News

January 23rd 2018

Meet the estates department

East Midlands RFCA's Head of Estates Martin Capewell on site

East Midlands RFCA's Head of Estates Martin Capewell on site

East Midlands Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA) exists to support reservists, cadets and members of the wider Armed Forces community.

This support is offered in a number of different ways from engaging with employers to communicating about all the excellent work reserves and cadets are doing across the East Midlands. However, there is another crucial way the RFCA provides support.

The estates department are responsible for maintaining the huge number of reservist and cadet properties that are scattered throughout the East Midlands as well as building new properties and helping redevelop older sites where possible.  

Building a new Cadet Centre in Derby

The new Cadet Centre in Derby

Talking about the major projects his team achieved last year, Martin Capewell Head of Estates at East Midlands RFCA, explained: “We have just completed two large projects namely the replacement of the Joint Cadet Centre at Hinckley and the redevelopment of 126 (City of Derby) Squadron’s base in Derby.”

“The redevelopment of 126 squadron’s base involved the total rebuild of the centre because previously they were based in three modular huts that were constructed in the 1970’s and were simply not fit for purpose anymore.

“In order to ensure the new structure in Derby was suitable for 130 cadets to use on a regular basis the building includes a large drill hall, radio room and modern classrooms with the facilities 126 need in order to grow and develop top level cadets.

“The joint cadet centre at Hinckley was an even more ambitious project because it aims to house 198 (Hinckley) Squadron RAF Air Cadets and the Hinckley detachment of the Army Cadet Force (ACF).

Martin Capewell_looks at plans on site“This centre has even more advanced training facilities including a specially designed firing range where cadets can practice their shooting without having to make a special excursion to an external range.”

As well as building or redeveloping sites the estates department is also responsible for a variety of other important things like leasing, repairs and health and safety.

Talking about the overall aims of his department, Martin continued: “We are funded to ensure buildings are safe for both the regions reservists and cadets to train in.

“In conjunction with the RAF Air Cadets and ACF we prioritise a list of replacements, once that’s been agreed by regional command we undertake a feasibility study and then employ contractors to process the design.”

The estates department are continuing to work on significant projects throughout the East Midlands and have big plans for the rest of 2018.

Hinckley Cadet Centre

Hinckley Cadet Centre

Martin concluded: “Although funds are limited we will continue to support the Cadet Forces and reservists who undertake training in our buildings.”

“The joint cadet centre at Hinckley was an even more ambitious project because it aims to house 198 (Hinckley) Squadron RAF Air Cadets and the Hinckley detachment of the Army Cadet Force (ACF)."