It’s been around 20 months since the Band and Drums have played together live, and although they have ‘kept the flame alive’ and achieved huge successes during lockdown, there’s nothing like the feeling of playing live music and the comradeship of a group of musicians being back together! Their camp (and it was a ‘camp’ as they slept out under the stars) was a great success, with time to celebrate the achievements of the past 20 months and re-discover their musical sound in preparation for future events. With five new cadets, it was also important to put some training development in place too!
Saturday evening saw a visit from the Commandant, Gwent & Powys ACF, Colonel Chipp, for presentations of star passes achieved during lockdown and the Band and Drums awards that are usually presented at The Rorke's Drift Concert. A huge congratulations to this year’s recipients, and we will find out a little more about them over the coming weeks:
Certificate of Commendation - Staff Cadet Sergeant Dylan Phillips
The Corps of Drums Cup - Cadet Sergeant Julia Nagy
The Fred Smith Award - Lance Corporal Hannah Russell
The Col. Tim Van Rees Cadet Musician of the Year - Cadet Corporal Madison Chaplin
There were also promotions, and the cadets and visitors were treated to a performance of Staff Cadet Sergeant Zoe Brown’s 4* Solo. The Band and Drums were also presented with an award from the Commandant for their achievements during lockdown.
The Band and Drums also took part in a day of adventure training, and whoever knew just how competitive they would be come?! There was some incredibly skilful shooting, providing tight groupings and high scores on the scorpion range, and the archery, paintballing and climbing wall also went down a treat. For Visitors’ Day (more about that next week), the Band and Drums presented their distinguished guests with a range of music, including a performance from the Corps of Drums and a finale from the Combined Band and Drums with ‘Coldplay Classics’.
The weekend was a huge success, and the Band and Drums are looking forward to their next training weekend in September, followed by varying performances and the National Music Camp in October. Oh, and rumour has it they are planning a tour abroad next year!
A huge thank you to all of those that worked together to make the Camp such a success, including the Band and Drums adults, supporting adults from the County and the Permanent Staff Team. Also, thank you, and welcome, to our new adults who visited during camp!
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Photographs courtesy of SSI Drew and the Band and Drums adults