Festive fayre proves the perfect gift for Denmead cadets

Lt Bianca Davitt leads the band'''Picture Ian Hargreaves  (161354-1)
Lt Bianca Davitt leads the band'''Picture Ian Hargreaves (161354-1)
Captain Danny Wright with Year 8 pupils (left to right) Isaac Bello (12), Zak Sargant (12) and kneeling Olivia East (13) with Lbdr. Andy Bowman Picture by  Malcolm Wells (180524-0054)

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CHRISTMAS came early for these cadets after their festive fayre raised hundreds of pounds for their unit.

More than a dozen youngsters from TS Alacrity junior cadet corps manned the stalls at their fete in All Saint’s Church Hall, Denmead

Cadets used their musical talent to entice customers in from the streets, playing a range of carols and rousing tunes to help drum up trade.

The event, held on Saturday, helped raised much-needed cash to pay for the unit’s summer activities and camps.

Children sold everything from sweets and cards to toys and stocking fillers.

Lieutenant Bianca Davett was one of those behind the day. She said: ‘This is very important for us. We rely on the generosity of the local community to keep the unit open and running.

‘Our cadets come from a variety of cultural and social backgrounds – we have children who have come from very poor backgrounds.

‘The whole aim of our unit is to being everyone together in a home away from home. Days like today really help us in achieving this.’

The cadets have run the event every year since they began, in 1992, raising between £400 and £800.

Cadet Ellie Webster, 12, said: ‘Today’s been really fun. It’s been very busy too.’

Disabled Lieutenant Andy Denholm, 43, has been with the unit eight years and says it is a key part of his life.

The dad-of-three was left wheelchair-bound after being diagnosed with functional neurological disorder (FND).

‘I lost the ability to do all the daily things so the cadets is so important to me,’ he said.

The cadets run every Monday, from 7-9pm, at Denmead War Memorial Hall, in Hambledon Road. For more details, call 07773 271807.