Cadets and adults from 1st Battalion the Highlanders travelled to Edinburgh to cheer on Scotland for their opening Six Nations match against Italy.
Twenty-four cadets from Inverness and Aviemore Detachments watched the match at BT Murrayfield. For the majority of them it was the first time they had ever watched Scotland play up close.
The cadets departed from the Highlands at 0630hrs on Feb 2 to make the match in plenty of time. Due to the early departure the visit also included a tour of Edinburgh Castle, as well as a visit to the various museums it holds – including the Museum of the Royal Regiment of Scotland which the Battalion is badged under.
After the visit to the castle the Inverness cadets went for a slightly long walk to the stadium to watch Scotland. The highlight for everyone was of course singing the National Anthem, as well as watching Scotland win 33-20 – which they had a perfect view of – from right behind the Italy posts during the first half.
Initial planning for the trip started in the middle of last year when the company applied for tickets under Scottish Rugby’s “Youth Groups and Schools Ticket Offer”, which allows clubs, schools and youth groups from across Scotland to apply for special discounted tickets for matches throughout that rugby season. Similar to the Army Cadet Force’s own Values & Standards, Scottish Rugby has similar values that apply for young people to enjoy Rugby – Leadership, Enjoyment, Achievement, Engagement, Respect – and under these values they want to bring young people to support Scotland in the best, easiest and most affordable way to allow young people to experience these values – and watch thrilling international rugby – in a safe and friendly environment.
The overall planning of the trip was done by Second Lieutenant Debra Ennis (52), Aviemore Detachment Commander, who said afterwards: “This was an amazing experience for our cadets who did themselves proud. The long walk from the castle to the stadium was no problem at all, but the walk back was slightly quieter. There were a few sore throats (and feet) – but it was definitely a resoundingly successful trip.”