There were thirteen key awards presented at the ceremony held at Heroes Bar, RAF Coningsby. Warrant Officer (ATC) Nash said about the event, “It was an opportunity for the squadron to shine, in front of our VIP guests, parents, along with awarding the cadets who have gone above and beyond”.

Here the details of the awards, the cadets who won them and explanations why they deserved to be awarded:

The Coningsby and District Royal Air Force Association, Best Sporting Cadet award was presented to Cadet Bridie Mason. She has best represented the squadron at sports on all levels, within cadets and out. Cadet Mason always works hard to make sure that she is on top form and excel in sport.

The award for the Best Cadet (not a Non-Commissioned Officer) that has been considered best overall cadet throughout the year, was presented to Cadet Ethan Stephens. He has been with the squadron for some time. But this year he has shown true determination to show how good he is. Initially, Cadet Stephens kept himself in the background and just got on. He has now grown in confidence and maturity and faced the challenges of the Cadets head on. Cadet Stevens will go out of his way to make sure things happen and will always volunteer for community events. Cadet Stevens also managed to shine when put on the spot and has not shied away from anything.

The Award for Best Academic Cadet when to Corporal Lucy O’Sullivan. She was considered to have put in the most effort to further their cadet development during the past year. Corporal O’Sullivan has always managed to achieve an excellent standard in her academic training. She has taken on the task to make sure that she is one step ahead of others. Corporal O’Sullivan makes sure that she has a good understanding of her subject before she takes any exams and has achieved excellence at every level.

The Martin Baker Award for Best Attendance was awarded to Cadet Sarah Plowman with the best attendance record as recorded on BADER (BADER is the cadet recording system and all cadet attendances are recorded each month) with an attendance of 97.6%. This shows true dedication to 17 Squadron and shows in her performance during squadron nights. This cadet attends most squadron nights, as well as supporting the squadron in the community. She is a keen member and is always willing to try something new for the sake of the squadron.

RAF Battle of Brittan Memorial Flight Award for the Most Improved Cadet was awarded to the cadet who has shown the most improvement both as a cadet and as an individual over the past year. This time the award was be presented to Cadet Verity Dixon. She has shown true improvement in the past year. Cadet Dixon has shown the ability to be part of a team. Her confidence is now starting to show and her ability to put their hand to almost everything and their continuous positive outlook. In addition, Cadet Dixon thoroughly deserves this award as her ability stands out and makes a difference to others and further shows how far she has come over the year.

The Royal British Legion Award for the Best Non- Commissioned Officer, is awarded to the NCO that has performed best overall throughout the year. Sergeant Danny Sutherland received this award. Only promoted this year, he has taken on the challenge with full determination. He is a great role model for other cadets and has been a valued MR ROBIN AYLING member of the training team. Additionally, he has gone above and beyond squadron level, and taken part in many Wing and region activities, sharing his training and experiences with other cadets.

The 1265 (Horncastle) Squadron Air Training Corps Shield for Endeavour, is awarded to the cadet that has been considered to overcome the biggest obstacles in order to fulfil the whole cadet experience. This award was awarded to Cadet Hunter Ayling he has overcome many challenges in his cadet career this year. Cadet Ayling has managed to achieve many new experiences this year and has achieved many firsts. He attended his first blues camp, experienced Clay target shooting, stopped on a War ship, passed his cadet classifications and continued to volunteer for cadet events. Cadet Ayling manages to put aside his difficulties and makes friends with everyone they meet.

The Award for the Best Cadet Training Flight (CTF) Cadet went to Cadet Sarah Plowman. It was awarded to her as she was considered to have made the most effort in developing herself as a cadet during her time in CTF flight. She has also demonstrated continuous effort and progress since leaving CTF Flight. Cadet Plowman was a very quiet cadet when she started in CTF Flight. However, she proceeded to make good progress during her training achieving a final, distinction level pass. Since leaving CTF Flight, she has continued to flourish as a cadet, and maintain her prowess for keeping things to a first class level.

The 41 Squadron RAF, Award for Cadets, Cadet, is an award which is voted for by the cadets on squadron. Each cadet has a chance to vote for the cadet that they feel has risen above the rest throughout the year. This was the opportunity for the cadets to recognise a cadet who stands out amongst all other cadets. This year it is Cadet Verity Dixon.

The Civilian Committee Award. This time the committee decided to share this award with two cadets; Cadet Erika Clark and Cadet James Hurst. Both cadets have been an asset to the civilian committee and turned out to many fundraising events including bag packing at local supermarkets and numerous fund raising events. Both cadets have spent full days, fundraising and made sure that the squadron is seen is the best light. It takes time and commitment from all cadets to assist the squadron with its fund raising, but these two cadets have always made sure that they were a part of the action.

The RAF Coningsby Station Commander’s Trophy for Best Representation of the Squadron was awarded to Cadet Travis Cozens. Who has represented the squadron at the most public activities throughout the year, as recorded on the BADER system. He has represented the squadron at many different events throughout the year including: Remembrance parades, poppy selling, Spa singers events, Battle of Britain parade, RAF 100 parade, RAF Coningsby families day, RAF 100 concert at Lincoln Cathedral and many more. Cadet Cozens is a dedicated cadet and he will assist to promote squadron in the community.

The Ellis Trophy for Commanding Officer’s (CO) Cadet award was instigated by Phil Elliott who was CO of the squadron when it stood up in July 2011. This year the award has been chosen by our Squadron Commander, Warrant Officer Nash. It was awarded to Sergeant Danny Sutherland. The CO considered Sergeant Sutherland best served the squadron and regularly goes above all that is expected of him. Sergeant Sutherland has shown true grit and determination throughout the year, he is a dedicated member of the squadron. He has faced many challenges this year and has always managed to make every effort to achieve their best. Sergeant Sutherland is a great role model to other cadets and stands out as being the one they turn to. He will make sure that every cadet gets involved and is not left out. He encourages other cadets to have a go and supports anyone that is feeling a little nervous. He brings a positive vibe to everyone and will stand strong even in difficult times. Sergeant Sutherland is determined to make his cadet career the most fulfilling that he can and achieve as much as possible.

The RAF Coningsby Station Commanders Cadet is chosen by the CO to act as the squadron representative at station functions and activities. As this cadet may be called upon to attend Mess and Social functions they must be over 16 and have exemplary behaviour and bearing of the highest standard. The cadet must show maturity and display tact within this post. Cadet Matthew Allen was presented this award. He was chosen for his level of maturity and standing within the squadron. As well as showing the mature characteristic needed to fulfil this position. His uniform is always top class! His ability to communicate at many different levels will certainly be an asset when attending the many events required for this post. Cadet Allen will indeed be a great representative for the squadron, as he stands out amongst others, and the CO feels that Cadet Allen will fulfil this duty with the prowess and commitment needed.

The Corps is open to all young people between 12 and 17 and provides a wide range of activities. We are continually looking to recruit not only young people but adult volunteers. If you are interested in finding out more please call on 07928 214981 or email oc.17@aircadets.org.