12 September 2019
Words by Abi Talbot
Somerset Army Cadets’ Minehead Platoon is celebrating the achievements of two of its cadets, 15 year old Reece Hollingsworth and 16 year old Oliver Bissett.
Cadet Serjeant (Sjt) Reece Hollingsworth has been appointed as Lord-Lieutenant’s Cadet for Somerset, and Oliver Bissett was appointed as Company Serjeant Major (CSM). Both are prestigious appointments, and a reflection of the hard work and dedication demonstrated by the cadets.
Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant Anne Maw is the Queen’s representative in Somerset. Reece will be the Lord-Lieutenant’s link to the Army Cadet community and will assist the Lord-Lieutenant with their responsibilities.
Reece explains, “I was quite surprised to be recognised in this manner, I felt the other candidates were equally outstanding … I’m very proud to be an ambassador for Jellalabad Company. I want to thank my instructors for showing me what was possible. I never imagined when I joined three years ago that this is where I could be. I owe a lot of my success to the support of my family and I am glad I have the opportunity to share this appointment with them.”
For Oliver his appointment as CSM is the culmination of four years of dedication and training, as it’s the second highest rank achievable as a cadet and one that he has worked hard to gain.
It is an appointment that carries a heavy responsibility as it means that Oliver is responsible for the standards of all the cadets in the Company.
“What I have gained by being a member of the Army Cadet Force has truly gone beyond my expectations and I want all the cadets at Minehead Platoon to know that it is a real possibility for them to achieve also.”
Oliver’s dad, AUO Andy Bissett, is a Cadet Force Adult Volunteer with the Platoon and is understandably proud of all that he has achieved in four short years. “The success that both CSM Bissett and Sjt Hollingsworth have had has proven the quality that can be achieved through the values and standards of the Army Cadets.”
Minehead Platoon Commander, SMI Graham Corner, talks of what it means to the Platoon, “Minehead Platoon is quite a peripheral Platoon in the Company, so it is a massive boost … to have Oliver and Reece achieve such high appointments within Army Cadets. It really shows how effective training from knowledgeable instructors can be such a positive influence in the lives of young people.”