The Helensburgh Sea Cadets have been awarded a top prize after they passed an inspection “with flying colours”.

The youth group – which is part of the national Sea Cadets - was awarded a burgee flag after it underwent a yearly review by Commander (SCC) Graham Tait RNR, the senior staff officer for Scotland, who monitored safeguarding and safety practices.

Additionally, two cadets were honoured with prizes for their work in the unit, with Ben Atkinson given the title of Top Cadet of the Year and Kaiyn Stenhouse the Top Junior Cadet of the Year.

An adult volunteer with the group said: “The unit is inspected every year to ensure that it complies with the statutory legislation that governs all youth groups – safeguarding, health and safety and so on.

“Part of this inspection is a visit from a senior sea cadet officer to meet cadets, inspect the unit and meet the adult volunteers.

“This is usually a chance for the cadets to show off their unit and achievements to parents too.

“The Helensburgh Unit passed this year’s inspection with flying colours and has been given a top award for its efforts – known as a Burgee - although it has not yet been received.”

Helensburgh Advertiser: Two young sea cadetsTwo young sea cadets (Image: Helensburgh Sea Cadets)

The Helensburgh unit has a fleet of modern sailing craft, rowing boats, power boats, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boards as well as qualified staff who teach and supervise cadets.

Cadets can learn new outdoor skills and will have the chance to visit national residential training centres to learn boating skills and undertake weeklong voyages in the National Offshore Fleet.

The Sea Cadets are associated with the Royal Navy but are independent, focusing on delivering water-based activities to young people.

The organisation also provides opportunities to achieve the Duke of Edinburgh Award as well as Business, Technology and Education Council (BTEC) awards.

Helensburgh’ junior cadets who are aged 10 and 11 and local Royal Marine Cadets who are between 13 and 17 meet on Tuesdays between 7pm and 9.30pm at their hall on Rhu’s Cumberland Road.

Senior cadets aged 12 to 17 meet on Thursdays from 7pm until 9.30pm in the same venue.

Helensburgh Advertiser: Sea cadets during the prize giving ceremonySea cadets during the prize giving ceremony (Image: Helensburgh Sea Cadets)

The Helensburgh group currently has vacancies for up to 10 junior members, with boys and girls both welcome – however there is a waiting list to join the senior division.

The unit is always looking for adult volunteers to help out with the group.

All staff are unpaid volunteers and gain qualifications through national bodies such as the Royal Yachting Association or the Scottish Canoe Association.

Parents of children who would like to join or adults who would volunteer should call 01436 821894) email at