Home stretch for new RBR recruits


The island’s newest soldiers will tomorrow finish their basic training and celebrate with a passing out parade.

The 25 troops in the first of two Recruit Camp intakes this year yesterday learnt about the RBR’s internal security role and the requirement to act within the law if called out for public order duties.

The recruits earlier spent their first night under canvas at Hog Bay in Southampton as part of their fieldcraft training.

Private Canaan Tucker, 20, of Warwick, said: “I enjoyed it a lot — but I didn’t enjoy walking up the hills because I hurt my knee. But I managed.

He added he had enjoyed lessons on the RBR’s SA-80 rifles and the new-look assault course.

Private Tucker said: “My favourite part was the assault course. That was the highlight for me. I did pretty good.”

He added that he signed up with the Regiment to help increase his chances in the job market and learn new skills.

Private Tucker said: “I’ve been applying for a lot of jobs and I wanted to do something of substance and get a little more discipline.

“I joined because I knew it could bring other opportunities outside of the Regiment.”

Private Andrea Burrows — at 5ft 1in, the intake’s shortest soldier — proved a hit on the firing range and her marksmanship earned praise from Air Vice-Marshal Gavin Parker, the Defence Attaché at the British Embassy in Washington, who visited the troops on Wednesday.

Private Burrows, a cashier at Master’s hardware store in Hamilton, said: “I was quite a good shot. I think I must just have a natural talent for it. I enjoyed the shooting.”

The Pembroke 21-year-old added: “I enjoy the lessons, learning something new. But the most important thing is rifle drills. It’s all about safety.”

Private Christopher Montgomery, 21, said he enjoyed a night outdoors on the fieldcraft exercise, Operation First Encounter.

Private Montgomery, from Hamilton Parish, added: “It was interesting getting woken up at 4.30am — that was very different.

“It was pretty crisp outside, but I liked it. I’ve very much enjoyed the entire experience.

“I had heard about the Regiment’s humanitarian efforts and that they wanted volunteers. I wanted the discipline as well.”

Lieutenant Ryan Eve, the platoon commander for the intake, who ran the rules of engagement class, said the new soldiers had been keen and eager to learn.

He added: “We ensure our soldiers always act within the law and use the minimum force required. In the event of civil disturbance, they will know how to react in an appropriate way.”

Lieutenant Eve, an insurance underwriter from Southampton, added: “They have done well and I’m confident they will be ready for their passing out parade.”

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Published Feb 28, 2019 at 8:08 pm (Updated Feb 28, 2019 at 8:08 pm)

Home stretch for new RBR recruits

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