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St. BRENDAN'S COLLEGE CCF

The Combined Cadet Force (CCF) is a youth organisation in the United Kingdom, sponsored by the Ministry of Defence, which operates in schools, and normally includes Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force sections.

Cadet units in schools are supported financially by the Ministry of Defence, but are not part of the Armed Forces. The cadet forces follow some of the customs and traditions of their parent service, such as using the same rank structure. Cadets undertake a certain amount of military-themed training, but the organisations are separate. There is no commitment to military service of any kind, for the cadets or adults involved.

Former St. Brendan's cadet, Andrew Pennington, writes;

The CCF "paraded" on Monday late afternoon. I don't know which years it started or finished, but I joined in 1964. Up until then, all cadets had to do a year in the army element before being able to transfer to the RAF, but I was luckily able to go straight into the RAF when they changed the rules that year. Must have been a good influence, as when I left St Brendan's in 1968 I went to Cranwell and stayed in the RAF for another 36 years.

The St. Brendan's RAF element always went on an Easter camp to an RAF station for a week at the start of the Easter holidays, which involved visiting many different sections on the RAF unit, map-reading exercises, shooting on the range and flying in the aircraft based at the station. Accommodated in barrack blocks.

The Army element went for Summer Camp under canvas in a field above Porthtowan beach (between Portreath and St Agnes) on the north Cornwall coast. The RAF element could go as well if there were available places. Lots of field exercises, but also lots of swimming and time on the beach. Unfortunately, I have no pictures from that time.


1. RAF Element Easter Camp RAF Leuchars 1964.

Back row furthest right - Fg Off John Blake (history/English), on his right- Wg Cdr "Bung" Rose (chemistry)


2. Easter Camp RAF Thorney Island 1965.

Back Row (left to right) - Fg Off John Blake, S U/O Gilchrist, Cpl Steele, Cpl Melling, Cpl Bonathon, Sgt Bebbington, Cpl Craddy, Cpl Harris, Cpl Prynn, W/O Lonnen, Flt Lt "Spud" Murphy

Middle Row (l to r) - Cpl Haig, Cadet Gray, Cdt Probert, Cdt East, Cdt Riordan, Cdt Rogers, Cdt Kuchanny, Sgt Henshaw

Front Row (l to r) - Cdt Winterson, Cdt Mumford, Cdt Turner, Cdt Pennington


3. Easter Camp RAF Chivenor 1966.

Middle row centre - John Blake and Spud Murphy


4. Easter Camp RAF Lindholme 1967.

Front row centre - Wg Cdr Rose


5. Easter Camp RAF Oakington 1968.

Front row centre - Flt Lt "Jim" Burton (chemistry) and Spud Murphy