On Friday 16th January 71 CCF cadets and 10 staff descended on Longmoor Camp for a weekend of training. Friday evening was spent stowing kit in stores and sorting out bedding, and then getting some - highly valuable as it would turn out - rest.
Saturday saw the bulk of the training. All cadets were up and lining up for breakfast by 0650. Room inspection was at 0800 and with this concluded, the army section moved out into the training area to begin their programme. The RAF section stayed in camp and worked on some map reading and orienteering exercises before also moving to the main training area, which was a large forest 10 minutes away from the main camp. After a quick warm up exercise, the RAF cadets were taught how to move through a wooded area in groups by Bradley Craven and Ed Bezant. They were then split into two sections, with one group learning how to set up bashas, and the other learning camouflage and concealment techniques. All of this would come in useful in the night exercise that was to follow.
The night exercise began at 1830 that evening. Cadets would have to make their way through the forest in groups of 4. Their mission was to reach an enemy encampment, about a kilometre or so from the drop off point, where they would gather intelligence for as long as possible before returning to their vehicles at 2000. What they did not know, however, was that they were being stalked by an armed enemy patrol. Some groups were found and attacked, though all cadets managed to make it back to their vehicles, and some cadets found that not wearing reflective gloves at night is probably best when trying to remain hidden!
The night ended with all cadets very tired, however with enough energy to celebrate Jerel Yankah’s birthday with some pizzas and cake.
On Sunday, the RAF section worked through a carousel of leadership and teamwork tasks before departing the camp at 1400.