Portadown’s Rebecca Pinkerton has been honoured at a Hillsborough Castle ceremony where she was appointed to the role of Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet for County Armagh.
Rebecca, an enthusiastic and high-flying Cadet Corporal with The Royal School Armagh Combined Cadet Force, will be one of 11 Lord Lieutenants’ Cadets taking on a year-long ceremonial role.
She can expect a busy year ahead, attending The Earl of Caledon, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for County Armagh, on major civic occasions.
In recognition of the award, Rebecca will wear a special insignia on her uniform throughout her year in office.
The lively 16-year-old has already chalked up an illustrious record of achievement as a cadet, in school and beyond.
Rebecca joined the Army Section of the Combined Cadet Force in September 2015 and has made a significant contribution since then, earning the Army Proficiency Certificate (Advanced) and St John Ambulance Youth First Aid certificate.
She is currently working towards the completion of the National Navigation Bronze Award and also the BTEC qualification in Teamwork and Personal Development in the Community.
The citation which accompanies her award refers to the pride Rebecca has taken in being part of Armagh’s annual Remembrance Day commemorations and highlights her role as a junior Cadet Instructor.
Rebecca has represented her school contingent in a number of different competitions, most notably as part of the winning team, two years running, in the Local Heroes competition.
The insight that participation in the competition gave her into the atrocities of WWI prompted Rebecca to enter the international Never Such Innocence competition with her poem, The Poppy.
The work was placed third out of more than 7,000 entries from across the Commonwealth and Rebecca was the only UK Cadet to win a prize.
The Vice-Chief of Defence Staff presented Rebecca with her certificate in The Guards’ Chapel, Wellington Barracks, London, and she was subsequently invited to attend a special reception at Buckingham Palace to read her poem.
Rebecca was also selected to read a prayer in front on Her Majesty The Queen in Westminster Abbey during the National Armistice Service on Remembrance Sunday.
Her energies have also been channeled into other areas of life at The Royal School and she has represented the school at rugby, hockey, swimming, orienteering and rowing.
She is a proficient swimmer, having been a member of Banbridge Swimming Club and RSA Swim Team since the age of eight; representing her school and club at regional, national and international level.
From the age of 12 Rebecca has rowed for Portadown Rowing Club and RSA-Rowing Team and has represented her school and local club at regional, national and international level.
Praising the tireless teen, the Award Citation states: “Rebecca has clearly demonstrated on numerous occasions that she is at ease in all types of company, relating well to both her peers and Contingent staff.
“Rebecca has been an outstanding example of an ambassador for the Contingent, school and the wider cadet movement.
“Her vast range of achievements and her experiences, allied with her bright lively disposition and outgoing manner, make Rebecca a very well respected and popular cadet … very well suited and capable of discharging with distinction, the role of Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet.”