From the 13th to the 15th of May 2016, two of 2195 Long Eaton Squadron’s Air Cadets (Cadet Connor Strickland and Cadet Will Moss) attended a field craft camp at John Lee’s Camp Site near West Bridgeford. On this camp they acquired many skills to help them in the wild and in later life.Friday: 18:00, the two Cadets arrived at the camp site. Once all of the Cadets were rounded up they were told to put up their tents and get ready for the weekend. 18:30, tents up and ready to go! 19:00, it was now the Cadet’s time. So that meant putting everything in their tent and just relaxing. 20:00, the Cadets were formed up into one big flight and put into their flights for the weekend.
Cadet Strickland was in C Flight and Cadet Moss was in D Flight. After the flights were sorted out it was time for bed…
Saturday: The Cadets were briefed on the Day’s plans and were given ration packs. The Cadets had one hour to cook their food and pack their day bag. Once the hour was up The Cadets were formed up and smartly walked down to the Obstacle Course for team building exercises.
The Obstacle course was an area of grass in the woods which was designed to help the flights to get to know each other. There was a basher, a spider’s web, and The Lava Walk, Plus some other exercises, the Flights then rotated around the course. These exercises forced the Cadets to work together within their Flights to achieve the objective. For Example, The Circle. The Flight who were on The Circle game had to make a circle and hold hands with the person in front of them and get everyone to face outwards, but if they lost grip they had to start over.
Next was the Spider’s Web. This wasn’t actually a spider’s web! It was lots of rope attached to two trees. The Flight’s task was to get all of the Cadets in their flight through the holes made by the rope in 10 minutes -the twist was you could only use each hole once. This again forced the Flight to work in unison.
Next was all about living and moving in the wild. The Flights all started with a certain activity and rotated. First was shelter arrangement. The Cadets were talked to about what a good shelter is and where a good shelter could be placed. Once the talk was done. The Flight had to find themselves a good shelter and alert the officers when ready. As the Cadets sat there- crammed into a dip in a path concealed by a holly bush. The Officers asked them for the pros and cons of the spot.
Once that was done it was time for movement in the field. The cadets went over all the movement in the field theory then had a go themselves. Then they went on a patrol practising all the movements and techniques they had been taught.
Next was Camouflage and Concealment. The instructions were: Put on cam cream, then wait until everyone had finished painting themselves. Once everyone was finished the cadets got into a single file line and were told that we were going to walk along a path -there were hidden objects scattered around and if one was spotted they were to shout “seen”. The cadets found two CDs and a beret but didn’t find the hidden Sgt, webbing or day sack.
Soon the cadets put their camouflage to work. The task was to hide along the path and the Officers would come along to try and find the Cadets.
Soon it was Lunch- An hours break and the Cadets were ready again! By this time everyone got along and the Cadets all knew each other and were laughing and joking as a unit. The next job was to actually build a shelter within their Flights. It was getting dark-so the Cadets ate their dinner and prepared for a Night Ex. Cadets ready to go! They were briefed and went to find a base. The objective was to find a casualty and help them and find bio-weapons, (glow sticks). If the Cadets ran into another Flight they had to creep up on them, tap them on the shoulder and say “captured”. D flight won the Ex overall with Cadet Will Moss finding the weapon while running away from two B Flight members and capturing two C Flight members.
On Sunday: The Cadets packed away their bags and tent and left them side by side. They all went to the Fire Circle and in their flights made a fire. D Flight’s was huge! Until an Officer stomped it out for fun.
Next was the Log Run, the two 2195 Cadets had never done this before and they were in for a shock. The Flights had to put a massive log onto a stretcher and run round a course at the swamp they had to put down the stretcher and run round to the other side of the swamp then jump in and wade through the mud and water and sticks and leaves and lost boots and get out at the other side pick up the stretcher and complete the course and there were 2 laps.
Cadet Will Moss said “On the second lap I fell face first into the swamp and was completely covered in mud, water, sticks and leaves, It might not sound great but believe me it was extremely fun. I’m keeping my eyes peeled for the next one- I would love to go again!”
Once the log run was done the Cadets got changed into civilian clothing. Then they had a final parade and awards were given out. Now it was time to go, the Cadets said their goodbyes to their newly made friends It was time to go home!
written by Cadet Will Moss