. They had their first introduction to the Scorpion .177 air rifle, learning to use weapon safely, and having a chance to fire it. They also participated in map reading lessons, before setting off on a practical exercise around Waterbeach.
SI Pavitt instructs cadets in map reading. Picture: SSI Sam Cole
The One Star Cadre, under the supervision of Staff Sergeant Laura Reynolds, continued their progression in some APC subjects, namely, navigation, first aid and drill. At this star level, they are introduced to a new weapon system, the Cadet A2 GP rifle, and a number of cadets spent the weekend familiarising themselves in the safe practice and usage of the weapon, under close supervision from an experienced skill at arms instructor, Colour Sergeant Richard Bayliss.
SSI Bayliss gives instruction on the L98A2 rifle. Picture: SSI Cole
An experienced team of adult volunteers, including SMI Jones, SSI Rudderham, SSI Drummond and SI Karen Pavitt worked throughout the weekend conducting WHT’s and running a basic and one star shooting range on the air rifle.
SMI Harris instructs in rifle drill. Picture: SSI Cole
SMI Lee Harris instructed the Two Star Cadre of senior cadets in a multitude of subjects, starting with navigation, preparing route cards and working as a team to put their theory into practice. The cadets then refreshed their Skill at Arms knowledge, by practicing with the L98 A2 Cadet GP riffle and achieving mandatory weapons handling test passes. Day two focused on drill with the introduction of Rifle Drill, taking them one stage further in their continued skill progression.
SSI Bullman gives instruction on the air rifle. Picture: SSI Sam Cole
Captain John Kell MBE, Officer Commanding 3 Company, said: ‘I’m pleased with the commitment of all cadets and adults involved who showed stoicism in the face of adverse weather conditions. As my first camp as OC of 3 Company, it was stress free due to the excellent work and preparation of the Cadet Force Adult Volunteers. I hope this continues as we look to re-grow the Company with our present focus on retention and recruitment.”
3 Coy OC Captain Kell addresses some of his cadets. Picture: SSI Sam Cole
Text by SSI Sam Cole with PI Doug Stuart