First Army Reservists In Scotland To Pass Out After Coronavirus Disruption

The recruits are finishing off their basic training at Barry Buddon Training Camp and are expected to pass out in the coming days.

A group of Army reserve recruits are to become the first to complete basic training in Scotland this year. 

The recruits are set to take part in their passing out parade in the next few days after the coronavirus crisis caused widespread disruption to the Army's training schedule. 

The recruits have been taking part in an intensive course at Barry Buddon Training Camp, near Dundee, designed to fast-track their skills.

"They’ve performed really well, trying to stick to the whole programme, the way it’s done," said Army Training Unit Instructor, Sergeant Major Lee Penrice.

"They’ll go to Catterick, et cetera, for infantry and others will go to the other arms places to continue their trade training."

The course has seen the recruits learn a range of skills from marksmanship and field skills to section attack drills.

For many taking part in the training, it is a far cry from their civilian jobs.

Private Katie Handyside, from 71 Royal Engineers, usually works in a pub kitchen.

She said it is very different from training to be an Army reserve.

"It’s [reserve training] like more enjoyable, like you get a lot out of this, you get to run around, you get to shoot, you get to do fieldcraft, it’s really good."

Instructors oversee reservists on the fast track course as they learn key skills.

The training has been overseen by a group of experienced reservists.

Fusilier Anthony Fantozzi, from Z Company, 5th Fusiliers, told Forces News: "We’ve been picking up the knowledge of our instructors, making sure that we know as much as we can, so we can take it back to our units.

"But from week one, everybody in our section, everybody in our platoon, has developed rapidly over the three weeks because the course is so condensed."

After passing out in the coming days, the recruits will return to their reserve units as fully-trained soldiers.

The Army only resumed basic training in May, following a pause over the pandemic.