Waterside girl chosen as Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet

Aimee Duncan, seated, with her brother Robbie, studying maps.
Aimee Duncan, seated, with her brother Robbie, studying maps.

A Waterside teenager was surprised and delighted to receive an early Christmas present last week, when she was appointed as the Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet for 2015.

Aimee Duncan, of Canterbury Park, daughter of Suzanne Duncan and the late Andrew Duncan, will take up her new position on March 21, assisting Dr Angela Garvey in her role as Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for the County Borough of the City of Londonderry.

“I joined the Cadets just over three years ago, joining the Drumahoe Detachment,” said Aimee.

“We do things like field craft, shooting, first aid and we do the Duke of Edinburgh Award with the Cadets as well, if we want to, but to do that you have to do a lot of military knowledge and learn about our regiments. All detachments have a certain regiment, so we have to learn about them, when they were formed and we have to learn their history, so there is a bit more to it,” said 15-year-old Aimee.

Cadets can also work their way up through ‘Star Levels’ and ranks if they want, and at present Aimee is working for her Three Star.

“Three Star is the hardest. It is a Namur Company, so they have a separate company at camp. It is the hardest one to pass and you have the most work to do because you are an older Cadet and are going on to become a senior, so they put more pressure on you to perform; you have to be better at drills and all the other activities. Normally it takes you a year to do it,” said Aimee, who admitted she was enjoying the challenge.

Without knowing about it, Aimee was nominated by her Detachment Commander, First Lt Suzanne McClay.

“She telephoned me on Thursday night to say I had got the role of Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet over all the other nominees,” said Aimee, continuing: “It is still kind of surreal.”

Among her duties as an assistant to the Lord Lieutenant, Aimee will assist Dr Garvey on Remembrance Sunday and other formal occasions. The appointment is a bit of a coup for the Drumahoe Detachment, as it is more normally a Cadet from Foyle Detachment who receives the honour.

Aimee’s proud mum, Suzanne, said she was delighted for her daughter.

“I’m very of her and I know her daddy would have been very, very proud of her. He knew she was being put forward for it because Suzanne said to us that she would be putting her forward, but asked us not to say anything to her in case she did not get it. She did not want Aimee to be disappointed. It is an extra-special Christmas present,” she said.