All hands on deck!

Dessie Blackadder


Dessie Blackadder

Ballymena Sea Cadets, who celebrate their 30th birthday this month, held an awards evening last week.

Almost 30 of their cadets received a total of 90 certificates of qualification, and promotion in rank earned within the last 12 months.

Commanding Officer of Ballymena Sea Cadets CPO John Taylor commented “We are very proud of the achievements made by our cadets.

“Not only do the qualifications earned help them in future, but the social skills taught will also help them become of more interest to prospective employers when the time comes.”

The Lord Lieutenant of Co Antrim Mrs Joan Christie was in attendance and congratulated the cadets on their hard work and dedication in their achievements.

Mrs Christie was thanked for her own dedication to the cadet forces in Co Antrim during her time in position, and was wished a very happy retirement for when she finishes in June.

The evening also saw representatives from some of the Army Cadet Forces join with Ballymena Sea Cadets, as they have been working together to collect ring pulls to be sent off to the Help For Heroes Charity where they will turn the ring pulls into prosthetic limbs.

Should anyone wish to help with this ring pulls can be left into Ballymena Sea Cadets on Tuesday evenings between 7pm and 9.30pm.

Chairperson Ruth Verner commented: “The hard work and dedication our cadets show is a credit to them, and we are very proud to have them in our unit.

“Many of the qualifications earned have meant the cadets had to go away for weekends to complete the courses, and when they are at school all week their weekends are precious, so to willingly give up the time to improve their skills is admirable.

“We are also pleased to have built relationships with the Army Cadet Forces and look forward to continuing to work together to help and improve our local communities. Ballymena Sea

“Cadets are committed to providing our cadets with as many opportunities as possible, so we are delighted to announce that from later this year we will be offering the Duke of Edinburgh awards for any cadet that wishes to participate in it.”

Ballymena Sea Cadets are actively recruiting for both instructional and management team members.

If anyone is interested in inspiring our young people, and earning themselves some qualifications in the process, please contact us via our Facebook page ‘Sea Cadets Ballymena’ or by emailing

No previous experience necessary as all training is provided.

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