HMS Collingwood RNVCC Display Field Gun

Published on 12/11/2021

The workmanship of our Adult Volunteers never fails to amaze us at the Volunteer Cadet Corps!

Over the last few weeks, PI (VCC) Les Carstairs from HMS Collingwood RNVCC took it upon himself to refurbish the display field gun that had been part of the Unit for many years but unfortunately had been subject to major wear and tear having been open to the elements while based in the Fareham establishment.

Having stripped the display gun right back down and removing all the dead areas, PI (VCC) Carstairs rebuilt the display field gun and returned to the Unit lines for a special unveiling by WO1 (VCC) Trevor Coleman, Command Warrant Officer on 11 November 2021.

Deputy Commander VCC, WO1 Baz Hearn RN said “Having been the CO of HMS COLLINGWOOD RNVCC previously, it is absolutely fantastic to see this field gun refurbished and returned to its rightful place guarding over the Unit. BZ PI (VCC) Carstairs and thank you for making this happen, giving our cadets a sense of pride as they enter their Unit”.

HMS Collingwood Field Gun Refurb

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Plymouth Cadets Pass Out

Published on 03/11/2021

On Saturday 30 October, 13 recruits in Plymouth Division Royal Marines Volunteer Cadet Corps ‘passed out’ for duty as Royal Marines Cadets following 5 months of basic training. During a ceremony attended by families and friends, the new cadets were inspected by the Commander VCC, Lt Col (VCC) Chris Spratt. Following the presentation of Pass Out certificates and two awards for excellence, the cadets put on a brief drill display before marching past the Colonel and officially becoming Royal Marines Cadets. Afterwards, cadets, visitors and adult volunteers enjoyed coffee and biscuits whilst formal and informal photographs were taken.

“Each time my son puts on his uniform its like he’s a different person; you have done so much to improve his confidence” said one of the cadets’ mums after the parade. Lt Col Spratt commented later “It’s superb to be able to do these face-to-face events again and its my pleasure to welcome these brilliant young people into the VCC family”.

Plymouth Division RMVCC is still welcoming new recruits (ages 9 to 16) to join its next intake, and of course is keen to hear from adults aged 18 to 65 who might like to volunteer a few hours a week to help deliver the cadet experience. Visit www.volunteercadetcorps.org for more information.

Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire Awards 2021

Published on 20/10/2021

Yesterday evening (19 October 2021) saw the annual SERFCA Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire awards ceremony, which was held at the St Swithun’s School in Winchester, and saw more than 20 people handed a prestigious honour, including two of our very own. Representatives from the Volunteer Cadet Corps were delighted to be in attendance, celebrating the achievements of all involved.

The ceremony saw Cadet WO2 William Weaver of Portsmouth Division RMVCC, being appointed Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet 2021/22 and Mrs Christine Spratt, having recently retired from Portsmouth Division RMVCC after over 36 years of service as a non-uniformed support staff receiving the Lord Lieutenant Meritorious Service Award.

Captain (VCC) Louis Colpitts, Executive Officer (Support) said “It was a pleasure to attend the SERFCA Hampshire Lord-Lieutenants Awards last night, the achievements of the adult volunteers, cadets, reservists and those who support them was uplifting and inspiring. To have two members of the VCC to be presented with awards this evening, makes me immensely proud of their achievements and I look forward to working closely with the Lord Lieutenant and South East RFCA to not only recognise the efforts but to also enhance both the Cadet and Adult Volunteer experience in the future”

Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant’s Awards are presented to members of the reserve forces and cadet organisations of the British armed forces each year and the honours are recognised throughout the Ministry of Defence. The Lord Lieutenant Meritorious Service Award is used to reward long service of high quality and value, periods of intense and exceptional output in support of units and to recognise service to the community. In all cases, recipients must be seen, among their peers and within the communities in which they live and serve, to show outstanding examples of leadership, commitment, innovation and enduring performance in post.

Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenants’ Certificate for Meritorious Service are only one step below national Her Majesty The Queen’s honours.

During this year’s ceremony, Hampshire’s Lord Lieutenant, Nigel Atkinson Esq, presented 14 Meritorious Service Certificates, appointed 5 Lord Lieutenant Cadets, presented a 3rd clasp to the Cadet Force Medal for 30 years service and awarded the Mabway Best Reservist Award across the Combined Cadet Forces, Community Cadet Forces and Reserve Forces.


The Volunteer Cadet Corps are delighted to share the citations of our awards winners below:

Cadet Warrant Officer Second Class William Weaver, appointed Lord Lieutenant Cadet 2021/22

Cadet WO2 Weaver joined Portsmouth Division RMVCC at age 10, fully embracing our activities and has been committed ever since. Intelligent, mature and articulate, William has thrived in adapting to the added responsibility that has come with advancement through the ranks.  

Calm and controlled, his relaxed demeanour masks a determined and enthusiastic approach to activities.  A team orientated cadet SNCO, he enjoys the complete support of his superiors who trust and respect his judgement as well as the respect of juniors to whom he is a role model.  These excellent attributes, allied with a sound sense of core values, allow him to provide invaluable coaching and mentoring.  He is always on hand to support cadets regardless of their age or knowledge. 

His attendance is exemplary on Weekend Field Exercises, Summer Camps, Parades and Ceremonial events, where he sets the highest of standards.   

He is ambitious, receptive to new ideas, and yearns to improve his performance and development.  Indeed, William is currently working towards his Silver DofE Award.  Passionate and well-motivated, he is a smart and eloquent ambassador for the Volunteer Cadet Corps. 


Mrs Christine Spratt, recipient of the 2021 Lord Lieutenant Meritorious Service Award

Over the last 36 years that Mrs Spratt has been volunteering with Portsmouth Division RMVCC, she has been a prolific advocate of the organisation, dedicating her space time to mentor and support the cadets.  Having first become involved as a committee member of the unit’s Parents’ Association in 1984, Mrs Spratt joined as a non-uniformed support staff member in 1987.  In this role she attended numerous summer camps acting as a ‘hut mum’ (welfare support) and then a galley assistant, where one of her jobs was making 150 sandwiches every day.  She then took up a role in the Clothing Store, not just fitting and issuing unform but also repairing and washing kit.  Latterly, she has been responsible for running the unit’s Tuck Shop, often standing for hours in a freezing cold drill shed on cadet nights providing much needed refreshments to cadets and adult volunteers.  Mrs Spratt has also provided catering during ceremonial parades and attended fund raising events. 

Mrs Spratt’s contributions have made a powerful and lasting impression, making a difference to thousands of cadets’ lives across our communities.  She has gone above and beyond the normal four hours a week of which we ask of our volunteers. 

Chivenor Stands Up

Published on 13/10/2021

Yesterday evening the newest cadet unit in the Volunteer Cadet Corps was stood up as the first cadets joined the unit. Hosted by our Deputy Commander, WO1 Adam Hearn RN, and with a packed room kindly provided by the local unit Chaplain, over 30 cadets and their parents or carers arrived to take their first step in their VCC journey. The new cadets now face a period of recruit training covering fieldcraft, drill, Corps history, navigation and uniform inspections as they work hard towards their Pass Out parade in a few months time.

The new VCC unit is hosted by Commando Logistic Regiment Royal Marines at RM Chivenor, just on the outskirts of Barnstaple. The unit is based inside the establishment and benefits from an airfield hangar which will become the cadets’ new ‘home’ – in fact, one of their tasks will be helping to make decorate and prepare it for longer term use.

Chivenor Division RMVCC is the 11th cadet unit in the VCC and will still accept applications from youngsters aged 9 to 16 to join the VCC. We have a waiting list and already have young people aged under 9 eager to join when they can. We are also looking for more adult volunteers to join us and Make A Difference by becoming Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and helping to deliver the cadet experience.

Contact us at chivenor@volunteercadetcorps.org or visit www.volunteercadetcorps.org for more information. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook, just search for @ChivenorRMVCC.

Join the VCC, and Meet The Challenge!

Collingwood Comes Back

Published on 28/09/2021

The VCC is delighted to announce that its unit in Fareham, HMS Collingwood Royal Naval Volunteer Cadet Corps, will be returning to face-to-face training and activities on Thursday 30 Sep 2021.

After an extended period of virtual training through Covid lockdown and local restrictions, the cadets and adult volunteers of HMS Collingwood RNVCC are eager to get back to their unit. Our cadets will pick up their training programme and re-commence activities such as navigation, DofE, seamanship, drill, fieldcraft, and ceremonial. In fact, their first main activity after lockdown is paddle boarding, so they clearly intend on returning with a splash!

We are eager for more people to join us, not just as cadets (ages 9 to 16) but also adult volunteers (ages 18 and above). If you would like to get involved in what the VCC does and would like to be a cadet or help run our activities as an adult volunteer in HMS Collingwood RNVCC please get in touch. Just email us at collingwood@volunteercadetcorps.org for a no obligation informal chat.