The Shortest Night after The Longest Day 26.06.12

The RAF Section strike camp after a night under canvas at RAF Cranwell following a Night Exercise in which navigation skills, bushcraft and intelligence were tested in equal measure.

The RAF Basic Section cadets were undertaking the final element of their first year training in which mapping, the taking and following of bearings, field craft and movement through woodland in the dark were carried out without the aid of torches as checkpoints were visited in turn.  The now traditional exercise was followed by soup and bread supplied by the Candidates’ Mess and a very short night’s sleep in testing conditions including strong winds and driving rain.  Thanks to the skill of the Junior NCO instructors who gave invaluable advice regarding the construction of “bashers”, the junior cadets emerged unscathed at daybreak to cook breakfast for themselves and strike camp so that they could then move across Cranwell to take part in a simulated live-firing practice using the Dismounted Close Combat Trainer at which a number of them excelled.  A welcome hot lunch was taken in the Candidates’ Mess and then a rather lengthy journey back to Loughborough was undergone due to a broken-down coach and roadworks at Beckingham!  All those who took part returned safely!