Lancaster cadets reach national finals of competition

A team of cadets from Ripley Combined Cadet Force achieved third place in the Royal Air Squadron Trophy at RAF Spadeadam.

By Gayle Rouncivell
Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 12:30 pm

he group will now go forward to the national finals on March 6 at RAF Halton in Buckinghamshire, making them one of the top 16 RAF-CCF sections in the country.

The Royal Air Squadron Trophy (RAST) is a competition for schools with CCF-RAF Sections, from Scotland, Northern Ireland and northern England including the Isle of Man.

This year there have been 130 schools involved. Each section submits a team of 13 (12 cadets plus a leader) as well as two reserves to a multi-skill competition, with all or a few taking part in the various elements:

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Ripley CCF cadets stand proud after their success at the Royal Air Squadron Trophy competition at RAF Spadeadam last weekend.

*Uniform Inspection: All

*Drill: All

*General Knowledge: All (based on the Air Cadet First Class and Leading syllabus)

*Aircraft Recognition: Two Individuals and two teams of three cadets

*First Aid: A Team of three and one individual cadet

*Air Rifle: Four Team members (total score)

*Command Task: All – A leader, leading team member over an obstacle or to achieve a task

Their hard work placed them in third place and a place in the National Air Squadron Trophy next month.

At regionals they came in first place in dress and deportment and second in drill - an amazing achievement given they were behind the national champions for the last two years the event has run before Covid-19 halted things.

RAF personnel will be visiting the school on the next three Tuesday parades to help the CCF staff improve the teams already high standards. To do so well on its first outing into the competition world is a fantastic achievement.

WO(RAFAC) McAlister, school staff instructor, Ripley St Thomas Combined Cadet Force, said: “I have dealt with the other air cadets in the past and the level of commitment this squad have shown has been really impressive. Hours of ironing uniform, shoe cleaning, rehearsing first aid, drill, etc - all their hard work has paid off.

“The CCF and school staff couldn’t be more proud of this squad’s efforts and we will do all we can to help them achieve at Nationals, which are the top 16 CCF-RAF Sections across the country.”