Students from The Royal Hospital School in Suffolk won one of the top trophies at a gruelling Royal Navy field gun competition against teams from military units and further education colleges.
Pupils from the leading independent day and boarding school returned home to Holbrook with the Endeavour Trophy for the fastest run by a non-military team at the Junior Leaders Field Gun competition.
The RHS team finished third overall in the competition held at Royal Navy base HMS Collingwood in Hampshire, but were the best team from a non-military establishment. A team from HMS Sultan won the event.
The Junior Leaders Competition is held over the same course as the main Field Gun competition and requires the teams to haul a 1,250lb (567kg) field gun from one end of the course to another, stopping to fire two volleys along the way. There are obstacles and requirements along the way and it is all against the clock.
The Field Gun competition started at the beginning of the last century as a drill to reflect the action taken by a Naval unit in transporting field guns across country to lift the siege of Ladysmith during the Boer War in South Africa in 1899.
The Royal Hospital School, one of the country’s leading independent day and boarding schools, has more than 300 years of Royal Navy heritage and students today demonstrate the values and service that comes from those links.
Former Royal Navy officer Nigel Griffiths, Head of Ceremonial at RHS and a former Field Gun Runner, formed the Royal Hospital School Field Gun Crew just over three years ago.
He said: "Every single person gave 100 per cent and I could not have asked for anything more. The RHS Field Gun Crew beat two other full time serving military crews, many colleges and universities and we were the youngest crew to enter the competition.
“The crew should be very proud of this fantastic achievement. They have proven that the school’s values of loyalty, commitment, courage, respect, service and integrity have underpinned this competition.”
Headmaster Simon Lockyer, who was among the supporters at the competition in Hampshire, said: “I am so proud of everyone in the RHS team that performed so well at this event - they showed discipline, teamwork and a hard work ethic that brought them the success they deserved.”