November 21st 2013

“It’s great seeing your work come to life”

An active father of two from Hinckley in Leicestershire has spoken about how he makes the most of his time off by juggling fatherhood, being an Army Cadet Force (ACF) Officer and playing the bagpipes.

Lieutenant Alex Calver, is Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Rutland (LNR) ACF’s Training Officer for B Squadron, who are based in Leicester. Alex’s Training Officer role means he has the responsibility to plan, organise and coordinate a range of cadet activities throughout the year from navigation lessons to paintballing and making sure transportation is in place.

Alex said: “It’s great seeing your work come to life and seeing cadets learn new skills in an enjoyable manner. Although the role I do can be challenging at times, it is not about me, it is about how I, and my team of adult volunteers, can work together to organise activities and continue to improve the range of things cadets can get involved in.”

On a day to day basis Alex, aged 33 years, works at Marsden Direct, an exhibition and printing company, as an Operations Manager.  He has learnt to manage his time to the best of his ability switching from his civilian role to his ACF role and parenthood through strict time keeping.

Alex said: “As I have developed my ACF career this has had a positive influence on my day-to-day working life. As an ACF Officer I have to be responsible and accountable for each of the activities I organise and coordinate making sure the cadets are safe at all times, no-matter what activity they are doing or where they are. Delivering projects and thinking on my feet has helped me to become a better manager at Marsden Direct too.

“I will honestly say that being an Officer has helped me to become mentally stronger and more confident to lead my team to success. I’ve received excellent training through the ACF which means I am now happy to deliver presentations to hundreds of people at one time as well as being better equipped to communicate information to smaller groups in my workplace.”

Alex joined LNR ACF as a cadet in 1993 and in 1999 became an adult volunteer. After being an adult volunteer for around 12 years he felt he had a better understanding of how the ACF and individual positions worked so decided to work towards being a commissioned ACF Officer soon after.

Becoming an ACF Officer means individuals have the opportunity to inspire and lead others as well as benefit the future of the youth organisation.

Alex continued: “My family, friends and my employer are really supportive of my ACF role as they understand how much I get out of this experience personally. As well as my ACF commitments though I’ve been learning to play the bagpipes and hope to start up a pipe and drum band in the ACF in the future.”

LNR ACF are recruiting ACF Officers now to find out more call 0116 2779701 (please select option 2 for recruiting) or email