How sea cadets homed in on Homs Road base

By Chris Were   |   Reporter   |
Friday 23rd September 2022 6:00 am
@ChrsWr
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The Gazette reported last week (September 14, page 2) on the opening of the new accommodation at the Ross-on-Wye and Monmouth Sea Cadets in Ross. The spread of photos was contributed by photographer Richard Morris.

The Gazette takes a look back on the 8 year journey to their current accommodation to Homs Road.

Herefordshire Council informed the unit in 2016 that they had a prospective buyer for their then accommodation at Station Approach and in September, sent a letter to Ross Town Council to express an interest in moving to Homs Road as a tenant. The asset transfer was completed in October 2017 and in November the lease was signed and the unit moved.

The project was rescued by Clive Richards in December 2017, who provided the £15,000 needed to refurbish the old public conveniences as Dwr Cymru refused to allow the cadets to connect the toilets in the new buildings. Cadets had to parade in Hereford until February 2018.

Commanding Officer Lt Cdr Williams stood down in 2018 and PO Bumpstead arrived as their First Lieutenant mentored by WO Fitzgerald, the District Warrant Officer as Officer in charge in March. July 5, 2018 marked the official opening of the unit on completion of the move.

WO Fitzgerald handed over to PO Bumpstead as officer in charge, April 11, 2019; they had completed their command courses together the previous November. After a six month probationary period, she became commanding officer in November that year, before the floods and the loss of the boating facility at Drummond’s Dub.

Christmas was marked by a roof leak culminating in a ceiling collapse; the unit started to sort this out in January and February the water came from the other direction in the February Floods.

Following the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, PO Bumpstead’s full range of talents were employed to keep the cadets engaged. The minibus damaged in the floods was written off and a replacement was procured. Flood damage to the toilets and kitchen was also being fixed. Various Covid grants including donations from the Ross Lions and Ross Town Council’s rent relief helped with the post covid preparations. Cadets returned to parading in September 2020. PO Bumpstead promoted to Sub Lieutenant in 2021; Clive Richards passed away on April 16.

The planning application for the new building was approved in November 2021, by April the next year, the classroom unit was delivered and opened on Thursday, September 8.

Those looking to join the organisation as a cadet, training staff member, or trustee can inquire in person on a Monday or Thursday evening at Homs Road. More information at sea-cadets.org.

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