A bright and breezy day with fantastic views across the valley to Portland and Weymouth. The hill is teaming with hard working and breathless cadets of A Company ACF, raking and bucket filling.  I was not breathless, not tired, I felt as fit as a fiddle, after all I had only climbed for half a mile! 

I hadn’t been up there since Friday and there had been a lot more work done, Saturday must have been a busy one.The rest of the team were already there Steve Wallis (DCC Senior Archaeologist) and John Hayes (DCC Senior Ranger). I was standing in for our leader Geoff, who is sunning himself in Alderney!  Chris (head photographer) was amongst the lads and lasses shovelling away, easy to tell by the hat and gloves.  Steve was taking photos and looking at the view.  I felt a bit of a spare part so I hand picked a few stones that had dropped on to the grass and popped them into the bulk bag then took a couple of photos.

The work today was to get the one ton bags onto the nets for the helicopter crew to lift to the farm far below.  Not an easy task as it meant emptying one into another so that it sat square on the netting.  The mobile air operations team of Commando Helicopter Force RNAS Yeovilton then tied the netting up and around the bags ready for the off. 

The cadets took 11 minutes to do the first bag full then speeding up managed the last couple in 8 minutes! I helped fill a bucket and did a bit of raking, not easy on that slope. How they have stood for 4 hours without falling over I don’t know.

A smart guy called Sam, sat panting and watching with interest and hoping that it would soon be time for lunch.

A couple of holidaymakers came across and I had a chat and explained what we were doing (or rather what was being done!). Then to a guy who had walked across from Bowleaze leaving his wife on the beach.

Glancing across the hill I saw Michael (husband and webmaster). My lunch was on its way.  A delicious pasty which went down very well. No coffee though.

At two o’clock the helicopter arrived and circled around the site landing on the top of the hill.  Then we all watched with bated breath as each bag was hooked on to the rope and carried off into the air to be dropped into the field below on the farm.  Each bag pickup was executed so skilfully and it was watched by a couple of young boys, who were stood on the top of the hill. They did not expect to see something so exciting on their holiday a Sea King helicopter a hundred yards away hovering and lifting!

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