Army cadets from Fenland receive special visit during annual county training camp
PUBLISHED: 10:53 05 August 2019
Army cadets from Fenland had a surprise visitor drop into see them at an annual training camp last week.
Members of the Cambridgeshire Army Cadet Force, including representation from Wisbech, March, Chatteris and Whittlesey, welcomed Sgt Johnson Beharry VC COG to West Tofts Training Camp near Thetford during the eight-day experience.
Sgt Beharry addressed three groups of 80 cadets, as well as joining one group in the field as they underwent training.
Each presentation saw Sgt Beharry give an inspirational account of his life from being a small child in Grenada to the present day.
Cadets listened to how Sgt Beharry struggled during childhood and the steps he took to change his life to avoid "getting into trouble" by joining the British Army.
Sgt Beharry was awarded with the Victoria Cross in 2005 for bravery after saving 30 members of his unit in Iraq, as he also talked about his medical condition, including a period on life support and his road to recovery.
Cadets then had the chance to ask questions and learn more about the JBVC Foundation, set up by Sgt Beharry to steer people towards a better life.
During the camp, which lasted between July 27 and August 3, a record number of cadets were put through their paces at the annual event by taking on numerous challenges.
Members showcased what they had learned during Detachment training in activities such as shooting range work, canoeing, clay pigeon shooting, archery and a mobile climbing tower, plus drill and marching.
The 350-strong force were greeted by other visitors, including Richard Barnwell, Vice Lord Lieutenant of Cambridgeshire; Cllr Michael Hill, mayor of Wisbech; members of the Cambridgeshire 876 Remembered Project and Ray Bisby, deputy police and crime commissioner.
Colonel Mark Knight MBE DL, Commandant for the force, said: "It was a cracking eight days for the cadets.
"They worked hard, played hard and I am sure enjoying a rest once back home.
"Being away from home without the access to Playstations, phones and undertaking our training builds confidence and making new friends."
Speaking on Sgt Beharry's visit, Col Knight added: "The cadets were buzzing, especially after presenting Sgt Beharry with a birthday cake for which he proudly cut into small pieces to enjoy with the cadets.
"However, I am not too sure that the chorus of happy birthday was that well in tune!"
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