Shoreham Air Training Corps cadets and staff were privileged to represent Sussex at the annual Battle of Britain Memorial Day parade and service.
The 1440 (Shoreham-by-Sea) Squadron joined more than 200 cadets from across Kent in Capel-le-Ferne, near Folkstone, to mark 25 years of the national event.
Cadet Corporal Thomas Worth, 14, said: “It was a real pleasure for us to attend the parade and although it was hard work, it was definitely worth it to be here with the Central Band and the veterans. We’ll definitely be back next year.”
The parade and service commemorates the start of the battle, which lasted until October 1940. They centre on the national memorial, a stone pilot that sits on a clifftop overlooking the English Channel, not far from Dover in an area that became known at Hellfire Corner during the war. It pays tribute all those who flew and fought in the battle in the skies over Kent and Sussex 79 years ago.
Neil Worth, civilian instructor and ATC training officer, said: “In the presence of veterans, invited guests and senior representatives of Commonwealth and allied air forces, including Poland, the cadets joined the Central Band of the Royal Air Force and members of 600 Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force parading the Queen’s Colour of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, in being inspected by the current deputy head of the Royal Air Force Air Marshall, Andrew Turner.
“Speaking to the cadets after the parade, Air Marshall Turner told them how extremely proud he was to be associated with such inspiring young people and thanked them for their efforts during the parade.
“He went on to extol the virtues of service with the air cadets and urged the cadets to take full advantage of everything that the organisation has to offer, including flying, gilding and academic qualifications.”
Following the parade, the cadets and assembled guests were treated to a flying display by two Spitfires from the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, paying tribute to The Few, who fought for freedom all those years ago.
The Shoreham squadron first opened its doors in 1941 and is part of the Royal Air Force Air Cadets.
Cadets take part in a range of exciting activities, including flying and gliding. The squadron is open to young people aged 12, and in year eight at school, to 18.
The squadron meets twice a week in Eastern Avenue, Shoreham, and is keen to recruit new cadets and adult volunteers with a background in aviation to help deliver the best opportunities to cadets.
Anybody interested in joining should contact the squadron via email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.1440sqn.org for more information.