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Beaudesert Greens Camp 2009

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2009 OP CANNOCK Recce.  It snowed a lot more than last year.

Last year we had a really good weekend at Beaudesert Campsite, but it was a little cold.  This year we delayed the camp until the end of February and were rewarded with much milder weather.  We were disappointed that our colleagues from Abingdon, Kidlington and Cowley were unable to come, but we had five replies from Banbury Squadron.  The format was very similar to last year, except this time we had two senior NCO Instructor Cadets with us.  We put them to work running the weekend and keeping the team commanders briefed.

OP CANNOCK class of 2009 all graduate with honours and celebrate in true collegiate fashion... Or is it a bit of extreme hat doffing.The exercises were overhauled and cadets were rather shocked to find downed airmen in the form of stuffed coveralls and papier-mâché heads.  Night orienteering, map-work, kwik cricket, stealthy movement, cas-evac, radio-work and observation all featured.  The cadets performed very well – the big exercises were taken seriously and the radio-work was noticeably better than previously.  The squadron would like to send a vote of thanks to FS Bentin and FS Cockburn for their hard work during the weekend.  At one point they were asked how it felt to be playing a staff role; FS Cockburn replied, “My God, it’s so tiring!” (Ed.)

Inspection time at OP CANNOCK.On the 27 February 2009 a group of air cadets from Oxford and Banbury squadrons went to a scout camp called Beaudesert, near Cannock. After arriving at the squadron at 1800 hrs we packed all of the kit into the trailer and then set off for the 2 hour journey, broken up by a brief stop at a service station for a break. Once we got to the camp we had some jokes then got all of the kit into the buildings where we were sleeping, and once every thing was put away we did a quick orientation exercise before heading to bed.  On the first morning we got up at 0640 to wash and cook breakfast before sports. The game was quick cricket and CI Stevens and Cpl Skelton’s team were the winners. After we finished sports we got into our DPMs and did a navigation exercise. After lunch we all rotated around other exercises, including a radio exercise, moving logs for the camp fire and a first-aid exercise.  In the evening we all cooked rat packs for dinner on hexistoves before heading out for our big night exercise, ‘Exercise Dead Duck’. Each team had to locate a local resistance group which would supply us with necessary medical equipment to deal with a nominated casualty which we also had to locate. We had to treat any injuries and evacuate the casualty to a predetermined MedEvac location where a helicopter was waiting to evacuate us.  We all found this exercise enjoyable but challenging in a few areas. After we had finished the night exercise we formed up and marched down to the fire pit for a bonfire and toasting marshmallows which everyone enjoyed after the exercise. When we had finished toasting marshmallows we headed back to the accommodation block for some well earned sleep.

The crack command teem looks worried... the cadets have escaped.After a tiring but enjoyable first day and night exercise at Beaudesert Sunday morning started by cooking breakfast for our teams and the staff - good fun but not without mishaps. After we had finished breakfast we got all our kit together and went out on a reconnaissance exercise where we had to find information on a group of Russian soldiers who were gathered near a pond. After having practiced during the night exercise all of the teams had improved on their team work and communication skills which meant we could complete the exercise better than we could have done if we hadn’t have practised the night before.  When we had completed the mission and returned to base we briefed Flt Lt Levett with what we Cadets cook tea on hexi-stoves.had observed about the soldiers. When all the teams had been debriefed we had to start cleaning and clearing up the area we had stayed in so everyone got brooms and mops. After we had finished cleaning up we got all of our kit out onto the path then into the trailer and cars. The journey back was uneventful and people got some well earned rest after an exciting weekend away.  We improved on all aspects of fieldcraft, but especially on our communication skills. I think the highlight of the camp was the night exercise, as well as the sports on Saturday morning.   We would like to thank all the staff that came on the camp and made it so enjoyable, and special thanks to Plt Off Lodge and Cpl Skelton for their organisational efforts.

Last Updated on Saturday, 02 May 2009 22:20