Prince Harry

Was This The Day Prince Harry Decided On An Army Career?

Prince Harry served in the Army for ten years, undertaking two tours of Afghanistan during his military career.

In July 1993, the eight-year-old Prince visited the barracks of the Light Dragoons in Germany and took a ride in a Scimitar armoured fighting vehicle.

He was given a specially-made uniform for the one-day visit to Haig barracks in Bergen-Hohne, and the visit perhaps had an influence on the young royal as less than 12 years later he entered the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) to begin his Officer Cadet training.

Prince Harry during Light Dragoons visit
The then-eight year-old Prince running out to the tank during his 1993 visit in Germany (Picture: PA).

Prince Harry's military career

The now-Duke of Sussex served in the Army for ten years, rising to the rank of captain and undertaking two tours of Afghanistan.

Passing his Regular Commissions Board (RCB), the qualification necessary to train at Sandhurst, in September 2004, Prince Harry entered RMAS in May 2005 to begin 44 weeks of Officer Cadet training.

In January 2006, it was announced that Prince Harry would join the Blues and Royals, part of the Household Cavalry, and he was commissioned as an officer in the Army in April 2006.

Prince Harry in a light tank during Light Dragoons visit
Prince Harry was given a specially-made uniform and camouflage paint to wear for the tank ride (Picture: PA).

Prince Harry joined the regiment in May 2006, before beginning the Troop Leaders’ Course at the Armour Centre at Bovington in Dorset, learning driving, maintenance and gunnery skills.

After completing the course in October of that year, Prince Harry rejoined his regiment in Windsor and was in charge of a troop of 11 personnel and four reconnaissance vehicles.

In 2007, the prince was deployed to Afghanistan for ten weeks, working as a forward air controller, coordinating air strikes on Taliban positions.

However, his tour ended early following reports in international media of his whereabouts.

On 28 February 2008 the Ministry of Defence confirmed that Prince Harry had been serving with the British Army in Helmand, Afghanistan for more than two months.

Less than two months later, Prince Harry was promoted to the rank of lieutenant.

The Duke of Sussex then retrained as an Apache pilot in the Army Air Corps and returned to Afghanistan in 2012 as a helicopter co-pilot and gunner.

Prince Harry Flying Wings
Prince Harry was presented with his flying wings by his father the Duke of Cornwall (Picture: MOD).

In 2014, it was announced that the Prince would begin a staff officer role in the Army, based in London.

It was also in this year when Prince Harry founded the Invictus Games, an international sporting competition involving wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans.

The first event was held in London, followed by tournaments in Orlando in 2016, Toronto in 2017 and Sydney in 2018.

After more than a decade of full-time military service, Prince Harry ended his career with the Army in June 2015, following a secondment to Australian Special Forces.

In 2017, Prince Harry was formally appointed Captain General Royal Marines by Her Majesty the Queen.

He assumed the role in succession to his grandfather, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.

Following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's decision to not return as working royals, it was confirmed Prince Harry would return three of his military appointments to the Queen, including Captain General Royal Marines.

	Prince Harry Afghanistan Apache Pilot 2012
Prince Harry at the British controlled flight-line in Camp Bastion, September 2012 (Picture: PA)

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