History of the CCF at Monmouth School for Boys
A Brief History
“Labor omnia vincit – the Cadet Corps of the School is at last in full swing. It promises to be exceedingly smart and efficient, and from being rough and undisciplined it has learnt to serve and obey”.
So started the report in the Monmothian in April 1906, two years after the “Cadet Corps” as it was then known was formed. What’s new we ask? In this the Centenary year we mark the fact that countless cadets have passed through the ranks of Monmouth School for Boys CCF and many have gone on to careers in the Armed Forces.
Two World Wars have been fought and Old Boys of the school have been awarded 32 Military Crosses, 11 Distinguished Service Orders, 8 Flying medals (DFC, AFC and DFM) and one Victoria Cross. In 1921 Captain Angus Buchanan VC, once Head Boy at school stood at the opening ceremony for the War memorial. One hundred and forty three Old Monmothians fell in battle in the 20thCentury.
In 1904 a Cadet Corps at Monmouth Grammar School was added to the 4thVolunteer Battalion of the South Wales Borderers. In 1908 the 4thVB became the 3rdBattalion of The Monmouthshire Regiment, and in 1911 the School Cadet Corps was officially affiliated to The Monmouthshire Regiment. The early photographs show the Cadet Corps wearing the Monmouthshire Regiment cap badge. The Army section of the CCF are today the only unit still to wear the Welsh Dragon. Neither will the uniform of the day go unnoticed, reminiscent of the Boer War. Chindit style hats and long rifles.
After the First World War the uniform changed to the familiar peaked caps and khaki serge. In 1925 the Cadet Corps became the Officers’ Training Corps and in 1942 first mention is made of an Air Training Corps. After the Second World War, in common with other school cadet contingents we became a Combined Cadet Force of Army and RAF.