Spirits were high and the sun was shining as requested by Air Commodore Dawn Macafferty for her visit to South and East Midlands Wing’s Spring Camp where she was also joined by the Air Cadet Organisation’s Honorary Ambassador, Group Captain Carol Vorderman RAFVR(T), Central and East Regional Commandant Group Captain Nigel Gorman and Acting Station Commander, RAF Wittering ,Wing Commander James Lapsley.
Over 300 Air Cadets and staff from across the 29 Squadrons in South and East Midlands Wing Air Training Corps are currently attending their Spring Camp at DTE Swynnerton, Staffordshire.
The camp covers a variety of challenging activities for the cadets including fieldcraft, shooting, kayaking, rafting, casualty evacuation, “minesweeping”, rope exercises, “Gun” Run and leadership over the six days of the camp.
The initial phase of the camp covers the “Team Building” phase. This is followed by a four day rotation of training across the range of activities and learning new skills. The week then culminates in a competition day followed by a final parade and presentations.
The visitors were welcomed with a presentation detailing the background to the Wing, the camp and the planning and safety measures put in place. This was followed by a tour of the activities. There were plenty of photograph opportunities as well as demonstrations and questions for each exercise. The Commandant and Honorary Ambassador were also given the opportunity to load the field gun as part of the Gun Run exercise.
Speaking after the event, Commandant Air Cadets commented that the event showed “Incredible organisation, background work and focus on safety. Staff are keeping an eye on cadets but not mollycoddling them. You’re keeping the Venture in Adventure.”
The visit was the first to a Fieldcraft type activity by Group Captain Vorderman RAFVR(T) who, at the end of the day, commented “A brilliant week, congratulations to all involved. The time and energy put in to the organisation by volunteers is remarkable.”
As the day drew to a close, the camp prepared for the drill competition with happy staff and cadets and sending thanks to their guests and wishing them a safe journey home.