On Friday 14th December Officer Commanding South & West Yorkshire Wing Air Training Corps, Wing Commander (Wg Cdr) Brian Daniel, paid a welcome return visit to 868 (Mirfield) Squadron for their Christmas Presentation Evening, at Christ the King Church on Stocks Bank Road in Battyeford.
This is one of the two events the Squadron holds each year to celebrate the successes and achievements of the cadets, concentrating this time on the second half on 2018. Squadron members attended in force and were supported by parents, friends and relatives.
The Squadron band provided a stirring introduction to the proceedings, and then the Squadron Chaplain, Rev’d Christine Shedd conducted the formal enrolment of seven new cadets.
The Squadron Commander, Flight Lieutenant Peter Doubell, welcomed everybody to the proceedings and made a short opening address. He started by reminding Wg Cdr Daniel that it was nine years since he last attended the Squadron’s Christmas presentations and highlighted some of the individual success that cadets had gone on to achieve, including 8 who had become staff or committee members with the Royal Air Force Air Cadets, 3 who joined various branches of the armed forces, 2 police officers, a firefighter, a nurse an outdoor pursuits instructor and one even claiming television fame as a competitor on MasterChef.
More pertinently, recent successes included 31 cadets taking up 40 places on residential courses and camps over the summer period, winning the Wing Swimming Championships, both youth and young adult first aid teams winning the Wing competition and progressing to 5th place in the National Competition, and fielding almost half the Gold level Duke of Edinburgh Awards gained across the Wing.
Wg Cdr Daniel then took the stage to present certificates, and in all there were over 180 certificates to be presented to 46 cadets plus adult staff, including:
Recognition of 5 Blue, 4 Bronze, 2 Silver and 4 Gold D of E Awards
25 certificates representing academic progress through the Corps’ classification programme
23 Leadership certificates at Blue (11), Bronze (9) and Gold (3) levels
34 Aviation certificates, comprising 8 First Flight, 9 ground school, 10 Blue Wings and 7 Bronze Wings
Winners of the Inter-flight competition trophy were Tornado Flight, and other trophies were presented to:
Liam Thompson – Gillian Lockwood Trophy for Cadets’ Cadet (as voted for by cadets)
Cadet Warrant Officer Miles Gilroy – Elite Trophy for outstanding long-term service and dedication
Rebecca Thornton – Contribution to First Aid
Jacob Stockwell – President’s Cup for efforts to overcome personal challenges
The presentations concluded with several promotions:
Sergeant Jonathan Barrett
Corporal Sam Cookland
Corporal Liam Thompson
Corporal Rebecca Thornton
After the formalities there was a light buffet for all, and Wg Cdr Daniel and other guests made a point of talking socially with cadets and staff.
The Squadron Commander, Flight Lieutenant Peter Doubell said “2018 has been another successful year for the Squadron and the cadets have performed tremendously throughout; this evening has been a very fitting end to the year with recognition of so many achievements for the cadets, and some staff. This does not come easily and reflects the commitment and hard work by all those involved in delivering our programme of activities.”
Report by Flight Lieutenant P Doubell, 868 (Mirfield) Squadron, South & West Yorkshire Wing ATC
Mirfield Air Cadets meet at the Air Cadet Centre in Mirfield on Huddersfield Road near the Stocks Bank Road junction, on Tuesday and Friday evenings. For more information please contact Flt Lt Peter Doubell on 01924 498 896 (parade evenings only). To learn more about the air cadets click here or to find your local unit click here