On Saturday 15th May, the 126 (City of Derby) Squadron Rifle Drill Display Team performed to an audience of general public, fellow air cadets and World War Two veterans at the Duxford Imperial War Museum Battle of Britain Memorial Day.
For the 16 members of the Rifle Drill Display team it was a very nerve wracking experience. Not only did they perform in front of members of the public but their final performance was witnessed by the world’s elite military drill display team, the Queens Colour Squadron.
At 4pm on the Saturday afternoon, the Drill Team formed up to be inspected by the Commander in Chief Air Command, Air Chief Marshall Sir Christopher Moran. The cadets stood proudly to attention as the Commander in Chief Air Command inspected their uniform. Air Chief Marshall Sir Christopher Moran chatted to the cadets and congratulated them on their hard work and excellent performance.
The display team were asked to perform at Duxford by the Regional Commandant following their Regional Lees Trophy inspection a few weeks ago. Group Captain Morrell was so impressed with the team’s performance on the inspection night that he put them forward to appear at Duxford. CWO Elodie Marsh, team captain said, “we were only asked to perform at Duxford two weeks ago. Our team is very young so we had to spend every parade night perfecting our routine. Despite the short notice, the performances went well – it was a real adrenalin rush to perform in front of so many people.”
The 126 Squadron Rifle Drill Team is a unique group of cadets. Their performance requires immense precision and accuracy. The team members are all excellent at drill and enhance this skill when put to music. Due to other ATC commitments and of course, school work, the drill team will only make two further public appearances this year. They will perform at the Cadet 150 celebration in Derby on 26th June. They are also looking forward to taking centre stage at the Buxton Military Tattoo on 11th July.
Squadron Leader Ian Marshall, Officer Commanding 126 Squadron said, “It is important to promote the Air Training Corps in as many different ways as possible. The rifle drill team is a unique asset for the Air Cadet Organisation. It was an honour to perform at Duxford, although we were a little intimidated to perform in front of the Queens Colour Squadron who the cadets admire so much.”