Basingstoke school The Vyne is taking on their second year challenge of assisting with the establishment of Everest Academy’s own Combined Cadet Force.

The Vyne school has had a combined cadet force since 1918. Within their cadet force, the cadets have had many exciting opportunities, including rifle shooting and flying, also their annual appearance at Basingstoke’s Remembrance Parade. The cadet force is a refuge for many of the cadets, assisting them to better their self confidence and personal development skills by being introduced to ideas of challenge and public speaking. When speaking to the most senior cadet at the Vyne, Cadet Colour Sergeant Thea Logan she stated: “When I first joined cadets, I suffered from a lack of purpose, academically and personally. Now, thanks to cadets, I’ve found that direction - and even if I lose it I know that’s okay.” Many cadets, such as Logan, stay on to develop exceptional leadership skills and become promoted through Cadet NCO ranks, they do this by achieving a number of great things within the Cadet force. One of these is an instructional technique course, where the cadets learn to be the instructors at the front of the classroom mentoring the younger cadets. As many may know, the Friday sessions are almost wholly run by the senior cadets and NCO’s, just with adult supervision to ensure safety. 

In September of 2022, the Vyne took on a small number of Everest students, they then took in more in January of 2023. Now, it’s “recruit season” for them and they’ve taken on even more, and with the Vyne recruits have racked up almost 60 new recruits who have come to see and experience the cadets. The recruits have so far been introduced to foot drill, fieldcraft, leadership and even some basic skill at arms using the L98A2 Cadet GP rifle. The exciting opportunities of cadets are once in a lifetime experiences for most of these people, the collaboration has allowed for friendship and teamwork between the schools in Basingstoke. Cadet Lance Corporal Carter Ross said; “I love the collaboration because it has brought out my character, made me create new friendships and has built me further, as a person and leader in some scenarios.” Each cadet has a clear passion for the organisation and its aims to not only ensure exciting opportunities for young people, but build their personal skills and employability levels to be a better citizen in future.

Other organisations run for young people are a staple of the future and inspire them to find their place. It is imperative these groups are kept running and stable, the importance of finding community is shown to reduce crime and increase the likelihood for people to get into university, get jobs and ensure they grow to be good people. Alongside this, many of the friends people make at these organisations become lifelong and meaningful.

If you are interested in learning more about the Vyne CCF, they are holding a parents evening at the school on the 2nd of February where some of the older cadets are given the opportunity to talk about their experiences in cadets in front of recruits’ parents in order to inform the parents, also to assist the development of confidence in the cadets. Similarly there is a page on the Vyne school website explaining the cadet force and even featuring a video to show off the exciting activities they get up to.