Lowestoft Sea Cadets make urgent plea for more recruits

The Lowestoft Sea Cadets inspection evening. Picture: Yiyi Sun

The Lowestoft Sea Cadets inspection evening. Picture: Yiyi Sun - Credit: Archant

Lowestoft's Sea Cadets are in urgent in need of more recruits and adult volunteers as they approach their 50th anniversary.

The group meets every Monday between 7pm and 9pm at the TA centre in St Peter's Street and regularly attracts around 15 cadets, aged between 10 and 18 in junior and senior group categories.

They take part in nautical activities such as sailing, canoeing and abseiling, along with learning about first aid and communications, as well as rock climbing, shooting to music, power boating and sailing.

Earlier this month the group hosted its annual inspection, which included demonstrations including how to rig a topper sail dinghy, a first aid demonstration, how to tie knots, and a talk on meteorology.

Chief Petty Officer Jan Woolston - who has been at the centre for nearly 22 years - said the aim try and raise the profile of the group, with the aim of attracting new members and volunteers.

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'We were floundering at one point and the majority of cadets are new and what they have learnt in the last six to eight months has been brilliant,' she said.

'As we are only a small unit getting back to our feet, we are going for a higher award next year.

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'If anyone out there thinks it sounds interesting, then give us a go, you are guaranteed a real adventure.'

In particular, the group needs adults who are willing to give up a small amount of time to become instructors and join in with a number of exciting events.

Officer in Charge Captain Paul Horton has only been in his role for a month - but said being part of the Sea Cadets gives him 'fulfilment to see the young children develop into valuable members of the community'.

'When I first joined, the routines weren't right and the confidence was down,' Mr Horton said.

'But the evening has been fantastic and the drill was spot on.

'We actually give our youth within this community valuable skills and teach them leadership and self-confidence. These are all things which go forward for their CVs.

'We are lacking in numbers at the moment and we drastically need more cadets and staff to help us. It doesn't matter if they don't have any military knowledge these are things we can teach.'

Twelve-year-old Jay Anderton, who is one of the sea cadets, said: 'I am nervous about the inspection but I am enjoying it. 'My great-grandad used to be in the navy and thought I should I join, and one of my friends at school also came and encouraged me to come along.

'I enjoy learning about the knots and I have met a lot of new friends.'

The group are also hosing a reunion day to celebrate their 50th anniversary on August 8.

Members past and present are encouraged to attend.

For more information about joining the Lowestoft Sea Cadets, visit: www.sea-cadets.org/lowestoft

Is your community group looking for more volunteers? Email joe.randlesome@archant.co.uk

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