Longbenton Air Cadets Win Top North-East Trophy!
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By Flt Lt G G Richards - 2344 (Longbenton) Squadron
Longbenton Air Cadets lifted the Durham Trophy for the fourth consecutive year to be recognised as the Top Training and Development Air Cadet Squadron in Durham and Northumberland Wing.
After a consistent run of form spanning half a decade, Longbenton Squadron has been delivered another title. It means Team LB retains the Durham Trophy to break its record treble win last year.
The Station Commander of RAF Boulmer, Group Captain Mark Coleman, flew in to congratulate the young people and to present the trophy amid jubilant scenes at a special celebratory dinner to mark the occasion.
“I thoroughly enjoyed my evening with the young people and congratulate them on their very impressive achievements, along with their volunteer staff who show great dedication and commitment,” said Grp Capt Coleman.
He added, “There is such a positive atmosphere around the squadron and everyone should be very proud of their achievements, both individually and collectively. I wish Longbenton Squadron continued success.”
Speaking after lifting the trophy to rapturous noise, Cadet Emilia Ross, 15, of Killingworth, said, “The Squadron is a friendly, fun and exciting place to be as we all help each other to achieve.
“We all enjoy the activities we do like flying, expeditions, engineering, electronics, sports, leadership and fieldcraft and we’re extremely happy to have won the Trophy again.”
In the past 12 months, the young people have earned, amongst others, over 30 Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards, almost 30 BTEC qualifications, 6 ILM qualifications and 4 flying scholarships.
Squadron Commanding Officer, Flight Lieutenant Gary Richardson said, “It’s very special to win again; it’s coming up to my eighth year here at Longbenton Squadron and it has been great fun.
“It’s an absolute pleasure to command a great group of young people and a great staff team, with a tremendous amount of support from the community we serve; it's a very special place which is why our youngsters enjoy progressing and achieving whilst having fun.”
Speaking of the future, Gary added, “We’re building a strong squadron, not just one that sees the odd achievement earned now and then or wins trophies every now and again, but does so consistently. The past is the past but the future makes me very excited to be here.
The Benton based unit is currently open to new members in Year 8 and above.
If you’re in Year 8 or above and wish to join Longbenton Squadron, please visit www.2344.org.uk for further information.
For more information please visit the Squadron website