Following a series of successful camps, courses and musical performances last year, the CCF has made a great start. Weekly training has focussed on a Tri-Service Programme of skill-at arms and preparation for November’s Remembrance weekend, where Upper Sixth Cadets will provide a Guard of Honour for our Call to Remembrance and the Corps of Drums will parade in the Lord Mayor’s Show, televised on BBC One. This year, the Field Gun Team will join the Mill Hill School CCF float and this will be the first time that any Cadet unit has paraded a Cadet Field Gun.
Our partners in the Sea Cadets at the Welsh Harp Boat station laid on two thoroughly rewarding courses inviting Cadets from across all 3 sections. A small group of fortunate Cadets now hold The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) sailing qualifications and internationally recognised powerboat qualifications. The RYA Powerboat level 2 qualification is effectively a boat driving licence and enables the holder to hire and operate displacement and planning craft on inland and coastal waters.
Each year the Corps of Drums rebuilds after a long summer break and with appointments changing any lots of new recruits, following the departure of the previous year’s seniors. Sofia D (Cedars) is the new Drum Sergeant and Corporal Theo M (Weymouth) the new Lead Drummer. Foundation Day is often the first parade of the year and a test of the corps’ capability. Ably led by the new Drum Major Dante K (Weymouth), their performance was outstanding and a testament to the influence of the Senior Cadets as several young recruits took part wearing uniform for the first time that day.
The Corps then delivered a superb performance in the Lord Mayor’s Music Competition at Guildhall Yard, Central London in front of the Representative Lord Mayor Alderman, Sir Andrew Parmley, Colonel Cadets HQ London District Col. Iain Denison and the Director of Music Band of the Irish Guards Capt. Peter Brydon. The static display was flawless and was considered by the judges to rival the standards of Regular Army musicians. Sergeants Sofia D (Cedars), Aryan D-B (Weymouth) and Damianos L (School) , Corporals Benjamin R-F (Winfield) , Theo M (Weymouth) and Etienne H (Priestley) and Bass Drummer Matthew O (Weymouth) are commended for an exceptional performance. The display concluded by bugle soloist Alex H (Cedars), with what were clearly nerves of steel to play such an accomplished Last Post in front of a military audience.
During the half term, members of the Fifth form aspiring to be CCF Cadet instructors will attend a Method of Instruction Cadre at Crowborough camp, hopefully returning as NCOs and newly promoted to Lance Corporal.