PUPILS at a school are celebrating after receiving prestigious honours.

Hamish McAllister, Teddy Hamilton and Kieran Bleasby from Barnard Castle School, have all achieved ‘Master Cadet’ status after impressing during a rigorous selection process for the ‘Master Cadet Awards’.

The three pupils are part of Barnard Castle School’s Combined Cadet Force (CCF) and their success marks the first time in school history that any of its cadets have received such respected accolades.

The master cadet course, which is considered the pinnacle of a cadet’s time in the CCF, is commissioned by Cadet Training Centre (CTC) Frimley Park – the national centre of excellence for cadet forces training.

The awarding body approved all of the School’s nominations for Hamish, Teddy and Kieran, who were then invited to attend the final interview stage.

All three interviewed exceptionally well and were deservedly awarded their honours.

Hamish, who is the Regimental sergeant major (RSM) of Barnard Castle School’s CCF and aspires to become an Army Officer, said: “It is a great honour to be recognised as a Master Cadet. The CCF experience has taught me many skills over the years, complementing my studies very well, and I hope that it will stand me in good stead as I look to pursue a career in the military.”

Teddy, who is the School CCF’s Company sergeant major and hopes to become a member of the Royal Marines, said: “I am passionate about a career in the armed forces after I complete my studies. The experience and knowledge that I have gained from my CCF commitments and, most recently, throughout the Master Cadet selection process, are invaluable and will be crucial in achieving this ambition.”

Kieran, colour sergeant of the contingent, who hopes to secure an engineering apprenticeship before following a career in the military, said: “Being recognised as a Master Cadet is one of my greatest, personal achievements. I have learnt a lot during my time at School so far, especially during my years of service within the CCF, which I can apply to my future studies and career opportunities, hopefully within the military.”

Major Caroline Connor, who leads Barnard Castle School’s CCF, said: “I am delighted for Hamish, Teddy and Kieran, who always show a great dedication to training and the overall CCF experience. These Master Cadet accreditations are fully deserved, especially with how well the boys have performed and led throughout these testing times."

“We are proud to be one of the North’s largest CCF contingents, with many first-class, professional cadets who are a credit to our School, and hopefully our CCF will celebrate further awards success in the future.”