News

February 17th 2017

Spalding Air Cadets meet the Duchess of Cambridge

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Cadet Sergeant Jordan Bertolaso is pictured next to the Duchess of Cambridge

An air cadet from Spalding has spoken of spending his Valentine’s Day teaching the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, about aircrafts.

Her Royal Highness visited the Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire Wing’s half term training camp at RAF Wittering with cadets from 2430 (Holbeach) and 2160 (Spalding) Squadrons among those in attendance.

The Duchess is the Honorary Air Commodore of the Air Cadets and this is the third occasion that she has visited the Air Cadets since taking over from the Duke of Edinburgh who held the position for 63 years.

Her first port of call was to sit in the cockpit of a training aircraft where she was joined in the cockpit by Spalding’s Cadet Sergeant Jordan Bertolaso, who is a Qualified Aerospace Instructor. He explained to the Duchess about the controls and other aspects of the aircraft.

Jordan said; “Flying is my favourite air cadet activity and it was an honour to show the Duchess the layout of the aircraft.

“It is incredible having such a high profile Royal as our Patron, especially as she has strong links to the Royal Air Force with her husband being a former pilot.”

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Talking to cadets

Spalding cadets Erin Hope aged 14, Emily Empringham aged 15, and Joshua Wai aged 14 – also met the Duchess at the aircraft.

Afterwards the Duchess was invited to have a go at the air simulator and proved to be rather capable. She then took part in team building and initiative exercises under the direction of the Royal Air Force Motivational Outreach Team.

Her next port of call was to watch cadets being trained to qualify in the safe use of a rifle on a supervised rifle range and how to strip and clean the rifles they have used.

All the cadets and the volunteer staff who run the camp and the activities were joined by the Duchess in a group photograph before she departed.

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The Duchess visited the training camp at RAF Wittering

Another of the special guests on the day was the Air Cadets Commandant, Air Commodore Dawn McCafferty who said: “It was a delight to see the Duchess again and to witness her engaging with our young cadets and adult volunteers in such a relaxed manner.

“Her personal support of the RAF Air Cadets is very much appreciated and I am sure those lucky enough to meet her today will keep those memories for a lifetime.”

“It is incredible having such a high profile Royal as our Patron, especially as she has strong links to the Royal Air Force with her husband being a former pilot.”