… let us look back at some of the highlights of 2016 – a busy and successful year for the Battalion.
Training and testing for the APC continued as always and in addition to the many company camps throughout the year, there were the BATTALION CAMPS during the long Easter weekend at Barry Buddon and at Altcar for the two weeks of Annual Camp.
The first competitive event of the year was the 2UP QUIZ which replaced the Relay Quiz which had been running in the Battalion for over 30 years. A Pl RHF was the first detachment to be awarded a trophy in 2016.
The year also started with a week of SKIING by Battalion cadets in the resort of Alpendorf. Other OVERSEAS TRIPS followed later in the year including THE POLAND PROJECT, the SOMME BATTLEFIELD TOUR and the BELGIUM BATTLEFIELD TOUR.
At the end of the return leg of last year’s EXCHANGE VISIT TO CANADA our friends from the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada had a two week visit to Scotland which ended when they joined the Battalion at Easter Camp.
SMALL BORE SHOOTING continued to produce impressive results including in the News of the World Small Bore competition, with A Pl RHF the winners and 2 Pl RSB the runners-up. At the UK Small Bore Championships at Bisley the SHELL COMPETITION was won by A Pl RHF and in the INTER SERVICES the ACF team (from 2 Pl RSB and A Pl RHF) were runners-up to the ATC.
In FULL BORE the Battalion had a successful day at the 51 Brigade Target Rifle Shooting Competition at Barry-Buddon with our A Team having a clean sweep – winning every trophy.
It was also another successful year in SPORT winning all the trophies at the ACFA Scottish Athletics Championships and all but one of the trophies at the Scottish Cross Country. There was also considerable success in other sporting events including winning the Junior Boys, Senior Boys, Senior Girls and the Relay Cup at the Scottish Swimming Championships. In Tug of War our boys and girls teams were both winners and in Five-a-Sides the Junior and Senior Boys were winners with the Senior Girls the runners-up.
Battalion cadets also made a major contribution to the success of the Scottish team at the ACFA NATIONAL ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIPS held at Grantham in June. The Scottish team were the winners of Class A (Junior Boys) and were third overall in the championships
Our ARENA DISPLAY with the theme of FUN, FRIENDSHIP, ACTION and ADVENTURE was staged at the Battalion’s Training Centre in August, giving invited guests the opportunity to see the wide range of activities undertaken by today’s Army Cadets.
In July four members or former members of the Battalion were at the Palace of Hollyroodhouse in Edinburgh to receive their DUKE OF EDINBURGH’S GOLD AWARD certificates in the presence of HRH Prince Edward, The Earl of Wessex.
Cadets from 2 Pl RSB Motherwell represented the Battalion at the 51 Brigade ALBAN SODGER COMPETITION held in Edinburgh Castle in October and following an excellent presentation were declared the winners
Over the last year cadets in our PIPES AND DRUMS detachment have performed at various public performances and played at Balmoral Castle in the presence of Her Majesty the Queen. A number of cadets had their individual musical achievements recognised.
Over 50 cadets from the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards detachments at East Kilbride became the FIRST CADETS IN SCOTLAND to wear the cap badge of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers following a re-affiliation ceremony in August.
In October, cadets from D Pl RHF remembered a LOCAL HERO when they attended the unveiling of a plaque at Nitshill train station dedicated to Sgt John Meikle MM VC a soldier who was awarded the VC posthumously for his gallantry at Marfaux, during the 4th Seaforth advance along the River Ardre, where he was killed in action in 1918.
Cadets were out and about throughout the Battalion area in early November to support POPPY SCOTLAND. In Glasgow city centre alone there were around 200 cadets and adult volunteers encouraging shoppers to wear a poppy with pride. And it is hoped that last year’s Glasgow Saturday total of almost £16,000 will have been beaten this year.
We started our look back at 2016 with the quiz, the first Battalion competition of the year, but there were others both in and out of camp throughout the year and ending with the LEAN CUP Air Rifle Competition won by 6 Tp Scots DG and the TABLE TENNIS competition won by 1 Pl REME
It was also the year we said goodbye to Colonel Pat O’Meara who is now Colonel Cadets 51 Bde & HQ Scotland and welcomed Lt Col Alex McNamee as our new Commandant.
There were many other notable events in the year included COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT work by a number of detachments, ARMED FORCES DAY, REMEMBRANCE SUNDAY and the moving story of a cadet, when on a battlefield tour, laid a cross at the grave of her relative, who, at the age of 22, had been killed in action in France in 1917. We called this story WHEN HISTORY IS PERSONAL.
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