Students at South Devon University Technical College run with their gun

Gunning for glory! Newton Abbot students fired up for Royal Navy Field Gun Challenge

A driven team of students from South Devon University Technical College have been pushing all the boundaries to take part in the prestigious Royal Navy Junior Leaders’ Field Gun Challenge. The annual contest is led by the Royal Navy and sees teams of 16-24 year olds race against each other to assemble and manoeuvre a Field Gun, used in historical warfare.
The South Devon University Technical College (UTC) team undertook a week-long Royal Navy boot camp aboard HMS Bristol to prepare for the Field Gun Challenge, which took place on 7th July at HMS Collingwood in Fareham, Hampshire. The team from SDUTC finished Second in the Plate 2 final after competing against teams from the Prince’s Trust, local Colleges, Sea Cadet units and University Technical Colleges across the country.
This is the second year the science and engineering specialist school, South Devon UTC, has entered the hardcore challenge, which is very similar to the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity Gun Challenge, and is run along a course on a flat track with no obstacles.
The South Devon UTC Team were pleased with their performance and were congratulated by college principal Ian Crews, who said: “I’m so proud of our students. What a great team effort! It’s a privilege to run the UTC where these guys choose to be educated”.
Team members competing in this year’s challenge trained hard with a Royal Navy instructor ahead of the Field Gun Challenge to be at their best for the arduous Royal Naval tradition that focuses on teamwork, leadership and discipline. The training sessions took place at South Devon UTC’s state-of-the art facilities on Kingsteignton Road, Newton Abbot and included lots of demanding cardio challenges, High Intensity Interval Training and rigorous Field Gun drills.
Ian Crews added: “The opportunity to compete in such a unique challenge, which we enter because it is hugely rewarding and develops leadership and team working skills, is an experience our students will never forget”.
Launched in 2015, South Devon UTC is a specialist, non-selective secondary school providing pioneering education in science and engineering. The College has given many local students aged 14-18 the opportunity to gain the qualifications, skills and experience needed to progress successfully to university, higher level apprenticeship or employment. Students complete regular working placements within innovative companies like MB Aerospace, South West Water and the Environment Agency to gain experience that will help them progress in their chosen careers.
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