22 July 2020
Major Keith Bloor has recently retired as Officer Commanding for Kent ACF Squadron RE (Royal Engineers), which covers the following detachments in the Medway Towns and north Kent: Dartford, Gillingham, Gravesend, Greenacre, Rochester, Sheerness, Strood, Swanley, Walderslade and Woodlands.
He worked (now retired) as a Team Technician with Indesit Company Ltd, is married with children and grandchildren and lives in Sittingbourne.
Keith has dedicated an amazing 52 years loyal service to the organisation where he has been responsible for over 300 cadets and 33 adults and has seen thousands of young people and adults under his charge over the years.
Major Bloor first joined Kent ACF as a cadet and became an adult instructor in 1971. He has served in a number of the detachments in the Kent RE Squadron becoming one of the first boarded officers to run an open detachment within Walderslade School. His ability to cook in the field is second to none, with his ‘egg & bacon in a bag’ legendary. He is fondly known as ‘annex o’.
He became an Adult Instructor in 1971 within Gillingham Detachment, he took up the role as detachment 2nd in command shortly after and spent the next 8 years at the Detachment finishing at the rank of Sergeant Major Instructor. Outside of the detachment role Major Bloor was a key part of the units catering team and was well known for his cooking in the field.
Commissioned in 1979, he moved to Detachment Commander in Walderslade leaving to become Admin Officer and promotion to Captain in 1994 and promoted to Major in 2014, when he became the Officer Commanding Sqn RE. Contd.///
Major Bloor was awarded the Lord Lieutenants Meritorious Service award in 2009.
He was awarded with his Cadet Force Medal in May 1983, first clasp in May 1991, second clasp in April 1999, third clasp in April 2005 and fourth clasp in April 2011. Major Bloor was awarded the fifth Clasp to the Cadet Force Medal in 2017.
Major Bloor said:
“I have several stand-out moments from my time in the Kent ACF, namely meeting Her Majesty the Queen, with two cadets from the Squadron and I was humbled to have laid the wreath on behalf of the County in front of a packed Menin Gate, Ypres on the occasion of the 29,000th ceremony since the end of the First World War.
The following year I had the opportunity to take the Squadron to Ypres on a battlefield tour and was honoured by taking the salute on the last post ceremony at the Menin gate.
In my many years’ service I have watched shy young people walk through the door and seen them grow and flourish into confident well rounded citizens, I am pleased to have played a part in shaping their lives”.
Colonel Richard Long TD, Commandant Kent ACF said:
“I would like to formally thank Major Bloor for all his hard work, 52 years loyal service shows outstanding dedication and commitment – without such volunteers such as Major Bloor we would not be able to offer the youth of Kent such a wide range of fabulous opportunities that we do today.
Major Bloor is an outstanding role model and mentor to the cadets and an example of what can be achieved within the cadet movement, he will be sorely missed but we wish him a happy retirement”.