On Friday the 15th of October 2021 the CCF of Lord Wandsworth College held a once in thirty years ceremony of the blessing of the banners. It was a very big event and the whole school attended to watch, with a massive chinook stood proud behind them.
I was quite excited for the blessing of the banners (not just because I got to miss period 2!) but because I had heard that it was a once in thirty years event so not many people would be able to experience it let alone be a part of it. It was almost like seeing something like a lunar eclipse but instead of watching it from earth, I was the moon and everyone was watching me.
As they were moving towards the parade, the cadets gathered by the sports field and were surprised to see a chinook land behind the parade ground. There was plenty of frantic videoing and amazed shouting. “It just circled closer and closer until we realised that it was actually landing!” said one cadet. As the chinook's blades spun rapidly in the air all the cadets around me stood in awe. When we were lining up to start marching, I could feel the nervous excitement around me. As we heard the start of the drums and the bagpipes we started to march down to the war memorial area.
As we marched down from Sutton Hall to the field in front of the war memorial the realisation of how big an occasion this was really hit me like a brick wall. I could see the whole school waiting expectantly as I got nearer the field and I could pick out the people I knew: my sister, my mates, my teachers and my housemaster. The whole school had gathered, and it was immense. As we marched into ranks, I could see the banners in front of me; they were spectacular.
In practice we’d had a couple of struggles with the halt as we hit the parade square and so I was slightly sceptical on how much of a fool I’d look when I wouldn’t hear the call ‘HALT!’ But like the rest of the ceremony, it was smooth and without a mistake.