2 July 2019

On a lovely warm and sunny Saturday 20 cadets from around the county arrived at Walton Detachment for the start of the penultimate Young Leaders course, led by Pete Spink assisted by CVQO’s Sarah, Elliot and Fran.

After their initial wander around checking the detachment layout and facilities the cadets helped set up the tables for the groups, before settling down to the formal paperwork. Shortly after it was out to start on simple timed team building exercises with lengths of rope.

As the training team had already introduced themselves they moved on to leadership skill discussion during which the cadets drew what they considered their best interpretation of their instructor (As Elliot had been a Sea Cadet they gave him a pirate hat to wear!) placing some leadership skills within bubbles around their tutor.

Although Saturday was a long day for everyone there were plenty of breaks between the workbooks, command tasks and NAAFI it seemed to go quite quickly. In fact as they had all worked so well we were able to get ahead of ourselves for the main assessments on Sunday, allowing everyone a later start and early finish.

Again, the weather behaved on Sunday as each group got soaked completing their “Ultimate Pipeline” command task; they tried different methods of completing the task and none were wrong - some used the poles to suck the water from one bucket, run down the alley and deposit it in the end bucket allowing the ping pong ball to reach the top whilst others tried making long connecting poles and capping the end pole with their hands whilst water was poured down it and continually swapping hands and poles around (often forgetting about water and gravity!) Some cadets had had enough initiative to wear “older non-issue” kit to keep their issued MTP clean and dry. It appeared from their completed surveys this task was their favourite.

In other tasks the cadets were the ships in Battleships on the floor, all having to remember where each had trod before, trying to get across the chequer board without being sunk.

The final activity was the course photograph, kindly taken by Allison Hillier, who also made sure Walton Detachment was available for the weekend and supplied us all with drinks and NAAFI throughout.

The county’s final course will be mid-October (19-20) at the start of half-term; invitations are already out to detachments. This will be held on two separate two days at Waterbeach CTC, where we look forward to having a full 24 cadets in attendance.

Elizabeth Hyslop – Administration Officer (Cadets)

Capt – County CVQO (BTec) Officer