Thirteen cadets from 1359 (Beeston) Squadron have just completed their first squadron camp at the John’s Lee Wood site in Leicestershire. The cadets, all of whom have joined the squadron in the last 6 months or so, attended the camp to gain experience in a wide range of subjects as part of the Field Craft Training Syllabus.
Members of staff and senior NCOs were on hand to teach the cadets subjects such as camouflage and concealment, map reading, first aid, leadership and team building as well as guiding and supporting them through the weekend.
The cadets were put into two flights each commanded by recently promoted corporals. The weekend gave these corporals a chance to hone and develop their leadership skills whilst the more experienced NCOs benefited from being part of the staff team and seeing how the camp was organised and run from a staff point of view.
The Friday evening saw the cadets arriving at John’s Lee Wood where they got straight down to erecting their tents and then a lesson in the safe operation of gas stoves was given. The cadets then cooked their own meals in the open air, a new experience for most of them!
Saturday morning started with lessons in the field followed by a walk around the surrounding countryside allowing the cadets to practise their map reading and navigations skills.
That evening a night exercise had been planned to bring together the skills they had been taught during the day. The flights were given a briefing that included specific objectives to complete, assuming they could avoid the enemy forces. This is the highlight of the weekend for many of those attending, especially the staff who relish playing the part of the enemy and ambushing the cadets as they attempt to complete the exercise!
Sunday morning saw more lessons in the field and then after lunch the biggest challenge to the cadets, the assault run. This was a timed run through boggy ground, dense undergrowth and various obstacles. They ended up filthy and exhausted but with huge grins on their faces!
All of the events over the weekend were scored with the results being announced at the end of the camp. The winners of the inter-flight competition were Cadet Corporal Connor Geer’s B Flight, beating Cadet Corporal Anisah Britton’s A Flight by just one point. Individual winners were Cadet Michael Riley-Moore and Cadet Valeria Meraz who won the Best Male and Female Cadet at Camp awards respectively.
The camp was organised and led by Flying Officer Gareth Fowler, all those who attended would like to thank him for the time and effort he put in to ensure it all ran smoothly.
CI Mike Hill
Media and Communications Officer
1359 (Beeston) Squadron