A SOUTH Derbyshire youngster has enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity sailing trip.
Charlie Hughes, who is a cadet warrant officer for the 1211 (Swadlincote) Air Cadet Squadron, took to the sea in Scotland as part of a scheme organised through Ocean Youth Trust Scotland.
The 19-year-old spent time on a fully rigged ship and also learned a host of new skills as part of the trip.
She said: “I had the trip of a lifetime and found a real love for sailing encouraging me to take it further and hopefully help to staff a course next year.”
The Ocean Youth Trust Scotland sailing trips see a group of 12 youngsters, aged between 18 and 25, take command of the Alba explorer ship under the supervision of full time qualified staff.
During the sailing trip, Miss Hughes took part in several activities while both living and working on the ship.
These included working within a small team of other air cadets and full time qualified instructors to sail the ship to each destination throughout their journey.
She also had the opportunity to take charge of the boat and sail to the furthest away island, St Kilda, in the Outer Hebrides, .
A spokesman for the Swadlincote-based squadron told the Mail that this was the perfect example of the activities on offer for budding air cadets.
He said: “Spending time on a fully rigged ship such as this one, provides an ideal opportunity for air cadets, like Miss Hughes, to develop their team work and leadership skills in an environment which takes them outside of their comfort zone.
“Being given an opportunity too develop these skills alongside self confidence, interpersonal and communication skills helps to equip youngsters for their futures in their selected future employment, whether it would be a career in the military or within a civilian role.”
Cadets at the 1211 squadron enjoy a host of activities such as this including flying and shooting.
More information on the cadets is available by calling 0128) 212629 or visiting www.1211sqn.org.uk/