During the week Saturday the 7 th August 2010 to Saturday the 14 th August 2010 , five Cadets from 2028 (Southam) Squadron joined 32 other Cadets from Warwickshire and Birmingham Wing for their Annual Camp at the Royal Air Force College at Cranwell. The journey was a little longer than everyone thought but it gave the Cadets the opportunity to make new friends whilst sat in the jam-packed coach.
On arrival at RAFC Cranwell everyone had to go through security but once inside the first task was to tuck into the first meal at the mess which everyone put great effort into! After the meal each Cadet was issued their own room and the opportunity to settle in and unpack for the week ahead. Once everyone had changed into their uniform the Cadets headed over for the Camp briefing by the Camp Commandant , Squadron Leader Harrison. It quickly became obvious what they had let themselves in for! The Cadets were split into Flights for the week and told they would be in ‘competition' throughout the week. After the briefing, everyone was given a tour of the Camp to get to know the various locations they would use during the week. This was followed by a quiz; the scores going towards the inter-flight competition.
Later that evening, the Cadets took part in a fire service exercise; the task was challenging and involved the loosing team getting soaked by the highly powered hoses! It was a knockout competition, with a few of the Cadets from 2028 coming out in the winning Flight!
The Sunday morning was an early awakening and set the standard for the following days! Once everyone had marched to the mess and eaten their full English breakfast, they piled on the coach to travel to Newark Air Museum . There was a quiz at the Museum, which once again went towards the inter-flight competition. Once again some of the 2028 Cadets were in the winning team! After visiting the Museum, the Cadets had a packed lunch and then went for some free-time in the City of Lincoln which gave everyone another opportunity to get to know one another. Everyone then travelled back to Camp for their tea which was quickly followed by the Camp Commandant 's quiz, which once again went towards the on-going infer-flight competition.
On the Monday, after breakfast, half of the camp attended a College Hall Tour whilst the other half visited the RAF regiment for an orienteering exercise. The tour of College Hall was amazing, to see where the new Officers of the Royal Air Force are trained and view some portraits of those who have ‘passed out.' In the afternoon the groups swapped over. Then it was time for evening meal. The evening was spent in the bowling alley for a few games and then off to bed ready for the next day.
After breakfast on the Tuesday, everyone went to RAF Conningsby to visit the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight which all the Cadets found very interesting. After lunch back at Cranwell the cadets then re-visited the RAF Regiment and took part in the low ropes exercises which was quite challenging but fun. The evening activity was weapons handling training, in which the Cadets got the opportunity to, gain their WHT for the No 8 rifle.
The Wednesday started with the Cadets practicing their drill for the competition on the Friday. After the Drill practice the Flights visited the Dominie and the flying clothing sections followed by dinner. After the evening meal everyone did PT and then off to bed.
Thursday was a full day on the range which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. After dinner the whole camp attended the cinema to view ‘The A-Team'.
Friday started early once again and after breakfast everyone got their kit ready for the dreaded drill competition in the afternoon. But first the Cadets went to an RAF Careers presentation followed by yet more P! After lunch came the Drill competition, with B fight coming out on top. Everyone watched and supported their Flights before going off to their evening meal. After dinner there was a camp debrief followed by the presentations and then a disco which allowed all the cadets to relax and have a last opportunity to have fun together before the journey home on the Saturday.
Saturday morning came and it was time to say goodbye for the Cadets. After a final room inspection everyone grabbed their cases and bags and climbed on to the coach for the long trip home. It wasn't very long before most of the Cadets fell asleep!
All the Cadets from 2028 Squadron thoroughly enjoyed their Annual Camp and have recommended it to the other Cadets for next year. One thing they learned quickly was that Squadron Leader Harrison fills every day so no one had any problems with sleeping! For my first Annual Camp as an NCO it was certainly instructive, enjoyable and challenging!