Awards presented to Shetland cadets

March 25, 2024
Group of cadets and visitors.

Army Cadets from Shetland paraded at Fort Charlotte, Lerwick, on 12 March for the annual presentation of trophies for achievements during 2023.

The event was combined with a family and friends night, giving visitors an insight into cadet activities as well as allowing the cadets to demonstrate new skills learned.

Captain Cheryl Haynes, Battery Commander of Orkney & Shetland Battery (part of 1st Battalion The Highlanders Army Cadet Force) took the parade. Also in attendance was Lord-Lieutenant Bobby Hunter CVO, former Honorary Colonel John Taylor QGM and former Commandant Jim Nicolson BEM.

Bobby Hunter, who is also a member of Highland RFCA’s Northern Area Committee, awarded shooting trophies to three cadets: Cadet Leighton Mullay for Best Air Rifle Shot; Lance Bombardier Evie Leslie for Best .22 Rifle Shot; and Bombardier John Falconer for Best Full-bore Rifle Shot with the 5.56mm cadet general purpose rifle. He also presented Lance Bombardier Kira Irvine with the Best Attendance trophy. Kira was a regular attendee throughout 2023, both on parade nights at Lerwick as well as weekends and camps. She continues to keep up her good attendance in 2024.

Presenting the Best Attendance award.
Lord-Lieutenant Bobby Hunter CVO presents Lance Bombardier Kira Irvine with the trophy for Best Attendance 2023.

John Taylor presented the shield for Most Improved Cadet to Cadet Zack Arthur, who has gained confidence and become a very capable cadet. The trophy for Best Cadet 2023 went to Bombardier Kyran Wishart and was presented by Jim Nicolson. Kyran has had a very good year at Brae Detachment and on camps, which he attends when college commitments allow. Captain Haynes then promoted Bombardiers Vaila Thompson and John Falconer to the rank of Sergeant.

Presentation of the Best Cadet 2023 award.
Bombardier Kyran Wishart receives the trophy for Best Cadet 2023 from Jim Nicolson BEM.

This is the last time Bobby Hunter will attend an Army Cadet event in his official capacity as Shetland’s Lord-Lieutenant. All of the adult instructors and cadets wish Bobby and wife Mabel all the best for the future and would like to thank them for the tremendous support given to all Shetland youth organisations for the last 13 years.

The Lord-Lieutenant inspects the cadets.
Lord-Lieutenant Bobby Hunter CVO inspects the cadets.

Captain Haynes commented: “The Army Cadets from Shetland have had another outstanding year which saw many attending camps both on the mainland and in Shetland. The Annual Camp in the summer was at Barry Buddon, near Carnoustie, and this was a great success for both senior and junior cadets who all gained qualifications. This was followed in October by a week-long shooting camp at Dingwall, utilising the ranges at Fort George.

“Additionally, there was a fieldcraft weekend at Voxter with cadets travelling north from Orkney to attend and various other training weekends throughout the year. The Shetland cadets also had the opportunity to experience adventure training and community activities such as the Voe and Cunningsburgh Shows, as well as events for Remembrance Weekend. There have been many individual achievements with cadets attending courses for promotion, Duke of Edinburgh Award activities and courses that promote healthy minds and wellbeing. 2024 is shaping up to be an equally busy, activity-packed year.”

⚫️ Shetland’s Army Cadets are part of Orkney & Shetland Battery, 1 Highlanders ACF, and meet on a Tuesday at Fort Charlotte and on a Thursday at Brae Youth Centre, both locations 6.45pm to 8.45pm. All photos courtesy of SMI Kev Bryant, Battery Training Officer.

Cadet and a cadet adult volunteer shake hands.
Bombardier Vaila Thompson was promoted to Sergeant by Captain Cheryl Haynes.
Cadets chat to family and visitors.
Cadets engaging with family and friends and explaining about new skills learned.