Royal Naval Reservists have been spending a fortnight in Cyprus learning soldiering skills to defend a ship from attack. 

They’re members of the War Sea branch of the RNR and it’s their job to defend a ship from attack while it’s at sea and in port.

RNR on Exercise Close Encounter in Cyprus

The Navy has a unique and constant challenge... how do you teach sailors the skills they’ll need to serve at sea without always having a vessel to train it on? 

RNR practice force protection in Cyprus

With improvisation, you can turn an unused ammunition compound into a pretend ship.

For the reservists, there’s a number of tests to come, starting with the arrival of some local VIPs.  

Royal Naval Reservists practice force protection in Cyprus

With the official delegation on board, another less welcome visitor soon arrives alongside and tries to board the imaginary ship. 

The armed visitor eventually departs….but not for long.

Soon in the distance, a mob appears with reinforcements. 

Fake demonstrators take on Royal Naval Reservists on exercise in Cyprus

Although this is just an exercise this sort of force protection is exactly the role these RNR sailors – all members of the War Sea Branch – would do for real on board a ship at sea.  

Royal Naval Reservists on exercise in Cyprus

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