A sports student from Sunderland College is honoured to have been selected to be one of Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant’s Cadets for 2013.
Jill Watson, 17, from Castletown in Sunderland, has been part of the Air Cadets 234 City of Durham Squadron for four and a half years is currently studying for a Level 3 BTEC in Sport Development, Coaching and Fitness.
The selection means Jill has been acknowledged to be one of the best cadets in her squadron, a fantastic achievement for the teenager.
Jill said: “To be chosen to represent the Air Cadets is a huge honour. Only the top cadets in each squadron are chosen so it’s very exciting for me.”
Each year the Lord-Lieutenant appoints specially selected cadets drawn from the Sea Cadets, Army Cadets, the Air Training Corps, the Combined Cadet Force and from the civil uniformed youth organisations such as the Scouts, Girl Guiding and the St John Ambulance to accompany him or her on official functions.
Jill added: “I’ll be expected to accompany the Lord-Lieutenant on all sorts of official engagements around Durham and Sunderland. It could be for things like Remembrance Sunday or for official royal visits.
“My family is very proud and I’ll actually be following in my brother’s footsteps, who a few years ago was also selected to represent the Air Cadets.
“During my time in the Air Cadets I’ve been able to do so much, like complete my Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award, but ultimately I want to become a P.E teacher.”
As part of her selection process Jill attended the Eden Armoury in Bishop Auckland, where she was presented with awards and certificates by the Lord-Lieutenant, currently former Vaux Brewery chairman Sir Paul Nicholson.
Danielle Oliver, Jill’s tutor at Sunderland College, said: “We’re all really proud of Jill. She gets involved in all the college’s enrichment activities and I’m sure she will show the same commitment to her new role as she does to her studies.”
When on duty, Lord-Lieutenant’s Cadets wear a distinctive sash with the badge of their appointment, to denote their role.
They assist the Lord-Lieutenant as required – often on parade for Royal visits – and act as ambassadors for their organisations and the young people of their counties.