Tell us about your ACF career so far...
I joined the ACF as a cadet in Sep 1991 (Bromham Det Beds ACF). it was a rocky start as I contemplated leaving a few times.. I think I couldn’t handle the discipline. After that phase I made some great friends and really enjoyed the ACF. I left the ACF as a 4 star Cdt Sgt Maj (The senior cadet in the County - back then it was rare to have a cadet RSM. In those days if you had passed SCIC you were exempt doing the AIC (known as ITC) so I transfered straight from a cadet to an Adult in Nov 1997. In 1999 I completed my AI’s course at Frimley and my small and full bore range courses. In Sep 2000 I took over as DC of Kempston Det which was historically a large Det but due to changes in DC’s they were down 4 cadets Parading (previously been in the 40-50). I had a great team at Kempston and the following annual camp we took 22 cadets! By the time I finished as DC in 2008 we had 47 cadets regularly parading.
In 2002 I was promoted to SMI after passing the KG6 course in 2000. I took over as Coy Sgt Maj while still running Kempston Det. In 2001 I went to Blanford and completed the advanced sigs instructor course. In 2002 I was also appointed county Sigs Offr (only for about a year). In 2004 I was also appointed the Cty Trg Sgt Maj in the rank of WO1.
In 2006 I attended the DCCT course and in 2007 I was appointed county RSMI while still running Kempston Det. In 2004 I was also the PMC. Also in 2007 I completed the army rifle association clay instructors course. I loved teaching fieldcraft, navigation and drill. I also set up NCO cadres and leadership courses for senior cadets and revamped the JCIC courses.
On amalgamation (Apr 2008) I was appointed RSMI for Beds & Herts. In 2009 the Comdt asked me to take acting command of 5 Coy as their OC had resigned. I did this for about 9 months whilst still RSMI. At AC 2009 I was RSM (didn’t have a PMC so had to do that too), Acting OC and TO (didn’t have a TO)... that was hard but very rewarding! Once we got an OC late in 2009, I was asked to stay on as TO which again I did whilst RSM.
In 2011 I was commissioned and carried on as TO for 5 Coy. In 2013 I was appointed ACTO and was part of delivering the new adult induction syllabus and navigation. We also revamped all the senior cadet training. In 2016 I took over as CTO and in 2019 took over as OC 2 Coy.