Aspiring recruits from across the region started their Army careers by successfully completing the consolidated Trained Soldier Course (Alpha) with the Army Training Unit North West (ATU NW) at Altcar Training Camp in Merseyside.
The 10-day course saw 20 recruits from various Army Reserve units, including 156 (NW) Tpt Regt RLC, 4 LANCS, 4 MERC, QOY, 207 (Manchester) Fd Hosp, 32 Sig Regt, Welsh Tpt Regt and 101 REME attend.
Training was delivered by the permanent team of Reservist instructors based at the Initial Training Wing, Altcar. The unit delivers both modular and consolidated Phase 1 training courses throughout the year.
Recruits were put through an intensive program which has been created to allow progressive training and facilitate the transition from civilian to soldier. The majority of the programme centres on Skill at Arms, including: live firing; physical training, culminating in a 3-mile march; and, two field exercises. Other key subjects include Drill, Army Values and Standards, Security and Military Law.
Bright skies and sunshine throughout the course helped to keep up moral as did a couple of social events which included an evening’s clay pigeon shooting and a curry night.
Overcoming their anxieties and worries, all of the recruits rose to the challenge and successfully completed the course. They are now looking forward to attending the Trained Soldier Course (Bravo), a 15-day course at either ATR Pirbright or Grantham.
Recruit Carole Done from 156 (NW) Tpt Regt RLC, who is a medical receptionist in her civilian job, said that it was fantastic to see the Army’s values and standards in practice – not just in lessons, but throughout the course. She said: “Joining the Reserves has been one of the best decisions of my life”.
Cpl James “Rocky” Croxford commented on how well the course dealt with the higher than usual temperatures and, working in the field environment, this was the first time many recruits had experienced living outdoors.
Maj Andy Derby, OC Initial Training Wing, was impressed by the level of personal fitness the course participants arrived with, and the speed at which they bonded. This contributed to the success of all 20 recruits passing out.
Lt Col Christopher Ledsham TD QOY, CO ATU NW, presided over the pass off parade, and presented the Best Student award to Craftsman Davies, 101 REME.
ATU NW also offers a variety of Phase 3 courses which are delivered throughout the year including; DIT, MATT 3 Instructor, RMQ, HAZMAT, ETL and Basic PTI. For further details and FoE contact: Capt Steve Jolley the Adjutant on 0151 929 3254.