NEW students at the Duke of York’s Royal Military School have been presented with their uniform berets at a special ceremony attended by family and friends.

The time-honoured tradition was also a first for Principal Alex Foreman, who joined the school at the beginning of the year and helped present berets to more than 120 new “Dukies”, mainly from year seven, who have completed a period of parade training after joining the school in September.

Lieutenant Colonel Steven Saunderson, the school’s Vice Principal and Commanding Officer, assisted.

The beret is an essential part of each student’s ceremonial uniform and is worn on parade and special occasions. Students can also wear the cap badge of a family member who has served in the Armed Forces on their dress blues. It is called their “heart badge” and is a poignant recognition of their family’s military heritage.

Alex explained: “The Beret Parade is a significant event for our students as it heralds their careers as Dukies with all the pride and importance that represents.

“Parents who attended also found it a heart-warming occasion, especially as it was the first time they will have seen students on parade embracing our military ethos that helps develop character and life skills.”

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