This week our most dependable cadets visited Middleton Barracks at Calvert Lane and received a warm welcome from local detachment Royal Logistic Corps.
First we were shown a film about the ultimate experience for army personnel – in this case a 2 week exercise in Gibraltar practising firearm skills in the tunnels of Gibraltar Point, and house to house combat in a mock battle sequence. Other potential expedition venues discussed included Cyprus, Canada and the Outer Hebrides. This was met with instant awe from our aspiring cadets, eager to climb the rank and file ladder to gain qualifications and promotions needed in order to take part in such fantastic opportunities.
Youngsters were then introduced to the working world of both regular and reservist personnel, and learned about the abundance of job prospects and the vast skill set offered by armed forces training provision. We discovered thousands of career opportunities via a number of routes into the forces. This was a very useful discussion for many of our students, keen to ask about their own prospective plans and aspirations.
Next we were taken on a whistle stop tour of the barracks, taking in the maintenance hangar and garage, mess, gym, conference suite and training facilities. All around photographs of the detachment’s previous employees, leadership and achievements were proudly displayed. The sense of teamwork and pride was palpable.
Meanwhile, buried deep within the bowels of the lecture zones, our trusty contingent commander and school staff sergeant set out the plan for the coming year and secured potential weekend exercises, rifle days and command tasks with the RLC team. We are delighted to report that during the winter months we will cover our weapons training on our very own site and periodically we will have practical experience events at the RLC rifle range at Middleton Barracks. As the Spring arrives we hope to join the RLC in various weekend activities. The team at Middleton Barracks are very keen to support our visiting training sergeant Dave Knapman in leading cadets through their Skill At Arms training, and enable them to reach the levels of weapon handling competence required to attend summer camp in June. In addition, the most exciting process for any cadet will soon begin as we discussed our first ever promotions to positions of rank. We agreed to appoint 6 positions of leadership from our fledgling detachment, and hope to announce appointments for our most reliable and impressive natural leaders in the New Year.
The evening closed with a clamber onto the giant military vehicle used to transport troops, and to experience its darkness and discomfort. Cadets learned about the risks faced by a fully operational logistics unit while in transit under “hot” circumstances of wartime deployment, and explained the need for the significant roll caging, safety barriers and tight spaces.