A week last Saturday, eleven elite members of the CCF departed for Wathgil, Catterick to take part in the week long annual camp. Annual camp is the culmination of a year of hard work: a chance for our cadets to put their skills to use and to learn new applications for those skills. A very busy week but great fun with an array of activities put on by 4 Infantry Brigade Cadet Training Team.
The week kicked off with a day out of uniform, enjoying some sunshine while undertaking the assault course used by ITV on the Krypton Factor at Adrenalin. A hard slog through smelly muddy water, mud and more mud! Over energy sapping obstacles, crawling, running, climbing, swinging, balancing and jumping. Every technique is needed to tackle the obstacles. We saw children overcome fears and grow in confidence and self-worth throughout the day.
Monday was the cadets first day in uniform and today was a day of Command and Leadership tasks. Our cadets impressed the instructors with their teamwork, leadership and communication skills. Special mention to Shauna Burns (SAN) for her carrying and piggy back skills.
Tuesday was spent on the ranges firing the SA80 Cadet Rifles from the 100m and 200m firing points. Each cadet went through different stages of shooting and each stage was marked and scored to see if good enough shots to earn the Marksmen, 1st Class or 2nd Class badges. 1st Class Badges were awarded to seven of our cadets. The cadets were then allowed to fire the LSW (Light Support Weapon) on automatic in three to four round bursts and try their hand at clay pigeon shooting. Special mentions to Bruno Pomerncis (SAN) and Mr McNiff who were surprisingly good shots!
Wednesday and Thursday was focused on fieldcraft and an overnight exercise. This involved blank firing and demanded discipline, energy and self-reliance as cadets had to put up their own shelters, heat their own ration pack meals, carry their own equipment and cross some difficult terrain. This gave our cadets the realism of engaging against unknown and enemy forces, for us this meant sending out a reconnaissance patrol.
Our final activity on Friday was Training In Built Up Areas (TIBUA) this exercise had been designed to introduce cadets to a realistic and challenging environment in an urban area. Cadets were taught urban patrolling, entry drills and room clearance.
All cadets completed a rigorous week of training where they learnt a variety of essential skills and should take great pride in what they have achieved. After a thoroughly enjoyable week, the coach journey back was considerably quieter than on the way there.
Please excuse the war stories and bragging rights for at least a week or two!