Spring is in the air, and as the weather gets warmer and the evening gets lighter – the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expedition season has also kicked off.  In the first week of April, Middlesex Wing joined forces with Herts & Bucks Wing, to complete a challenging joint expedition on Dartmoor.

The 17 cadets spent the first day receiving some refresher training to make sure their skills were sharp for the challenging environment they would be working in. Warrant Officer (ATC) Adrian Trent from 1159 (Edmonton) Squadron, the chief instructor during the training said: “It’s really important that we give cadets the chance to operate in wild country like this, the challenge of working here gives them such a great sense of achievement and it also helps to prepare their skills for when they move on to the Gold Award.”

Training on how to use a group shelter

For the next three days, the cadets took part in an expedition out on the Moor. During this time, they were totally self-sufficient – meaning they carried all of their equipment and food with them and each team spent a night wild country camping.

A successful weekend

Corporal Abigail Davis (17) from 936 (Hertford & Ware) Squadron said: “I loved every minute of the expedition, it was really hard but the skills that I learned and the people I met made it all worthwhile.”

The expedition element is one of the four key aspects of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. To complete their award, the cadets will also need to spend a number of months, learning a new skill, working on their physical fitness and also carrying out volunteering activities. This group are also well on their way to completing their silver level award – recognised nationally as a hugely prestigious achievement award, giving millions of 14 to 24-year-olds the opportunity to be the very best they can.