As we approach the Christmas and New Year break I wanted to thank everyone across the Wing for their continued support during what has been yet another busy year for South & East Midlands Wing.
2013 saw us take a lead role for the ATC in the designated National Armed Forces Day lead city - Nottingham, where the 1084 band lead the entire cadet forces contingent through the city whilst the Rifle Drill Display team from 126 performed in front of thousands on the Trent Embankment arena and the local units worked through a long and tiring day to set up, man and strip down our static displays that proved so very popular with the public. Many of those present, like the rest of the Wing then went off to commitments for AFD within their local area.
Another notable event saw cadets from the Wing line the route for the outgoing Chief of the Air Staff at his Dining out Night which had every RAF officer of Group Captain rank and above present. The fact that this is still talked about amongst RAF hierarchy clearly demonstrates the impact and profile this brings to the entire organisation not just the Wing. I cite the above as examples because of the major profile they gave the Wing in the public and service eyes but there are many more examples at both Squadron and Wing level that range across the broad spectrum of our activities E.G. First Aid, Nijmegen, Shooting competitions, Sports, service in the local and wider communities, IACE, 126 at the Birmingham Tattoo and an unprecedented third consecutive win for 1084 Sqn at the Corps Marching Band competition. None of these could have taken place without the drive, energy, commitment and enthusiasm of all involved, from planning to execution - skills and personal qualities that make South & East Midlands stand out amongst its peers and for that I thank you all.
2014 already promises to be another busy year. The 100th Anniversary of the start of the First World War and the 70th anniversary of D Day will inevitably mean commitment from the Cadet Forces, the trip to the Ascension Islands in March, another Wing Camp, Nijmegen and programme of Easter, summer and Autumn camps in the UK and Overseas typify what we already are aware of and planning. Hopefully flying will also get back into full swing during the year - there are some encouraging signs.
I wish you all a very merry and safe Christmas and prosperous New Year.
Wing Commander N C Dickinson OBE RAFVR(T)
South & East Midlands Wing ATC