Sea Cadet Oliver on crest of wave

Sea Cadet Oliver Hobbs
Sea Cadet Oliver Hobbs

A teenager from Dunstable is one of only 13 Sea Cadets out of 14,000 across the UK to gain a special award.

Queensbury Academy student Oliver Hobbs, 14, is celebrating after achieving the challenging advanced seamanship qualification.

This huge recognition is part of a new national partnership between the Sea Cadets and Carnival Corporation & plc, parent company of P&O Cruises and Cunard.

The seamanship qualification will enable Cadets aged 10 - 18 to broaden their career options in the maritime industry. It tests Cadets on their knowledge of rope work, rigging, splicing and whipping, canvas work and decorative rope work.

Practical tests include working in a team to rig equipment such as sheer legs, gyn and derricks.

Oliver joined the Sea Cadets after encouragement from his friends when was 11. He said: “I spent five days away from home at HMS Caledonia in Rosyth, Scotland, learning advanced techniques on bends and hitches, derricks and decorative rope work.

“Achieving the advanced seamanship qualification will boost my career in the maritime industry and my university application.

“During my time at Sea Cadets I have climbed up the ranks from New Entry Cadet to Leading Cadet. I have achieved a basic level qualification in power boating and will be going for the intermediate level in June this year. I have already passed my intermediate qualification in sailing and advanced first aid.”

Sea Cadets communications officer Fran Toma said: “Across the country young people gain a seamanship qualification learning a range of skills essential to operating in the maritime environment. This qualification is the foundation of a career at sea and any water-based activity.

“Whether at sea or on land, Sea Cadets offers young people between 10 and 18 an environment where they can find new confidence and inspiration through nautical adventure. Across the UK 14,000 young people are challenging themselves and learning new skills based on the customs and traditions of the Royal Navy to give them the best possible head start in life.”