The Royal British Legion’s prize giving ceremony for the Cadet Forces of Buckinghamshire was held in the Railway Club, Aylesbury, on Friday 23 rd March.
Prizes were awarded by Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher, Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, who was accompanied by Lady Aubrey-Fletcher.
The Legion’s newly-formed Mid Shires Band greeted the guests and cadets as they arrived.
The evening was an opportunity to acknowledge and praise cadets’ achievements, and to thank the the adult staff who give up their time to supervise and instruct the cadets.
A range of prizes was presented, including the best cadet from each of the three Forces and for the amount collected during the Legion’s annual Poppy Appeal.
A photographic slide show showed the cadets with their collecting tins in the streets, shops and shopping malls throughout the county.
The evening was hosted by Kevin Taylor, Royal British Legion, who first announced the winners of ‘Best Cadet Award’ for each of the three services. Cadets were nominated by their units and the final selection made by the Legion.
The winners were Sea Cadet Andrew Lindley (High Wycombe), Army Cadet Max Boothby (Buckingham) and Air Cadet Alfie Diplock (Penn). Then the contribution made by the adult instructors was recognised by ‘Best Staff’ awards to Chief Petty Officer John Sherlock (High Wycombe), Serjeant Instructor Price (I Company Bucks ACF) and Civilian Instructor L Tarrant (Marlow).
The instructors are all volunteers and the units of each of the winners were awarded £500, generously donated by Heart of Bucks Community Foundation.
After a presentation, ‘How We Spend the Poppy Appeal’, the cadets’ contribution to the appeal were recognised.
For the year 2017/18 , the cadets have so far collected a magnificent £31,108 towards the £705,399 collected in Buckinghamshire. Certificates of Merit were awarded to the Army Cadet
The Coronation Cup was awarded to High Wycombe Sea Cadets and the Rosebowl to 1811 (Marlow) Squadron Air Cadets. The final cadet award was the Royal British Legion Chairman’s ‘Cadet of the Year’ award. This was a difficult decision to make because of the very high standard of the cadets nominated by their units.
In the end, his all-round commitment to his unit and infectious drive and energy resulted in Cadet First Class Andrew Lindley (High Wycombe Sea Cadets) receiving the award. Due to military commitments, Major General ‘Bill’ O’Leary, Deputy Commander Field Army, could not attend but sent a message to the cadets.
After saying how he never failed to be impressed by the incredible enthusiasm, motivation and commitment shown by the cadets, the General concluded, ‘Regardless of what they do after cadet service, the winner is society, which is enriched by motivated and responsible young people.’