A MARINE cadet was chosen by royal appointment for a special parade at Buckingham Palace.
It is the third time Blackburn Sea Cadet Thomas Kew, from Burnley, has stood guard for royalty, after the Jubilee celebrations and the Queen’s visit to Manchester.
He was among just 50 cadets from the north who took place in an anniversary celebration of the Royal Marines.
The Sir John Thursby student was selected to take part in the changing of the guard in only the fourth time in history that the palace has been guarded by 42 Command Royal Marines.
Under the gaze of Prince Philip and military officials, a total of 500 sea cadets took part in the parade, following the Royal Marines to mark their 350th anniversary. The event was described as a dream come true for the cadet, who wants to pursue a career in the Royal Marines.
Mum Cheryl Jackson said: “It was the best day ever. I was very emotional and very proud, but I wasn’t the only teary mum thank goodness. If he ever goes back it will never be as special as this was for him. It ticked every box for him.”
Sir John Thursby headteacher David Burton said “We are very proud that Thomas was selected for this prestigious occasion. I understand that he was the only cadet from Burnley chosen and having stood guard for Her Majesty The Queen twice before.
“He says he is sure he saw Her Majesty admiring the display from the window.
“Thomas’ work is a fantastic example of the voluntary social action that so many of our students contribute to our community. Well done, Thomas and all of the cadets you represent.”
The 14-year-old joined cadets who paraded with the Royal Marines Band of Portsmouth and Collingwood.
The parade was attended by the Secretary of State for Defence Philip Hammond, the Commandant General Royal Marines Major General Martin Smith MBE and Captain General Royal Marines, the Duke of Edinburgh.
The Duke presented the cadets with a new standard which will be made available to each force to parade.