Deputy Commandant recognised for 36 years of service to The Army Cadet Force

7 October 2017

Deputy Commandant, Lieutenant Colonel Neil Atherton was awarded the 4th clasp to his Cadet Force Medal which marks 36 years service as a Cadet Force Adult Volunteer. Having joined as a Cadet himself in 1975 Lt Col Atherton has given 42 years to the Army Cadet Force to date. 

The Cadet Force Medal is awarded to Cadet Force Adult Volunteers after 12 years with each additional 6 years being represented by a clasp.

Neil started out as a cadet at the newly formed Arnold Detachment (which at that time was part of C (SNH) Battery and transferred to D (SRY) Squadron in 1978), reaching the rank of 4 Star, Staff Sergeant. After a short break to study he rejoined as a Sergeant Instructor in October 1980, in 1984 Neil was appointed Detachment Commander at Bakersfield and was commissioned in 1985. After 6 entertaining years at Bakersfield, in 1990 he moved to D Squadron HQ as a Captain to become Administration Officer and in 1994 he was appointed Squadron Leader and promoted to Major.

In 1995, Neil was transferred to C (South Notts Hussars) Battery as Battery Commander, a role he enjoyed for over 13 years, proud to command the Unit in which he served as a cadet. In tandem with his Unit Commander duties, Neil took on the additional role of County Sports Officer in 2005 with the aim of developing sport in the County.

In 2008 he joined County Headquarters as County Training officer (CTO) (and Sports Officer) and was appointed Deputy Commandant Non-Military Training in 2012.

In June 2015 Neil was appointed Chairman of the 7th Inf Bde Eastern Region Sports Board, with responsibility for organising and planning ACF sport at Regional and National level.

In October 2017 Neil was reappointed as Nottinghamshire's Deputy Commandant for a further three years and shows no sign of slowing down. 

Neil is a Chartered Surveyor leading a Team of 16 Surveyors involved in specialist valuation work in the Utilities, Transport and Telecoms sector. His hobbies include Golf, keeping fit and travelling. Married to Sarah with two children James and Eleanor.