22 December 2017
Words and pictures by SI Alex Young/HQ Jellalabad Company
It’s been a busy time for Army Cadets from Jellalabad Company who took part in the signing of the Somerset Armed Forces Covenant (SAFC) at Taunton Titans Rugby Football Club on Saturday 4th November where the Titans received the MoD Recognition Scheme Silver Award.
The Armed Forces Covenant encourages local communities to support their local armed forces community and vice versa, promotes public understanding and awareness of issues that affect the armed forces community, recognises and remembers the sacrifices made by the armed forces community and encourages activities that help to integrate the armed forces community into local life.
The Covenant is a promise from the nation to those who serve. It says we will do all we can to ensure they are treated fairly and not disadvantaged in their day-to-day lives. This includes offering injured servicemen and women and bereaved families extra support where appropriate.
Cadets then spent the day selling poppies in support of the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal, raising £334.38.
Saturday 11th November saw the Taunton-based cadets supporting the Poppy Appeal by selling poppies in Taunton town centre, when 37 cadets turned out with smiling faces and smart uniforms and raised an astonishing total of £1501.96.
On Sunday 12th November over 60 cadets attended the Remembrance Day service in Mary Magdalene Church followed by a parade through the town centre to Vivary Park for a Service of Remembrance followed by a march to the Royal Marines Memorial in the park where a wreath was laid on behalf of Jellalabad Company.
All cadets behaved in an exemplary manner during these events, with the OC, Maj Tim Tatler, commenting, “I am very proud of all of you guys who attended the parade in Taunton today. You all were excellent in your behaviour and conducted yourselves in the view of the public to the highest of standards.”
“Well done, to all Adults and Cadets.”
The weekend of the 1st-3rd December saw 132 cadets and 33 adults from Jellalabad Company taking part in Exercise Dartmoor Defender at Okehampton Camp. Cadets arrived at 08.30hrs and were allocated their accommodation and then split into cadres.
A wide range of training took place over the first day, including 1 Star & 2 Star First Aid and 1 Star & 2 Star Navigation, with the Basic cadre competing in a round robin of activities including shooting, Skill at Arms on the L98A2 Cadet GP Rifle, drill and military knowledge.
The senior cadets attended a BTEC briefing from CVQO representative Kerry Baker. On Saturday training finished at 17:00hrs to allow cadets time to prepare for Christmas dinner which was served by the company adult staff during which cadets exchanged secret Santa gifts. After dinner cadets attended a disco and wore off their final energy reserves.
Sunday saw cadets up and in for breakfast at 07:30hrs then onto the parade ground for the company parade. Further training followed the parade with cadets in their star level cadres.
At 08:45hrs the March and Shoot teams attended a briefing with the first team leaving at 09:00hrs, followed by further teams leaving at 20 minute intervals. A march around the camp followed by a shoot on the Dismounted Close Combat Trainer (DCCT) saw cadets from Bridgwater Platoon emerge as the winning team with 2nd place going to Bishops Hull Platoon.
Cadets who weren't taking part in the March and Shoot competition were tested on all they had learnt over the weekend and results show that a total of 275 Star passes at Basic, 1 Star and 2 Star were achieved over the weekend.
After lunch cadets and adults ensured the camp was clean and tidy and ready to hand back. This was followed by a final company parade where cadet promotions took place.
Cadets left camp tired but very happy after another successful Jellalabad Company weekend.