126 City of Derby Squadrons Rifle Drill Display Team gave an outstanding performance at the National Armed Forces Day in Nottingham on Saturday 29th July. The young team pulled off a heart stopping display of Rifle Drill which gained praise from the thousands of people who watched.
In absence of the Queens Colour Squadron, Derby Squadron were asked to display their sharp Rifle Drill moves in front of members of the public, serving military men and women and dignitaries including members of the Royal family. During the warm afternoon, the nervous team were preparing for most of the team’s first public performance. Despite the youth of the Derby cadets they impressed with their flawless drill skills and discipline.
126 City of Derby Squadron are high in demand for events such as the Nottingham Armed Forces Day, including performing for large military tattoos such as Birmingham. Their trademark is performing to pop music instead of traditional military style music, which seems to draw attention from all ages. 126 are the only cadet unit that do rifle drill in the whole of the Air Training Corps!
Sergeant Elodie Marsh and CI Joshua Bray choreographed the innovative routine and took risks, choosing very difficult moves which enthralled the audience. Sergeant Marsh has been choreographing the Rifle Drill Display Team for two years and has performed in the prestigious team as a cadet; all her experience clearly prevailed. The members of the Royal Family that attended were The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, who shared their appreciation to the cadets’ impeccable uniform and slick drill. Praise also came from high ranking military officers who commended the youngsters.
Squadron Leader Ian Marshall (MBE) said: “I’m amazed by the cadet’s commitment to the team. All their hard work paid off, it was fantastic.”
Once the performance had finished, the cadets were allowed some well-deserved free time to enjoy the rest of what the Armed Forces Day had to offer. This included a performance from The Military Wives, re-enactments from military personnel such as the Royal Marines and displays of impressive military vehicles.
A good and successful day was had by all and they look forward to Birmingham Military Tattoo later in the year.