A grand total of 145 Upper Fourth and Lower Sixth pupils and accompanying staff attended the annual CCF camp from Sunday until Wednesday this week.
Army, Navy and RAF Sections
Instead of the usual accommodation, this week the CCF camp was held on a type 82 Destroyer, known as HMS Bristol. The ship served as flagship during the 1982 Falklands Campaign and was the lead ship of the Dartmouth training squadron during the late 1980s.
In 1993, HMS Bristol was converted to provide training and accommodation facilities for youth groups. Apart from those in the Navy section, none of the Epsom College pupils would have experienced this type of life before. Phrases such as “pegging in” and “pegging out”, “call the hands” and “pipe down” were part of the pupils’ lives this week.
As well experiencing life on a Royal Navy ship, over the four days of the camp, the pupils completed three stands at Longmoor Camp (shotgun, cadet rifle and confidence course) tour of the D-Day museum, a number of water-based activities at the Portsmouth water activity centre and a number of activities at the Peter Ashley activity centre. Evening activities included harbour visits and bowling.
Those cadets and senior NCOs in the Advanced Infantry left the Camp on Tuesday afternoon to take part in a 24-hour exercise honing their skills in the field.
Army Section – Advanced Infantry Platoon
The Advanced Infantry Platoon of the CCF’s Army section was deployed on a 24-hour overnight exercise to Pirbright Military Training Area.
During the exercise, the Cadets conducted reconnaissance patrols, a night-time ambush, section attacks, cooking in the field, and living/sleeping under ponchos. The Lower Sixth NCOs demonstrated a good level of leadership through the exercise.
The final section attacks were the highlight of the exercise, with each section of eight or nine cadets assaulting an enemy position. This final phase was a great culmination of all the training that has been conducted over the Summer Term.