Winterton cadets welcome VIP guest at proud passing out ceremony
11:47 13 July 2014
Gallant youngsters marched in time as they stepped out for their prestigious passing out parade in front of friends, family and a VIP guest.
General The Lord Dannatt - the former head of the British Army - was among the crowd who gathered to watch as marine cadets from Winterton’s 901 troop TS Fearless showed off their skills, in a celebration of their year’s achievements.
Dressed in perfectly pressed uniforms and highly polished shoes the youngsters performed drum, band and drill displays for the invited guests, which also included Great Yarmouth Mayor Marlene Fairhead and other town dignitaries.
Lord Dannatt, Chief of the General Staff from 2006 - 2009, chatted to each cadet as he inspected the troop and said it was a “great honour” to take the passing out ceremony on Saturday.
Addressing the cadets he said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be here and to have met you all this afternoon and to see your parade. I want to congratulate you for your turn out, drill and drums. Particularly also the juniors’ and seniors’ drills display, they were absolutely excellent.”
He also offered the youngsters some advice, telling them to aim high, be the best and act with courage.
“There are two types of courage; when the goalie saves that last penalty, that physical courage we all understand. But moral courage, doing the right thing at the right time, that’s harder but it’s even more important,” he added.
“I congratulate you that as you go through life you’ll continue this particular trend of being courageous and having the moral courage to know what the right thing is, and then to do it.”
He then handed out awards recognising the achievements of both youngsters and the voluntary staff that run the troop, including the community accolade and best new cadet title.
In his address Captain Paul Dodson, 901 Commanding Officer, listed some of the group’s most memorable achievements over the last three years, which included representing Normandy veterans during a trip to northern France in 2012, being awarded the freedom of the borough.
But he said nothing could beat securing Lord Dannatt’s attendance at this year’s parade, which would be remembered for “many, many years to come”.
Captain Dodson also praised the hard work cadets had put in to preparing for the ceremony and the commitment of the voluntary staff, without whom the unit “would not exist”.
■ For more information about 901 troop visit www.ts-fearless.org.uk