It was an honourable day for the Portland Sea Cadets as they were invited to a ship's dedication service.

The cadets were invited by the Commodore of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Commodore Duncan Lamb, to attend the Service of Dedication for the RFA’s newest ship, RFA Tiderace.

Recognising the Sea Cadet’s abilities, the ship’s commanding officer, captain Sam Shattock, extended the invitation further to give the youngsters a far greater involvement than expected by being involved with hosting the 200 guests and dignitaries, and playing an active part in demonstrating the ship’s capabilities.

The cadets took part in the dedication ceremony, which included the blessing of the ship, and then joined with the ship’s company’s fire-fighting and first aid teams to give practical demonstrations as the guests toured the key areas of the vessel.

The ship is the second of four new Tide Class replenishment tankers, ordered as part of the Royal Navy’s Maritime Afloat Reach and Sustainability programme to provide a refuel capability for the Queen Elizabeth class of aircraft carriers.

Portland Sea Cadets’ commanding officer, Lt Rachel Harris, said: “The Cadets were delighted and very proud to be a part of such a prestigious event in the Ship’s history, marking RFA Tiderace’s entry in to operational service.

"We were extremely well looked after by the ship’s company throughout our time onboard, giving the cadets a real insight to the ship, it’s purpose and capabilities.

"They particularly enjoyed putting their skills to good use, giving demonstrations to all the guests in fire-fighting responses and first aid life-saving reactions. It was certainly a day that they’ll remember for a very long time.”

Whether at sea or on land Sea Cadets offers young people between 10 and 18 an environment where they can find confidence and inspiration through nautical adventure.

Across the UK 14,000 cadets, supported by 9,000 trained volunteers are challenging themselves and learning new skills based on the customs and traditions of the Royal Navy.

For more information about Portland Sea Cadets, visit