Royal Artillery unit re-forms after eight years with new home and new role

A Royal Artillery battery has re-formed after eight years in a special ceremony, with the unit taking on a brand new role ahead of its first deployment.

137 (Java) Battery, 12th Regiment Royal Artillery, known as the Jumbos, was welcomed back on the parade square at Baker Barracks on Thorney Island, West Sussex, with family, friends and veterans all present.

However, the welcome-back party is not set to last long, as the Jumbos will soon be heading to Estonia.

The unit is set to operate the Stormer vehicle in a ground-based air defence role - a different job from its field artillery past.

Sergeant Adrian Warbank told Forces News he had "always been guns".

But he added: "[It's] going to be new to me, the way they deploy, the way they deploy the equipment and how we work with the rhythm of the battlegroup."

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The battery was reformed because there is a huge need for it to work as part of ongoing multinational missions.   

Stormer is viewed as a massive capability, but what exactly does it do? 

Capable of firing high-velocity missiles and lightweight multi-role missiles, the vehicle has a range of 400 miles and a top speed 50mph.

The vehicle will be used by 137 Battery on their imminent deployment to Estonia.

Second Lieutenant Connor Stuart told Forces News they would be "straight in" to the deployment.

"We fully reformed, in the Army's eyes, in April, did all of our pre-deployment training and assurances over the summer and we'll be [in Estonia] until March," he said.

12th Regiment Royal Artillery is the only regiment that provides Close Support Air Defence to the Army's most important assets on the battlefield, using state-of-the-art missiles and detection systems.

This gives it the ability to destroy a variety of threats from enemy rotary wing to unmanned aerial systems.

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