Students from The King Alfred School Academy among those receiving Cadet awards

By Jill Dando News

Students from The King Alfred School Academy in Highbridge, Somerset were among those receiving Cadet awards.

Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge Sea Cadets unit held its annual awards evening and AGM when it opened its doors to cadets, parents, supporters and guests.

The school is part of The Priory Learning Trust and has a Jill Dando News Centre.

The annual awards were presented by the Unit’s President, former Burnham Sea Cadet and retired Commodore Mike Knott CBE, after a presentation given by the Unit’s most senior cadet speaking on the subject of the Cadet Vocational College Westminster Award.

Mike said: “The enthusiasm and dedication of the cadets shines through and that’s only made possible by the tremendous effort put in by their volunteer instructors.  As President – and a parent of a serving cadet – thank you for making these dreams a reality.”

The event, held at Burnham and Highbridge Sea Cadets‘ HQ in Cassis Close, saw seven awards presented for the past year.

  • Best Attendance: Cadet Finley, having attended 95.1% of all available parade nights
  • Highest Boating Hours: Able Cadet Towan, having achieved 279 hours on the water
  • Most Qualifications: Able Cadet Towan, having earned 17 different awards – roughly one every three weeks
  • Endeavour Trophy: jointly won by brothers Ordinary Cadets Fred and Stan
  • Cadet’s Cadet of the Year: Able Cadet Oliver, having been selected in a poll of all the Unit’s cadets
  • Junior Sea Cadet of the Year: Leading Junior Cadet Brooke
  • Cadet of the Year: Petty Officer Cadet Philippa

A number of promotions and other awards were presented after the main annual awards by the Somerset & Dorset District Officer, LtCdr (SCC) Simon Vokes RNR.  These included BTEC Level 1 Certificates in Teamwork and Personal Skills for Uniformed Youth Organisations and RYA advanced sailing modules and a rare Dinghy Instructor qualification.

The cadets’ Commanding Officer, Lt (SCC) Dom Gregory RNR, said: “We have the privilege of working with an exceptionally motivated and talented group of cadets at the moment and they never been a stronger, more cohesive group.”

“They make our jobs as instructors very easy as they egg each other on to success after success, constantly raising the bar of expectation through their own effort.”

He adds: “Selecting our winners may seem fairly straightforward but with such a high standard set by every single cadet the race for each award was so much closer than they realise.  I think we’re going to have a really difficult job to pick our winners next year!”

2024 will see the introduction of at least one new award recognising the cadet, or cadets, who contribute most to the Unit’s fundraising initiatives, both internal and external.

The other proposed new award will recognise the Unit’s Environmental Champion.  If any business or organisation wishes to sponsor either of these new trophies they are welcome to contact the Unit’s Commanding Officer for more information.

Burnham-On-Sea & Highbridge Sea Cadets is a registered charity that has supported thousands of young people in the area to learn nautical skills in nearly 50 years of service to the local community.

Recently, a Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge Sea Cadet became the first local cadet to be nominated for a prestigious award. Earlier this autumn, we reported Burnham and Highbridge Sea Cadets received £1,500 to support their youth work.

The Unit has 40 cadets aged from 10 to 17 currently attending, supported by a small team of instructional adult volunteers.

For more stories from Jill Dando News click:

Story and Photos from