Cadets celebrate a good 12 months

2015 Sabena Award winners with Officer Commanding Flt Lt Dan Laidler. Picture by Mark Robson/Shockwave Photography.
2015 Sabena Award winners with Officer Commanding Flt Lt Dan Laidler. Picture by Mark Robson/Shockwave Photography.

Air cadets are flying high after celebrating a successful 12 months.

Teenagers from 346 (Tynemouth) Squadron ATC were presented with a host of trophies and certificates, including Cadet of the Year, at the group’s annual Sabena prize giving day.

The cadets were joined at the ceremony at Christ’s Church C of E Primary School in North Shields by parents, squadron staff and Tynemouth MP Alan Campbell, who handed out the honours.

The prestigious Sabena Cadet of the Year was won by Flt Sgt Liam McConville, 17.

He said: “I feel incredibly lucky and proud. I really love being an air cadet and the opportunities it has given me.

“Over the past four years I have had the chance to try out so many things from flying and gliding to shooting, parachuting and scuba diving, and have learned so much like first aid and leadership skills.

“This award shows how far I have come.”

Officer Commanding, Flt Lt Dan Laidler, said: “The Sabena Awards are the culmination of a very hard year of work by an outstanding group of young people.

“Choosing who should win is always a very difficult decision, but in the end it was the hard work, commitment, team spirit and willingness to go that extra mile that saw FS McConville walk off with this esteemed trophy.

“He is an outstanding role model and he can be justifiably proud.”

Other trophies presented at the ceremony were:

Best First Class Cadet: Cadet Jamie Sorby, 14

Best Leading Cadet: Cpl Ethan Lloyd, 16

Best Senior Cadet: Sgt Calum Hartwell, 16

Wing Commander Knowles Shield for Master Air Cadet Exam: Cpl John David Adams, 16

Best Bandsman: Cadet Leona Mason, 14

Best Marksman: Cpl Kai Korzonek, 16

Best Sportsperson: Cadet Julia Rogers, 14

Squadron Leader Kennedy MBE Cup for Best Non-commissioned Officer: Cpl Darryl Hall, 17

Best Dedication to Community Service: Cadet Abbey Stobbs, 15

Flt Lt Laidler said: “This has been a phenomenal year of successes. All this year’s Sabena winners and promotions can feel justifiably pleased of their achievements, as can everyone from the squadron both individually and collectively.

“I would like to thank all the cadets for their continued enthusiasm and commitment to the squadron in moving it forward to achieving ever greater things.”

Any potential cadets interested in joining 346 (Tynemouth) Squadron or wanting more information should email or go to