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42 NAVY NEWS, JULY 2009
Sheffi eld
Raleigh
pays
Strike up the bands!
win for
tribute to
WHITSTABLE unit has hosted
Laforey
destroyer
the largest East Kent District
band contest in several years.
Entries from five unit bands and
guard
two solo entries from other units
ALL eyes were on Sheffield on a
involved more than 50 cadets plus
AFTER a sixth consecutive
Sunday in early May.
adult instructors – including, for
win in the Area armed guard
Admittedly, many were on the
the first time in 50 years, TS Lynx
competition, the Northampton
World Snooker Championship at
from Dover.
team were keen to bring home a
the Crucible Theatre, but just 250
TS Vigilant hosted the event at
prize from the national contest at
metres away others were casting
the Gorrell Tank car park, which
HMS Raleigh.
their minds back 27 years in
was partially closed off by the
They did better than that,
paying tribute to sailors lost in the
council for the event. taking the title for best guard, the
South Atlantic.
A large crowd of supporters prize for best routine, and guard
Staff and cadets from the
and the general public gathered commander POC Jack Mitchell
Sheffield unit joined veterans at
to watch some high-quality won a trophy for being the pick of
Sheffield Cathedral to remember
bandsmanship and an excellent the bunch as well.
the loss of Type 42 destroyer HMS
display, as well as a variety of AC Harry Boyde was also at
Sheffield, along with 20 of her
styles, in the four competition Raleigh after winning the area
ship’s company, on May 4 1982
divisions – solo bugle, solo drum, competition, and was just shaded
during the Falklands War.
novice class band and contest into sixth place at the nationals.
A wreath was laid at the
class band. Back on the water, members
memorial plaque outside the
Whitstable’s parents and of the Northampton and
cathedral, after which standards
supporters association, aided by Wellingborough unit, both cadets
were dipped and the Last Post and
unit chairman Dawn Craven, and instructors, introducing seven
Reveille was sounded by a bugler
provided a constant flow of hot pupils from Standens Barn School
from TS Sheffield.
and cold drinks and snacks on a to the joys of sailing.
● The VIPs’ view of the Whitstable Band performing at the East Kent District competition
This was followed by a short
sunny day – and the buzz is that Part of the Royal Yachting
act of remembrance inside the
the cake stall was very popular. units turn out at the competition, this year too. (New Romney), POC Michael Association’s OnBoard
cathedral, where the ship’s bell
East Kent District Officer and I could foresee in the future Entries (winners in blue) were: Collar (Whitstable), AC James programme, the four-week
of HMS Sheffield is mounted as Lt Cdr (SCC) Allan Robbins every East Kent unit having its Solo bugle: LC Phillip Goldsmith (Ashford);
course finished with the children marina
a memorial to the 20 men who RNR, the guest of honour at the own band.” Webb (Whitstable), AC James
picking up a RYA Stage 1 dinghy marina Novice Class Band: TS
lost their lives when the ship was competition, said: “Unit bands are The competition winners Goldsmith (Ashford); Triumph (Herne Bay), TS Lynx
certificate.
attacked. a great way of raising the profile of will progress to the Area Band Solo drummer: LC Samuel (Dover), TS Invicta (Folkestone),
A party of cadets from the unit marina
The names of the sailors the Sea Cadets. competition at Portsmouth in Martin (Ramsgate), AC Sam TS Veteran (New Romney); also had the opportunity to visit
who died were read out, and “It was very encouraging to see September – and Whitstable are Thomas (Herne Bay), AC Phillip carrier HMS Illustrious while the marina Contest Class: TS Vigilant
the Commanding Officer of TS representation from 70 per cent of a hot tip to take national honours Evenden (Dover), AC James Reid (Whitstable). ship was making an official visit
Sheffield tolled the Sheffield bell to London in support of the Fly
20 times, once for each victim.
SW takes
Navy 100 celebrations.
As part of a comprehensive tour
Two units
of the ship, the cadets visited both
the galley and mess decks to see
what life on board was like.
clean up
national By way of contrast, they
also paid a visit to World War
TWO units dominated the
crown
2 cruiser HMS Belfast and to
HMS President, the riverside
Grampian District Sea Cadets
RNR ‘stone frigate’ which acts
regatta, held at Stonehaven. SOUTH West Area once again
as a training base for maritime
The home team took four of came away with the honours in reservists in the London area.
the seven titles – Boys Open, Girls the National Drill and Piping But perhaps the highlight of
Open and Junior Boys pulling competition held at HMS recent weeks was the presentation
and boat handling (oars) – while Raleigh. of the Thomas Gray Memorial
the Sea Cadet unit of the year, Teams from units have to get Shield to TS Laforey and
Peterhead, picked up the other through district and area contests Diamond, reflecting the unit’s
three – Junior Girls and Junior before they can compete with the position as the second-best in
Section pulling and boat handling best from around the country. the country after Peterhead unit
(power). And the 400 or so youngsters HMS Caledonia.
The winning teams went on who vie for the trophies at
to represent Grampian at the Raleigh produce “an awesome
Northern Area event at South display – brilliant”, according to Taunton’s
Queensferry (boat handling) and one of the Corps officials who
Greenock (pulling). knows the ropes.
privilege
MP calls in
For drill events, senior cadets
will stand aside and give up to
80 commands for the squad to
TAUNTON unit were privileged
on Putney
follow with precision in a display
to once again provide the Guard
● AC Michael Vann demonstrates how to sail a dinghy in the confi ned spaces of a canal during
which can last up to 20 minutes.
of Honour for the town mayor’s
A DOZEN cadets from Putney
Loughborough’s Canal Boat Festival
Those competing for piping
inaugural dinner.
unit hosted a visit by their local awards will have learnt around
The cadets were on good
MP.
Sailing with precision
20 pipes which again require
form, and their smart dress and
Justine Greening is vice discipline and precision in terms
impeccable behaviour won them
chairman of the Conservative of length of sounds.
plenty of praise – one of those
Party with the responsibility for And uniforms must be in
dishing out the praise was the
youth, and was shown a range of perfect condition, with badges
mayor himself.
activities as well as given a tour
BLUE-WATER sailing? demonstrations of the art of dinghy handling at the
worn in exactly the right place.
T aunton’s Commanding Officer,
of the unit.
Pretty easy, some would say – plenty of space to town’s annual Canal Boat Festival.
The South West beat off a
CPO (SCC) Geoff Kerswell, said:
The MP said: “The Sea Cadets
manoeuvre. This year OC Connor Morley and AC Michael
challenge by Eastern Area to
“I was very proud of the standard
offer young people in Putney a
Same goes for the coastal fraternity in the Solent Vann took a Topper for trips along the Grand Union
take the honours in the drill
of both dress and behaviour from
wonderful chance to get involved
and the like; miles of sea-room to play with. Canal, while colleagues gave demonstrations of power
competitions, and while the
my cadets tonight.
in a range of exciting activities on
Try sailing on a canal – no margin for errors boat handling.
piping competitions were neck-
“We are always honoured to
the Thames, as well as developing
there. Cadets also showed their pulling skills, and there
and-neck between South West
perform our duty at this function,
their skills and having some fun
But cadets from Loughborough unit proved were also fund-raising and recruiting over the two
and Southern, it was the former
and we wish the Mayor a successful
as well.”
themselves equal to the task when they staged days.
who took the overall laurels.
time in office.”
Helping hands at Guildford
A WORKING party from the who provided sailors from amongst presentation by Mike Evans, the
Royal Navy in Portsmouth spent the shore-based personnel enjoying Guildford unit chairman, who took
a highly-productive week at the harmony time or recovering from the opportunity to increase the
Guildford unit to help make the injury before heading back to unit’s footprint in the community,
place a little more ship-shape. rejoin units of the Fleet. before the RN party were given a
Seven junior rates, led by a chief But that was not the end of it. tour of the unit, watching cadets
petty officer and co-ordinated by On Tuesday evening the party training on the water.
Capt Chris Air RM, got stuck into also helped the RN Schools Liaison Although a trial evolution – it
the business of refurbishing TS Team, who gave a presentation on is hoped to roll out this initiative
Queen Charlotte over the course current issues affecting the Royal to other units nationwide in due
of five days.
Navy, after which the youngsters course – the week was deemed a
During their stint they creosoted
listened to a presentation by tremendous success by all those
the unit’s boat shed, completely
members of the RN Museum. who were involved.
repainted Trimmer Hall – the
Finally, the cadets were given Mike Evans said: “We are
unit’s indoor gym – and stripped
the chance to look at and handle much smarter than before, and
out and refurbished one of the
a number of valuable artefacts have hopefully tapped into a few
unit’s older classrooms.
brought from the museum. potential chequebooks for future
The initiative came from the
And even then the sailors were funding, too!
new Naval Base Commander at
not finished. “Thank you very much for your
Portsmouth, Cdre Rob Thompson,
On the Thursday evening role in this important pilot and
they hosted a hot buffet supper please pass on my thanks to all
● The RN ratings get stuck in to
the task of refurbishing parts of
for a large number of VIPs and concerned.
TS Queen Charlotte in Guildford
local dignitaries to show off their “Any time the RN work party
achievements. want to come back, we will gladly
Picture: LA(Phot) Owen King
The guests were treated to a accommodate them!”
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