The Combined Cadet Force (CCF)

The Combined Cadet Force (CCF) provides a fun, varied and challenging co-curricular programme in military skills, leadership and adventure training.

It aims to develop important skills for life including leadership, responsibility, self-reliance, independence, teamwork, endurance, determination and service to others.

Cadets meet weekly on Tuesday afternoons to participate in a range of activities making full use of the schools’ 1,200 acre site. Weekly activities include Drill (Marching around), weapons training, shooting, fieldcraft, communications, navigation, and first aid. Senior cadets are taught to teach the junior cadets, therefore they deliver most of the training each week.

The contingent attends field weekends (out of school) during Michaelmas and Lent term and an expedition week during the summer term. Other activities, including sailing and flying are scheduled around the RN and RAF availability throughout the year.

Cadets are invited to attend camps and courses each term, with annual Easter and Summer Camps, one of which is military and the other adventure training. The junior cadets (aged 15) are invited to attend a multi-activity adventure training course, while the senior cadets (aged 16 – 18) are invited to attend specialist adventure training courses which can lead to civilian qualifications. Courses include hill walking skills, mountain biking, rock climbing, canoeing and kayaking. Skiing is available each winter and overseas courses too. All these opportunities are heavily subsidised by the Ministry of Defence.

Senior cadets are encouraged to attend external military lead leadership courses, which are available during most half-terms.

The CCF provides support to students completing their DofE Awards up to Gold and runs a summer bronze expedition each June for cadets participating in the scheme. Attending the CCF can count towards either the “Volunteering” or “ Skills” sections of the DoE programme. All CCF courses count towards the Gold residential requirement.

An annual Mess Dinner celebrates the efforts and achievements of the cadets over the academic year. The format follows closely the traditions of a British Army Officers’ Mess. Although primarily intended to be fun, the dinner also offers students the opportunity to learn the etiquette and protocol of formal dining in a military mess. The dinner includes a presentation of the Pooley Sword, the contingent’s “Sword of Honour” alongside other awards. During this dinner, Year 12s are informed of their appointments for the following school year, which perform in an acting capacity from the beginning of study leave.

Formal parades each year include the Remembrance Service and the Final Parade when the outgoing senior cadets formally hand over to the incoming senior cadets. Biannually we have a formal military parade, when a service officer comes to inspect the contingent.

The contingent has a Royal Naval Division, an Army Platoon, a Royal Air Force Flight and the Training Company of UF (Year 10) trainees, split down into East (Avenue) Platoon and West (Avenue) Platoon (previously known as New Cadre Training). These platoons are led and trained by Senior Cadets and supported by adult staff. Membership is entirely voluntary and open to UF students (Year 10) and above.

The contingent numbers around 150 cadets and has 14 adult Officers and Senior Non-Commisioned Officers, led by Major John Hughes, who served 30 plus years in the Parachute Regiment. He is supported by Cadet WO1 (RSM) McAuliffe and Cadet WO2 Crouch. The RN Division is Commander by Lt Olivia Berriff, supported by Cadet WO2  Hinton. The Army Platoon Commander is Capt Karina Sherwood supported by Cadet CSgt Trourle. The RAF Flight Commander is Flt Lt Matt Austen, supported by Cadet WO2 Small. The Training Company Commander is Lt Hannah Williams, supported by Cadet WO2 Van Huet Lindeman. The contingent is also supported by Cadet WO2 Jacobson, who is our Drill SNCO.



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