This is the only comprehensive study of the Cadet Movement. It is a military and social history of the Junior Training Corps (the forerunner of the Combined Cadet Force), the Sea Cadet Corps, the Army Cadet Force and the Air Training Corps. Today's Army and Air Cadet Organisations were founded in response to the threat of war. Indeed, the history of the Cadet Movement from the threat of invasion in 1860 to the end of the Second World War is inextricably bound up with war. The army cadets were officially recognised when they became part of the Volunteers Movement - forerunner of the T.A. By 1910, the Navy League had amalgamated the sea cadet units to form a national organisation. Many boys joined the cadets as a response to the Boer War, and army cadets went to war in South Africa. In 1914 cadet training was geared to preparing boys for full-time military training in the Services and for combat. In the 1930s Britain once again prepared for war and thousands of youths responded to the country's needs by joining the cadets. The Second World War saw the inauguration of the Air Cadets. Surprisingly, many cadets units participated in the direct defence of the country.
The Cadet Movement had two aims: the production of responsible citizens and the preparation of cadets for the defence of the country. This book demonstrates that the Cadet Movement was much more than just another uniformed youth organisation. The cadets, their volunteer officers and instructors responded to the needs of the country even - especially -in times of war.