Cadets began at KEGS in 1904 and in 1948 became part of the Combined Cadet Force, as it is known today. This is an organization specifically for cadets in schools and KEGS is one of the few state schools to have a CCF. The CCF is sponsored by the Army. We currently have 160 cadets and we recruit from Year 8 at the end of each academic year.
Our aim is to seek out and develop leadership skills, team work, responsibility and organisation. Cadets are given the opportunity to practice this from the day they join. Senior cadets are given groups to look after and train. We believe that this is excellent education for life.
The CCF at KEGS is run by teachers at the school and supported by a training team from Colchester.
The training is organised into three areas:-
The main part of our training is Military. Cadets work towards the Army Proficiency Certificate Syllabus and then their Advanced APC. This includes Fieldcraft, Map and Compass, First Aid, Expedition Training, Drill, and Target Shooting. Adventurous training activities are mainly carried out at annual camp. These include raft building , rock climbing, and canoeing.
Camps give us the opportunity to practice the skills learnt at our school training sessions. Recruits’ camp takes place in the autumn and gives new cadets the opportunity to experience sleeping in bashers, cooking rations and navigating around the training area.
Navigation weekends of basic and advanced training take place in the Chilterns and on Dartmoor, primarily for Year 9 and 11 respectively.
Easter camp is for the more senior cadets and consists of a three day exercise. There are also opportunities for expedition practice and training. We aim to challenge the physical and mental abilities of our older cadets.
Annual Camp is based at a training barracks with cadets from other CCFs. This is for Year 9 and upwards. Activities are both military and adventurous in their nature. This is the highlight of our training calendar.
In recent years, we have also offered a number of adventurous trips to different parts of the world, to further test the cadets’ abilities. These include Morocco, Romania and Mongolia, and snowshoe trips to France and Romania.
The Corps of Drums is a major part of our CCF, parading two extra evenings each week. The Corps is often out in the local community performing at Royal British Legion or Army Benevolent Fund events. The Corps wear the Essex Regiment uniform. We are proud to be leading the Remembrance Day Parade in Chelmsford again this year.