Award-winning air cadet is bound for South Africa

Air cadet Stephen Isherwood receives his award at the House of Lords from ILM's Russ Haines

Air cadet Stephen Isherwood receives his award at the House of Lords from ILM's Russ Haines

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An air cadet from the Isle of Man is preparing for a potentially life-changing experience having won a national award.

Douglas-based Stephen Isherwood of 440 (1st Manx) Squadron Air Training Corps was presented last week with the outstanding acheivement award at the prestigious CVQO Duke of Westminster Awards.

The awards recognise the best and most deserving cadets from around the UK and British Isles based on their community, voluntary and personal achievements.

Stephen was selected as the winner from a group of nine national finalists, all of whom will take part in a two-week educational expedition to South Africa in July where they will work with local communities and learn about the country’s history.

Stephen competed with 24 others to be chosen as one of the final nine at a challenging four-day selection event at an outdoor pursuits centre in Somerset last April.

This involved physical team-building tasks, group debates, strategy tests and interviews.

The candidates also worked to achieve the Institute of Leadership and Management’s (ILM)Level 3 qualification.

Stephen was crowned the winner at a celebratory lunch at the House of Lords last week, attended by the finalists’ friends, families, military personnel and cadet force volunteers.

The CVQO Duke of Westminster Award has been running since 2004 and seeks to reward those cadets who go beyond the cadet experience, becoming valuable members of their communities and showing a willingness selflessly to help others.

Guy Horridge, CVQO chief executive said: ‘Stephen worked extremely hard on his submission in order to achieve an ILM Level 3 in Leadership and Management following the selection event and is a worthy winner of the award.

‘He should be justifiably proud of his achievements.’

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