28 October 2019
Lieutenant Colonel Richard Long TD from Tunbridge Wells is to be Commandant for Kent Army Cadet Force from 31 October. This is the most senior position in the county, responsible for around 1000 cadets and 200 adult volunteers in 35 detachments across the county.
The role of the Commandant is to command, train and administer the County effectively, and safely, within budget. Other aspects of the role include recruitment, managing staff training and development, appointing suitably qualified adult instructors and officers and ensuring that an appropriate balance is maintained between military, adventurous and citizenship training.
Lieutenant Colonel Richard Long was commissioned into Kent Army Cadet Force in 2016 as Deputy Commandant; he works as a solicitor for his own company and is also a County Councillor. He was also an Army Reserve officer between 1976 and 2018 serving in the Rifles and the Royal Green Jackets. He is the portfolio holder for Local Authority Trading Companies at KCC and sits on a number of boards including the Dandelion Trust for Children (a Charity) which provides help for children in Kent.
The Chief Executive of the South East Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (SERFCA), Colonel (Retired) Patrick Crowley said:
“I am delighted that Lieutenant Colonel Long has been appointed the Commandant of Kent Army Cadet Force. He has years of experience working with young people and will bring a great deal of enthusiasm and common-sense to this outstanding youth organisation.
I’d also like to personally thank Colonel Chris Gilbert DL (the outgoing Commandant) for his 33 years of loyal service given to Kent ACF, rising through the ranks as a cadet himself and finishing as Commandant - the top position in the county. This really demonstrates that anything is possible if you work hard and stay dedicated, he’s a great role model for anyone involved in the ACF."
Lieutenant Colonel Long said:
“I am humbled to have been appointed to lead Kent Army Cadet Force, an organisation which helps young people from all backgrounds in every part of Kent develop and build their confidence in fun but challenging practical settings.”