SIXTEEN-year-old army cadet Matthew Hughes from Jameston has been selected to be one of 72 cadets from Wales going on a three-week expedition to South Africa in July. Lance Corporal Matthew is the only cadet selected from Tenby Detachment to make the trip and one of only six from Pembrokeshire.

The expedition will include a 50 kilometre trek on a Zulu trail and a visit to the memorial sites of the battles of Rorke’s Drift and Isandlwana. They will experience white water rafting, visit schools and interact with local communities. Matthew will also take part in a giraffe field study, observing these endangered animals and collecting data.

The trip is designed to develop leadership skills, build character and self confidence, encourage compassion for our fellow creatures and become a respectful member of the community.

To help fund this wonderful expedition, each cadet was tasked with raising £1,400 toward the cost. Matthew personally wrote to local charitable organisations to ask if they were willing to sponsor him, and one local group that responded was Tenby Freemasons.

Tenby Lodge Charity Steward Steve Thurgood said:“Tenby Lodge has often assisted local youth in their endeavours, and our members agreed that the aims of this trip are very worthy of our support.”

At the Detachment HQ in Tenby, Lance Corporal Matthew gave an eloquent slideshow presentation of the expedition to his sponsors, having been introduced by 2nd Lieutenant Gideon Carpenter who also gave some background to the Army Cadets. Matthew said how fortunate he was to have been selected, and how grateful he is to his sponsors for their financial support.

Current Master of Tenby Lodge David Marshall presented Matthew with a cheque for £300 and said: “Matthew is a great lad and a credit to the Cadets so we are only too pleased to help him make this expedition which he will remember forever.”

For information on the Army Cadets and how to join go to

For information on Tenby Freemasons send an e-mail to the Lodge Secretary at [email protected]