Copley Sea Cadets Come Aboard
Friday 26th February 2016 16:30 News Stalybridge Posted by Tom Greggan

The Copley Academy Sera Cadets have been officially welcomed into the Sea Cadet Corps in a commissioning ceremony at the school.

The school has had a sea cadet unit since September 2014 but paraded for and were inspected by Captain of the Sea Cadet Corps, Captain Phil Russell RN.

The twenty Sea Cadets, who are all Copley pupils, certainly made an impression on the Captain. He said: “I was incredibly impressed today considering these young people have only been with the sea cadets for just a short while.

“To see the level of turnout both in personal appearance and confidence on parade was exemplary so I was really proud.”

The Sea Cadets’ partnership with Copley Academy came about as part of an expansion programme to get the combined cadet forces (land, sea and air) into state schools.

Cathryn Hamer, Development Worker for Sea Cadets North West explained: “Tameside Sea Cadets (based on Wharf Parade) is already well-established in Tameside; they’ve got over 100 sea cadets already.

“When we were given the task of the cadet expansion programme, I went immediately to Graham Broadbent from Tameside Sea Cadets to ask him if he’d be involved.

“We’ve set up a satellite Tameside Sea Cadets unit in Copley Academy and now the school and the unit work very well in partnership with one another.”

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The school are delighted with the partnership and proud members of staff watched the parade to see another side to their pupils.

Deputy Head Teacher, Lorna Moore, said: “The Sea Cadets have provided opportunities for the students to get experiences that they might not normally get in their day-to-day school life. So for example, the water-based activities they do is not something we can provide normally.

“However, they’ve also done other things such as first aid and it’s also given them opportunities to demonstrate their teamwork and their leadership skills, both of which are part of Copley’s core values and things we want them to improve on in school. This gives them an added string to their bow in terms of the experience they get.”

Miss Moore was just as impressed by the pupils as Captain Russell! “Their level of discipline and the way in which they responded to the drill and the questions that were asked of them during the inspection was really impressive,” she said.

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“We know that our students have these skills and it’s really positive to see them demonstrating them outside of the school environment.”

But what of the cadets themselves? Hannah Combs has been involved since the Sea Cadets were first set up at Copley and has never looked back.

She said: “It’s exceeded my expectations. I thought it was going to be good but I didn’t think it was going to be this good. I didn’t realise we’d be mingling with people from the unit and we were allowed to go on parade night with the others.

“The courses are the best. Everybody will tell you it’s all about the sailing and the powerboating- it’s not. It’s all about the courses and the people you meet.”

Hannah enjoys the Sea Cadets so much, she says she’ll be joining the Royal Navy when she leaves school at 16.