A LETTER FROM Geoff Bowker, Cdr RN (Rtd)
Chairman Unit Management Committee
Weymouth Sea Cadets | TS Boscawen | Sea Cadet Training Centre
Barrack Road | Weymouth | Dorset | DT4 8TZ
T: 01305 780466
A charity registered in England & Wales: 301201
Weymouth Sea Cadets is a busy and extremely well supported unit that provides extraordinary experiences for young people through a huge range of activities based on the customs and traditions of the Royal Navy. There are 14,000 cadets in the UK, across 400 units and supported by 9,000 adult volunteers.
Weymouth unit has 85 cadets on the books with a waiting list for youngsters to join. The adult volunteers in each unit are divided between the uniformed staff that deliver the training and the Unit Management Team (UMT) that provides the environment for the training to be provided. Each Sea Cadet unit is an independent charity and the UMT, of which I am Chair, is made up of the trustees of the charity. As you will be fully aware a charity has key roles that need to be filled. Our current Treasurer will be standing down from the UMT at the end of this FY, after very many years of sterling service, so we are seeking a replacement.
We wondered if any Chamber of Commerce members would consider taking on the role of treasurer to the unit charity. The job is not onerous and there is no requirement whatsoever to have a military or cadet background. Indeed UMT members that have business skills are extremely valuable and involvement with a busy youth organisation is extremely rewarding. Some induction training would be necessary, but this is provided at no cost by the Sea Cadets.
WEYMOUTH SEA CADETS – 2018 ANNUAL REPORT OF ACTIVITIES
Weymouth unit, of Sea and Marine cadets, is in great shape. There are 85 cadets on the books and there is a waiting list for youngsters to join. This shows that the Corps has a lot to offer and that type of activity appeals to the youth of today.
The Unit Management Team has been fortunate to secure funding from various local sources which has allowed the purchase of new boats, sports equipment and provision of bursaries for cadets to undergo sailing courses both locally and offshore. For two consecutive years 12 cadets have embarked in the offshore training vessel TS Jerwood, for deep water experience, some going offshore for the first time.
The cadets have also been out and about in the community and assisting with, for example, poppy selling and helping the local Round Table. This importantly develops team work and keeps Sea and Marine Cadets in the public eye.
We are also delighted and very encouraged that a number of cadets have enrolled on two of the educational programmes that are available to cadets through the Marine Society & Sea Cadets (MSSC), namely Learn@Sea which takes learning to foundation level for GCSE and BTEC courses in Teamwork and Management.
Phenomenal achievements by one cadet need to be highlighted; Weymouth’s Leading Cadet Sam Ray, was chosen to be the Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet for Dorset. Additionally, Sam was a CVQO Pearson BTEC Achievement Award 2018 & CVQO Westminster Award Finalist 2018, the prize for which was a trip to South Africa. Not only that but Sam also received his ILM Level 3 Award in Leadership and Management from Lord Lingfield at the House of Lords. These are extraordinary achievements and show the breadth of opportunities that Sea Cadets can provide; Sam’s astounding achievements will hopefully serve as a beacon of inspiration for other cadets.
Boating qualifications have been the focus of the unit for a couple of years and the unit is growing a strong cadre of dinghy sailors, windsurfers, rowers, kayakers and most other things that float. The training and qualifications are being put to great effect not only for the sheer fun of it but in competition where Weymouth cadets have done well across the board in district, area and national events. And not forgetting the drill teams who have been busy reaching Area and National competition levels. Also, the The Duke of Edinburgh Award training is well underway at all three levels and the number of Weymouth cadets enrolled is far above the national average.
So, a most successful year with the icing on the cake being the news that Weymouth unit is to be awarded another burgee. The 2018 training year was rounded off by a Presentation Night which included a full Divisions Parade, award of cups and awards and to meet the parents and supporters of this terrific Weymouth asset. The guest of honour that evening was the former First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas.
The cadets, staff and volunteers were delighted to hear that the unit has been awarded a Sea Cadet Burgee for its performance and achievements during 2018.