Palintest proudly supported the journey of our Production Manager Carl Maddison and the entire Durham Army Cadet Force team at the International Four Day Marches in Nijmegen. Carl was joined by over 36 other Cadets and adult volunteers from the Durham Army Cadet Force for this event. We caught up with Carl just as he got back from the trip to hear more about his experience.
The International Four Day Marches are the biggest road marching event in the world, involving Cadets and adult volunteers marching 25 miles or over on four consecutive days. In total over 47000 people take part in marching. The marches are in their 105th year in 2023 and have taken place continuously apart from the war years and the Covid Pandemic.
When asked to reflect on his experience, Carl shared “This was my second time doing the marches, last year we did it as a civilian group and walked in shorts and a t-shirt”. However, this year, Carl and the team walked as part of the British Military Contingent (BMC), meaning they had to wear military uniform and boots. To add to the challenge, adult males between the ages of 18–50 had to carry 10 kg on top of any water, food and first aid kit, meaning his bag weighed in at 13 kg. He admitted “I found this year to be much harder than last year, and that was mainly due to the boots I had. They gave me extremely bad blusters to the point where I had to quit on the final day.”
Despite the setback, Carl’s determination and positive outlook remained, and he shared “Even though I had the blisters and had to quit, I had an amazing time.” For him, the reason for doing these marches is camaraderie and teamwork. “I do this to be part of the team” he stated, “It is an opportunity that not everyone can say they get to take part in, but I was lucky enough to experience it”.
Participation in the Four Day Marches was made even better by the atmosphere which Carl and the team experienced throughout the event. Additionally, it allowed the whole Durham Army Cadet Force team the opportunity to interact with soldiers and cadets from other nations. Carl said, “The atmosphere is electric throughout and the locals all make you feel so welcome. The way we can interact with other nation’s armies is also great.”
Looking ahead, Carl shared “I would definitely do it again, but with new boots!”. We commend Carl and the entire Durham Army Cadet Force team for their determination and endurance taking part in this event. The collaboration, passion and ownership shown by the whole team exemplifies Palintest’s core values, which is why Palintest were so proud to sponsor the team for this challenge. Huge congratulations to all of the Durham Army Cadet Force Nijmegen team!
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