Two Whitehaven Sea Cadets are to receive a Commendation from Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for Cumbria for their courage in helping bring a drug dealer to justice.
In 2019 Cadets James McAvoy and Kristofer Catwell, both aged 17, were travelling to a Sea Cadet course by train.
They had to change trains and were waiting on the platform when they were approached by a man who offered them drugs.
The cadets refused but the man became aggressive, grabbing and throwing one of their bags before he moved on.
“When we noticed the same person get on our train, we found a British Transport Police officer who stopped the train from leaving” said Kris. “We got on the train with the policeman and identified the man, who was then arrested.”
James added that he and Kris were able to phone their parents and the unit’s emergency contact, before being interviewed.
“It was a bit scary at the time but everything worked out OK. The police asked lots of questions, including if we would be willing to give evidence in court if necessary. We said that we would, but in the end that wasn’t necessary as the man pleaded guilty.”
Petty Officer (SCC) Stuart McCourt, the Whitehaven unit’s Commanding Officer praised the cadets’ actions and courage, saying that he, and the whole unit, were extremely proud of James and Kris.
“This is a prestigious award – they are the only Cumbrian Sea Cadets, and two of only four in the whole of the north west, to be selected for a Lord-Lieutenant’s Award this year.
“James and Kris really deserve the recognition for their bravery and ability to stay calm in difficult circumstances.”
All Lord-Lieutenant’s Awards events are currently postponed but it is hoped that the awards will be presented in autumn 2020, subject to COVID-19 restrictions being lifted.