Oh what a night! Detachment Commanders Pride..........

13 February 2020

By SI Christine Berry, Bolton (RA) Detachment Commander, No 5 (Anzio) Company

Pictures from the night.

It all started with a conversation between myself and SMI Ian Mackie about traditions within the ACF. SMI Mackie mentioned about the tradition of a Passing Out Parade for the new recruits. That was it, the decision was made, the detachment would have a Passing Out Parade for the new recruits.

The staff at Bolton (RA) Detachment work well as a team so speaking to the staff about the idea of the Passing Out Parade immediately brought about excitement. The preparations begun. The Honorary Colonel Sharman Birtles DL and her husband Graham was invited as well RSMI Dougie Craddock and one of our Deputy Commandants, Lt Col Paul Smillie. The cadet’s families were invited, the Army Reserve Parade Hall was booked, the certificates were ordered, and the rehearsals begun. SMI Mackie agreed to help with the rehearsals for the parade to ensure everything went with military precision on the night.

The night arrived and what a great night it was. Thanks to all the detachment staff and SMI Mackie the night was perfect.

Cadet Sgt Jack Pollard led the cadets into the hall and got the cadets onto parade. The Honorary Col Sharman Birtles was then invited to present the certificates to the new recruits who had all completed and passed 12 weeks Basic Training. A promotion was made to Cadet Cpl Bailey Hadfield to recognise all his hard work and Cpl Emma Sellers was presented with the Silver DofE Award. Well done to everyone.

As the Detachment Commander I was very proud to read out the cadet promise and then watch the recruits saluting the Hon Col before receiving their certificates. Everything went just as SMI Mackie wanted it too; with military precision.

After the presentations was made, which included some made by Lt Col Paul Smillie, a detachment picture was taken before inviting the families back to the detachment for drinks and cakes.

The night really was a fantastic night with praise from the Company Commander, Major Rob Macdonald, Lt Col Smillie, the Honorary Colonel, the RSM, the families and most importantly the cadets themselves who all said they had an amazing night. Speaking with the families about their pride was great and it was particularly nice to meet four generations from one family.

My own personal thanks is to the detachment staff who all worked incredibly hard from the start of the evening to the end when everything was cleared away and the detachment cleaned. The staff team at Bolton (RA) Detachment work hard continuously to ensure the cadets have the best cadet experience.


This is the beginning of the new Army Cadets journey. They have so much more to look forward too.

Looking to join us as a cadet or adult volunteer? Please see below.

The Army Cadet Force is a fantastic youth organisation for young people to be part of. If you are aged 12 and in year 8 and looking for a new challenge and want to have fun, then look for the times and date of a Detachment you would like to join and go along to say hello. You will receive a warm welcome.

If you are over 18 and would like to come along to our next open day for adult volunteers, please contact our County HQ on 01204 512600 to register your interest or click on the link below, complete the online form and information will be sent out to you. Volunteer