Lincolnshire Army Cadet Force celebrates centenary

Lincolnshire Army Cadet Force celebrates centenary
Colonel Geoff Newmarch presenting badges

The Lincolnshire Army Cadet force has marked its centenary with a special ceremony at this year’s Spring Camp.

The camp for rookie junior recruits at Beckingham Training Camp – near Newark – saw commutative badges handed out in front of some 300 parents, friends and families.

All cadets and adult volunteers were presented a badge by Colonel Stuart Williams (Deputy Commander 7 Infantry Brigade); Colonel Ian Sackree (Colonel Cadets East Midlands); Colonel Geoff Newmarch (Honorary Colonel Lincolnshire ACF) and Colonel Jeremy Field (Commandant Lincolnshire ACF).

All cadets and volunteers in the county will receive the badge over the coming months.

Senior adult volunteer, Commandant Colonel Jeremy Field, said: “It was an honour to take part in this historic ceremony.

“It was excellent that such senior officers took time out from their busy schedules to present the badges and is a sign of how important the event was in the history of the county.

“In the past 100 years Lincolnshire ACF has provided thousands of youngsters with incredible opportunities, the chance to learn valuable skills and make new friends.”

Detachments across Lincolnshire will be hosting 100th birthday events throughout the rest of 2017 – and it’s all through a chance discovery.

Members of the ACF were unaware the Cadet Force was formed 100-years ago this year until a retired Lincolnshire ACF officer, Maj Derek Sendall, came across a newspaper cutting he had in his possession.

The article is dated 21 October 1934 and it shows the fourth Earl of Yarborough Charles Alfred Worsley Pelham, presenting a standard to the ACF in the grounds of Lincoln Castle.

The article includes a history of the Cadet Force and reports that it was formed at North Hykeham in 1917. It was initially based there before moving to South Park where Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service currently has its headquarters.

ACFs were less prevalent in the country at the time as the government had stopped sponsorships of them in the 1920s due to funding cuts.

Renowned businessman and philanthropist Sir Julien Cahn offered to sponsor Lincolnshire ACF allowing it to continue. Government funding returned after World War Two.

Col Field said: “The centenary is an ideal opportunity for cadets to investigate the history of their detachments.

“Following the research, we are also looking to collate the history of Lincolnshire ACF and release a special publication later in the year.”