THERE were cheers and whoops of joy as a new boat was unveiled at a sea cadet unit.
The new Rigid Inflatable safety boat, which cost £19,000, has been the result of a year’s worth of fundraising and grant applications – £5,000 from Fareham Borough Council’s community fund, £8,000 from Sport England and £4,000 from Connaught Trust.
It was finally unveiled at the Warsash Sea Cadet unit, TS Tormentor, at Warsash Maritime Academy, in Newtown Road, on Saturday by Mayor of Fareham, Cllr Mike Ford.
A bottle of Champagne was popped and the Rib was christened ‘Trojan’.
Cllr Ford said: ‘Warsash is the top sea cadet unit – that’s a fantastic achievement. This is fantastic boat – I wish everyone a lot of fun with it.’
Warsash Sea Cadets were named as the top unit in the country at the Southern Area Conference last December.
Lieutenant Tony Thurgood, Commanding Officer, spoke of his pride and excitement at getting the new boat.
He said: ‘Everyone is so excited about the extra training we can do now on the water.
‘Now we can get more of our cadets afloat, doing training on the water.’
He said the new boat, along with the unit’s existing equipment, would allow nearly all of the 60 cadets to be taken out on the water at any one time.
Cadet Katie Brawn, from Stubbington, joined the unit last April and said she was looking forward to going out in the new boat.
The 12-year-old said: ‘It is cool. Sea Cadets is really good fun.’
Also looking forward to going out on the boat were sisters Francesca Thurgood, 17, and Gina Thurgood, 13.
For Francesca, Saturday’s event was special as it was her last time in her full uniform as a cadet.
She said: ‘I really like it. I like powerboating and I hope to go out on this boat as an instructor, as I turn 18 on March 1.’
Cadets are aged 10 to 17. For more details on the Warsash Sea Cadet unit go to sea-cadets.org/warsash or call 07907 367296.
Fareham Borough Council’s community fund is available to support projects that benefit the community or environment. Any resident or organisation can apply for a one-off grant up to £5,000.
Call 01329 236100 or email email@example.com for more information.