25 participants, the most yet at Stradbroke, set out on their Qualifying Expedition on the morning of Friday 5th June. It goes without saying that it was raining as we left the school and the weather then added a little spice to the mix by throwing in thunder and lightning as the groups got under way. Thankfully the storm blew over quite quickly and by lunchtime the sun came out and we steamed in its warmth.

The Assessor was very happy with the groups and helpfully re-routed one group who had planned to walk a track which was not a public right of way. They did well to adjust to this diversion with confidence.

All the groups arrived at the campsite in their planned timescale and they efficiently set about pitching tents and making their evening meals. Another school was also booked in at the site for DofE, so there were about 60 young people sharing the area. As there are only 2 toilets on the site, this fact alone was a challenge.

I felt quite sorry for a couple who had arrived earlier and pitched their tent in an empty field obviously looking forward to a nice peaceful evening. However, they later congratulated us for being the quietist and best behaved DofE group that they had ever encountered. Well done Stradbroke DofE.

Day 2 dawned bright and sunny and the groups set off by 8.00am in good spirits having eaten their cooked breakfasts and cleared their sites. They were all reminded to plaster themselves with sunscreen as the forecast was sunny!!

Once again the groups finished in good time, were debriefed by the assessor and we headed off home. The participants all passed the journey part of the expedition, they now have to complete their project work and present it to the year 9s in assembly before they can be signed off.

I think all who took part can be proud of themselves for their expedition.

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