CCF Cadets attend King’s Coronation concert and perform honour guard duty at Buckingham Palace
Through his volunteering and CCF cadetship, Cadet Sergeant Will Midwinter was one of the 20,000 people invited to the King’s Coronation Concert on the 7th May, at Windsor Castle. Will says
“This was not only an honour but also an amazing experience as it was my very first time at a concert – it is certainly a very hard act to follow!
“Approaching the 1000-year-old Castle, from The Long Walk, I could see the impressive Copper Horse statue, a tribute from George IV to his father, George III. It was impossible not to feel a strong sense of history and importance of this national occasion of celebration. After joining a very jovial crowd to do what us Brits do so well, queue, we then passed through a very thorough security check. My mother and I entered the grounds, and walked towards the Castle, following the sound of the music playing from DJ Scott Mills. The specially constructed circular stage, with the castle as its backdrop, was certainly a sight to behold. The sun was starting to go down, but the crowd were just warming up.
“King Charles arrived to a rousing rendition of the National Anthem, twenty thousand Union Jacks waving in the air. With such an amazing line-up, including Andrea Botticelli, Katy Perry and Paloma Faith, it is difficult to choose a favourite moment. However, for me, the highlights of the night were definitely the spectacular drone performances and Lionel Richie’s act - I was taken aback watching a 73-year-old man with that much energy! The night concluded with Take That (which was probably my mum’s highlight of the evening).
“It was a fantastic and very loud evening filled with memories that will last a lifetime, and I was very grateful to be part of this historic and memorable occasion.”
HONOUR GUARD DUTY AT BUCKINGHAM PALACE
On Friday the 19th May WHSB Cadets, Sergeants Samuel Birdsall, Jacob Mellor and Will Midwinter, were honoured to be selected as three of twenty cadets in the region to steward the Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award Ceremony at Buckingham Palace. The ceremony was attended by His Royal Highness, Prince Edward, the Duke of Edinburgh. The day began with an early 5:20am train to allow the cadets to arrive early and prepare at the palace.
In advance of the ceremony, the cadets assisted in the setup of the garden, including putting up 10-foot-tall deck chairs. The cadets worked as a team, applying the training and values that they have developed through the CCF. Official duties began at 9.00am, consisting of distributing programmes and welcoming award winners. Once all the guests had made their way onto the grounds, the cadets were set at posts, ready for the Duke of Edinburgh to begin his speech. The cadets were given the role of honour guards, placed along the walkway along which His Royal Highness made his way, meeting the award winners and VIPs.
After a long shift, meeting lots of other cadets, award winners, and volunteers who have provided a wealth of voluntary contributions and work for their communities, the cadets were able to enjoy a traditional Buckingham Palace cup of tea, a sandwich, and cupcakes. Inspirational speeches were given by a variety of VIPs, including England footballer, Jill Scott. One of the highlights of the day was meeting and speaking with the legendary Brigadier Holmes and hearing all the stories he had to tell. It was a spectacular day filled with opportunity, experience like no other. Will, Jacob and Sam were very grateful to be given this amazing opportunity to serve those who have given so much to their communities and to hear their stories.
The day culminated with an opportunity to meet The Duke of Edinburgh personally as he thanked each cadet for their service and posed for official photographs with the group.