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Reserve Forces & Cadets Association
Northern Ireland



11 August 2021

It’s a double celebration this month at Breda & Hydebank Army Cadet Force Detachment where two teenage members have been appointed to serve as Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant’s Cadets.

Cadet Sergeant Rebecca Maxwell will serve as Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant’s Cadet for the County Borough of Belfast, while colleague Cadet Sergeant Thomas Potter will become Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for County Down.

The year-long posts are largely ceremonial and the pair will attend their respective Lord Lieutenants on major civic occasions.  In recognition of the award the Cadets will be entitled to wear a special insignia on their uniform.

Rebecca Maxwell, an enthusiastic and accomplished member of the Breda Detachment looks forward to supporting Mrs Fionnuala Jay-O'Boyle, CBE, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for Belfast.  In the Citation which accompanies her appointment, Rebecca is praised for being ‘a supportive and inspiring Cadet, always encouraging her fellow Cadets to reach their potential. She is first to volunteer for activities and works hard to promote her detachment, by giving presentations at local community groups, taking part in events such as the Killyleagh Chocolate Festival and helping to fundraise with fellow Cadets for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice.’ 

Rebecca is up to any and every challenge and has successfully taken part in numerous Military Skills, Shooting and First Aid competitions. She recently found some of her Cadet skills put to test in real life when she was able swiftly and calmly to come to the aid of a member of the public requiring first aid after a bad fall. Her timely and appropriate assistance earned her high praise from, the professionals in the emergency services. 

The lively teen spent her summer volunteering for local business Jump, Jingle & Jive, helping people to get active, and she was able to help both young and older people from the area, learn to foster healthier lifestyles. 

Cadet Sergeant Thomas Potter who has been appointed to attend Mr David Lindsay CVO, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for County Down, is recognised as an outstanding Cadet who, according to his award Citation, ‘has always displayed a high level of commitment and enthusiasm for everything that the ACF has to offer’.

Thomas consistently demonstrates a strong desire to learn and develop new skills and abilities, setting an excellent example to his peers. As a result, he has represented cadets at all levels, up to and including national.  He embodies both leadership skills and a selflessness which, together, make him a great trainer and role model for younger Cadets. 

His engagement with cadets at all levels is mirrored by his engagement with the wider community. He has been deeply involved in charitable events and in helping out among the most vulnerable during the COVID crisis. Also, during that time, he played a significant role in promoting the ACF virtually, in an imaginative online video for VE day, and by delivering practical community aid and assistance.  Undaunted by COVID restrictions he supported charity and fund raising with virtual sporting challenges. The Citation concludes, ‘His performance throughout has been remarkable and he truly represents the Values and Standards which underpin the Army Cadet Force.’

While the ceremony to mark the conferral of the prestigious awards was socially-distanced, the pair are already looking forward to a busy year ahead as restrictions lift.

Thomas is pictured showing off the certificate which marks his achievement alongside his mum Emma-Louise and Mr David Lindsay, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for County Down

Rebecca is pictured with her proud mum, Melissa, and Mrs Fionnuala Jay-O'Boyle, CBE, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for the County Borough of Belfast.